Family law attorneys across Iowa have never seen an event that has been as disruptive to child custody agreements as Covid-19. Reluctance to allow agreed upon visitation out of fear that children will become infected has led some parents to defy child custody orders or seek emergency orders when they feel the other parent is exposing the children to risks unnecessarily.
Although parents may feel uneasy, court orders remain in place despite the public health emergency that the Corona pandemic presents. Parents are being encouraged to find a compromise that may include fewer transitions between households, perhaps using technology to stay in touch, with a plan to make up any lost time later in the year.
More often than not, however, divorced parents who did not see eye to eye during the marriage continue to disagree on the issues after the divorce and child custody is no exception. Parents who are denied visitation sometimes must seek the help of an attorney to file contempt actions for allege violations of court orders while others must seek modifications to the court order to protect a child’s best interests.
During these unprecedented times particularly, parents may seek a temporary suspension of custody orders in order to keep kids safe when the other parent is not taking the threat of infection seriously or are at higher risk of infection because they have someone in their household with Covid-19 or their job puts them at increased risk for infection.
In fact, there are a growing number of parents across the country who have sought legal action to prevent ex-spouse’s and parents who provide crucial services – doctors, nurses and emergency services workers such as paramedic, police and firefighters – from visitation because they are on the front lines of the pandemic.
There are many types of violations and challenges occurring during this unique period of time that may require the help of a family law attorney such as:
- A parent refusing to exchange the child and claiming the child is safer with them or that they are prohibited from leaving the house
- A parent not making poor custodial decisions when there is the risk of infection or when someone in the household gets the virus
- A parent that works in a high risk occupation
- Parents in conflict because exchanges took place at school and that is no longer an option
Having Trouble Enforcing Child Custody and Visitation During Covid-19?
Get Help Sharing Custody During Covid-19
If you have concerns regarding the safety of your children or have been denied child custody and visitation during Covid-19, or need assistance modifying a custody order or parenting plan, contact our experienced family law attorneys for help. Contact Des Moines family law attorneys of Stoltze & Stoltze PLC are here to help.