New York Family Court can become creative when it must deal with diverse personalities in divorce decrees. This is especially true when the divorce decree includes a custody issue with the parents of minor children. There are almost as many options for customizing custody decrees as there are people who must be governed by them.
A New York Family Lawyer said sometimes, parents are not happy with the choices that the courts make for them in regard to the custody arrangement prepared by the courts. When that happens, one or both of the parents can become belligerent about the inaction of the orders. It becomes the court’s duty to enforce the decree and the custody orders that are attached to it. When one or both of the parents of a minor child do not comply with the court orders, the courts will issue penalties that can be quite harsh.
In one case from New York, a mother was not being compliant about allowing her ex-husband the visitation that the court had ordered for him. After she failed to present the child for visitation on several occasions, the court ordered that she would have to deal with the consequences. The court ordered that one half of her child support payments from her ex-husband would have to go into an escrow account with her attorney. A Nassau County Family Lawyer said that money would then be used solely for the purpose of enhancing the relationship between the father and the child. In order for her to obtain funds from that escrow account, she would have to present an accounting to the court.
The mother appealed the decision based on the fact that the child support payments were money that was to be used for the child. The child was in essence being punished by the court because her mother was not complying with the court orders. A Nassau County Child Support Lawyer said the court countered with the alternative that the mother prove that she could comply with the visitation orders in their entirety for a period of six months. If she could prove that she would be trustworthy in regards to complying with the orders, then the escrow account would be released to her.
There is no information as to how well this worked. It seems on the surface to be a punishment for the child since it is unknown how much money the mother had at her disposal to begin with to support the child on her own. However, the concept used by the court to apply pressure to the mother so that she would comply with the visitation schedule is creative. It is important to consider the options that are presented to the courts to ensure that parents comply with the court orders that are issued. Finding a parent in contempt of court for failing to comply with a visitation schedule is a harsh alternative that could involve placing the parent in jail. Obviously, having one parent in jail is not in the best interest of the child and in many ways is worse than not visiting the rightful parent. In the United States Constitution, the right to have the punishment fit the crime is an essential aspect of the law. However, fitting a punishment to an inconvenience or annoyance is not as easy as it would appear. Law makers have struggled with the appropriateness of punishments for crimes since the Constitution was first enacted.
Of course, the most reasonable solution is for adults to act like adults. They need to speak their concerns in court and accept the consequences as they are issued. When adults refuse to follow the orders of the court, they risk getting imprisoned or losing custody of their children.
At Stephen Bilkis & Associates with its divorce Lawyers there are convenient offices throughout New York State and Metropolitan area. Our child custody Attorneys can provide you with advice to guide you through difficult situations, whether you need an order for protection, or have a custody issue. Hiring a civil attorney can prevent you from losing precious time with your family.