When creating a child custody order, two Stockton parents may agree that they will transfer their child from parent to parent at 5 o’clock in the evening on their transfer days. However, if their order stipulates nothing else about the transfers, they may face confusion early on in their divorce. For example, where are the parents going to make the custody transfers? Is one parent going to do all of the driving, or are the parents going to take turns getting the child to and from the transfer spot?
The California courts clearly stipulate that specific factors related to a child’s custody arrangement, including where and when he will be transferred from one parent to the other, can be stated in a custody order. The example provided above highlights just a few of the issues that can arise when parents fail to clarify elements of their custody arrangements. When parents do not agree or fail to agree about such matters, children can be affected and miss out on important time with their parents.
A contentious relationship between ex-spouses may become even more strained if they do not have the same expectations about their shared child custody arrangement. For this reason it is important that they take the time to discuss how custody matters will be handled, where the child will be transferred, who is responsible for driving the child to transfers, and any additional details related to their custody arrangement.
If one parent fails to abide by the transfer terms of a child custody arrangement, the other parent may seek enforcement of the child custody order through the family courts. Additionally, if either parent seeks to modify a child custody order to change the terms of a child’s transfer, he should do so through the courts to make sure the new terms have legal weight. Many issues can arise after a divorce or separation, and individuals who take the time to work out issues such as custody transfer matters before settling on their orders may avoid problems later on.