One of the unfortunate results of a divorce involving children are situations in which one parent denies visitation to the other parent or refuses to allow the other parent access to reasonable communications with the child.
In Maryland, refusal of child custody may potentially cause serious legal problems for the custodial parent. Maryland Circuit Court judges take parental rights regarding child access seriously, and the Circuit Court judge will generally issue an order that it is in the best interest of the child to spend quality time with both parents. Because the court places the best interest of the child above most other interests when determining custody arrangements, child visitation rights can rarely, if ever be legally denied by the custodial parent.
Maryland Refusal of Child Custody and Child Access in Montgomery County, Maryland and Prince George’s County, Maryland
When a custodial parent denies access or visitation to his or her children’s non-custodial parent in violation of a divorce decree or custody order the spouse being denied access may ask the court to order that the non-compliant parent be held in contempt of court.
According to Section 9-105 of the Maryland Code’s Family Law Article if “the court determines that a party to a custody or visitation order has unjustifiably denied or interfered with visitation granted by a custody or visitation order, the court may, in addition to any other remedy available to the court and in a manner consistent with the best interests of the child, take any or all of the following actions: (1) order that the [missed] visitation be rescheduled; (2) modify the custody or visitation order to require additional terms or conditions designed to ensure future compliance with the order; and (3) assess costs or counsel fees against the party who has unjustifiably or interfered with visitation rights.”
If a parent continues to deny access to the child another request may be made to have the non-compliant parent held in contempt of court which often results in serious consequences for the custodial parent to ensure compliance. If the Maryland refusal of child custody and access continues, the court may potentially order that the willfully non-compliant parent forfeits primary custody of the children to the non-custodial parent.
What is considered denial of child visitation in Montgomery County, Maryland and Prince George’s County, Maryland?
In Maryland, refusal of child custody, depending on the terms of the custody order, a Maryland Circuit Court Judge may find that a parent is willfully and intentionally disregarding the child custody order by doing committing any of the following acts:
- Refusing to communicate with the non-custodial parent about the child
- Making it difficult for the non-custodial parent to communicate with the child by phone, email, or video calls
- Refusing to be flexible on needed adjustments to the parenting time schedule
- Making disparaging and antagonistic comments about the other parent in front of or to the child
- Scheduling activities for the child on the other parent’s time without prior communication and agreement
- Exhibiting negative nonverbal communication towards the other parent in front of the child
- Withholding information about the child such as medical appointments, school events, and extracurricular activities
Speak with an Experienced Child Custody Attorney for your Prince George’s County, Maryland or Montgomery County, Maryland
At the Law Office of LaSheena M. Williams, you can consult with a child custody attorney that can help you address your concerns regarding Maryland refusal of child custody and access. We can help you enforce your parental right to having a valuable role in your children’s lives. Contact the Law Office of LaSheena M. Williams today, to discuss your family’s needs with a Maryland child custody attorney. You can reach our office at (301) 778 – 9950 or by completing an online request for a consultation.
Denying access to a child may create an emotionally damaging situation for a child who most likely has no influence over the situation.