Pinnacle Family Law
Family Law and Estate Planning. Offices in Novi, Ann Arbor, Lansing, Kalamazoo and Grand Rapids. Michigan Statewide Practice.
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What If I Can't Talk To My Kids?

tel-story-girl-phone.jpgIf you are sharing your kids in a court order, there will inevitably be issues. This does not mean the other parent will purposefully hurt you -- though that could, and sometimes does, happen - it means both of you are learning the ins and outs of a two-household situation and there will be differences on opinion.


One of these is whether, and how often, to call during the other's parenting time. 


There is no "standard" or "right" answer here. The family court can fashion an order to include phone calls, as parenting time is to be awarded in "frequency, type (read: calls) and duration" to encourage the parent-child relationship. MCL 722.27a.  Each family is unique, and, therefore, so should be the order.


In general, look for:

1. If your order already includes calls and you are being denied, file a parenting time complaint with the Friend of the Court. If the denials continue to happen, talk to an attorney like those of us at Pinnacle Family Law about proceeding with a contempt action for violating court orders.


2. If your order does not, ask if the other parent will agree to a schedule. If so, write it down, both of you sign it, and file it with the court, ideally as an order. The State Court website contains order forms you can use. 


3. If the other parent disagrees, consider filing a motion to include calls in your order. The order should address: time of the call, duration of the call, whether the other parent can listen in, who else can be on the call, and a back-up phone number for the call in case the other parent's service is down, phone is not charged, etc.


But simply not allowing the calls -- or putting up with that -- is NOT OK. You are entitled to that contact with your child, so take it.


If you have any questions about this topic or anything else related to your case, do not hesitate to contact our office for a complimentary consultation.

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