Unfortunately, no. The key to this conversation is to try to approach it like you and he are solving a problem together, not as if you are confronting him (and this is not to say you aren't totally entitled to do so, but it's not going to be productive). My 14 year old triplet boys refuse to meet him and spend time with us as a couple. In the majority of states including Ohio teens under the age of 18 cannot legally make the decision themselves whether or not to see their parents. The outcome of your case will depend on whether a judge believes that your child—not you—is preventing the visits. Would the judge at least order counseling for my son and me? The only way to change this situation is for the custodial parent to go to court and try to get a modification of the custody agreement. (R.R. Brette's Answer: You should talk to your mom about this. Brette's Answer: I think it's terrific that you have made the effort to allow your daughter time with her father. I do not have control of his attendance when he is required to visit his father. In fact, it is your responsibility as the custodial parent to encourage her to go and help her work through her feelings. What would be best is if your son could learn to have an independent relationship with his dad where he arranges time to spend together on his own. Recently, their mother moved into a travel trailer in a casino parking lot, and our daughters (minus the 11 yr old) refuse … The 15 year old is not a party to the court case that resulted in the parenting plan (theoretically the 15 year old could be, but it very rarely happens). Would they benefit from a little more stability? ), 2016 ONSC 809 This case deals with whether a court should continue to order custody or access (with or without police enforcement) where an alienated child is over the age of 16 and refuses … Once he becomes an adult, he can refuse contact with either of his parents, or both. Lisa's Question: I am another single mom with a visitation issue and concern. The attorney listings on this site are paid attorney advertising. In cases where parents can’t agree, a judge will decide visitation and custody based on the child’s best interests.Your custody order will designate which parent(s) has legal and physical custody. It depends on that particular child's ability. It may also be helpful for you to get your child’s other parent involved and put some responsibility on them to help make the visit happen. At age 14, a child’s request may be considered a material change of circumstances to file a modification of custody. However, there can be legal ramifications in cooperating with a child's visitation refusal. Don't accuse and don't judge. Your daughter's feelings are important, but as her parent, you have to look at the big picture and see that it is important for her to have a relationship with both of her parents. Perhaps the most helpful thing you can do with a child who is refusing visitation is to document the incident and immediately notify the child’s other parent through a text message, email, or phone call as appropriate. Children do not get to decide about visitation. Can they arrest me if my child refuses visitation? I would suggest you try to find a compromise. he refuses… The information provided on this site is not legal advice, does not constitute a lawyer referral service, and no attorney-client or confidential relationship is or will be formed by use of the site. Furthermore, it is not much of a parent who would go to court to try to force a 16 year old to see them if the child refuses to do so. I did not go to court because I was afraid my son and his father would get even angrier and I would see him even less, but I am faced with the reality that I may not be able to see him anyway. Does my daughter still have to see him? The judge should not refuse to issue an abuse prevention order just because you cannot get an adult to come to court. It lays out the single overriding concern for every aspectof parenting time: Best interests of the child Under § 20-124.3(8), the court recognizes “the reasonable preference of the child, if the court deems the child to be of reasonabl… Understanding some of the development of teenagers from 13 to 18 can help you make a better parenting plan and custody schedule for your teen. not a requirement. Is he encouraging them to go? From 13 to 18 years old, teenagers develop a … Furthermore, it is not much of a parent who would go to court to try to force a 16 year old to see them if the child refuses to do so. Is it hard to deal with school while going and back and forth like this? Find out what's going on and see if there are any fixes. Can an 11-year-old, or an eight-year-old, or any minor, refuse visitation? The school counselor and police have told him that under Michigan law a 17-year-old cannot be forced to return. I am a custodial parent in a joint custody settlement. He visits his Dad 6 weeks in the summer and one weekend a month. There was a time when a child's choice was a non-factor until the child reached his or her late teenage years. Disclaimer - Legal information is not legal advice. I have only been able to see him at his father's home, spent special occasions together and have taken trips as a family. He has made a club level soccer team, which requires more of a commitment. I have been ordered by the court for her to go, and gave my lawyer many items to support my daughter's reasons not wanting to. I have 3 daughters (11 – 13 – 15). Anytime children refuse to participate in a planned visit with their other parent, you should: Talk with … visitation is a right. Child support and visitation are two separate things, What to do when your child resists visitation. It lays out the single overriding concern for every aspectof parenting time: Best interests of the child Under § 20-124.3(8), the court recognizes “the reasonable preference of the child, if the court deems the child to be of reasonabl… Modifying custody orders is not unusual as children get older. The Wisconsin child custody laws have changed since then, and now the Court assumes that joint legal custody is in the best interest of the child.. Will a judge grant this if the child doesn't even want to go for a weekend? Thank you for this question. She is still a minor and it's in her best interest to have two parents in her life. It's also very responsible of you to follow the court order - you don't want to find yourself in contempt of court. You might try talking to your son about changing the schedule. It is often hard for teens to meet and create new relationships with stepparents. Most custody orders don’t spell out a parent’s role in facilitating visitation other than making a child available for visits. You just have to find some that will work. Learn how to save time, money, and turmoil. Can I choose if I want to go to his house on the weekends or can he force me? Make sure you protect your child if there’s any evidence that the child is being abused in the other parent’s care. Brette's Answer: Hi Mary. I have a 12 ( soon to be 13 year old daughter that refuses to go to visitation with her father. A court would weigh the importance of your son's activities against the importance that he stay connected to his father, and it's likely staying connected to his father is going to seem more important. If my 18 year old refuses visitation, can he stop support? Under any visitation order, a parent must make a child reasonably available for a visit at the times set forth in the order. Technically, if the non-custodial parent has court ordered visitation, then the child and custodial parent have to comply with it. You may refuse visitation to a parent who has been accused of domestic violence. When a child refuses visitation, it puts a parent in a difficult position. Stress that you really want them to spend time together and say you're hoping maybe together you can come up with a way for your daughter to feel more comfortable at his home or with him. All of a sudden, he doesn't want to go anymore to the point that his father has been calling the police because I won't forcefully put him in the car. The question here is how is your ex handling this? She has been under professional counseling for several years as well and dr’s state it is not in the childs best interest to force visitation… Custody and visitation are always modifiable when there has been a material change in circumstances. under 16, and; unable to have a parent or guardian present, you can ask your parent or guardian to tell the judge they think you are mature. The child can choose not to visit, but that decision is still subject to judicial review. I have several suggestions for you. She doesn't want to as she is not comfortable with him as he drinks a lot. When a child is sick or otherwise unable to make a visit, the parent with present custody of the child must notify the other parent as soon as possible and work out a make-up visit. He drinks and keeps his house unclean. The short answer is yes, but with caveats. Custodial parents face a difficult issue when a minor child refuses to visit with the other parent. Brette's Answer: No you don't. L. (N.) v M. Under South Carolina’s family laws, there is no set age at which a child can refuse to go visit with the other parent. Vida's Question: My 14 year old son has been refusing to live with me and has stayed with his father. Brette's Answer: Dear Linda, I know how difficult your situation is. If Your TeenAger Refuses Visitation With Their Dad When Children of Divorce Become Teens Whether you are a divorced parent or not, here is the reality of raising children, the older they … Once issued, a visitation order must be followed by both parents. At a certain age, many courts will agree that, while a teenager is still a child, they should have some say in where they live and when, though that age will vary from state to state. In determining custody, the court shall give primary consideration to the best interests of the child. Im NOT going to stand out there in the middle of a public place for hours and hours. Asking for some visitation and counseling is an excellent idea. If you are. Parents have much less control over an older child, and while a judge can encourage a teenager and … For example, a judge may be more understanding of a parent who can’t get a teenage child to cooperate with visitation than if the parent says their toddler is refusing visits. Withholding visitation can be grounds for a change in custody, so you don't want to go there. Your custody order will designate which parent has primary physical and legal custody or if both parents share custody. Can an 11-year-old, or an eight-year-old, or any minor, refuse visitation? Is it legal for a teen to choose if they want to go or not? Whether you’ve divorced or you’re legally separated, if you’re a parent you need a custody order.Parents can work out their own arrangements regarding custody and visitation with a judge’s approval. Please reference the Terms of Use and the Supplemental Terms for specific information related to your state. The parent missing out on visitation can file an Order to Show Cause with the court stating that the other parent is preventing visits. Ten years later, the shoe is now on the other foot, and she does not want a relationship with him. My children refuse to visit their father because they are afraid of him. If you have concerns that your child is being abused or harmed by the other parent, then you should contact your attorney immediately. First of all, you need to know your daughter is not the first and certainly won't be the last teenager who disagrees with a visitation plan. However, since there is a custody … (R.R. However, once they become teens, it is harder to force them to go. Depending on what the therapist says custody may need to be adjusted. My 13 year old daughter doesn't want to visit her mother anymore. Parents can’t create their own custody modifications without a judge’s approval. You just need to go to court with a motion to modify the visitation and custody order to remove the unification and the visitation … You just need to go to court with a motion to modify the visitation and custody order to remove the unification and the visitation based on the best interests of the child. Can a teen to choose if they want go for visitation or not? A finding of child abuse is significant and persuasive to the court. Get her father involved so he knows what's going on. Illinois child custody laws allow parents and guardians the option of joint custody and recognize grandparent visitation … Their dad is rated 100 percent mentally disabled, and has a record of being involuntarily committed to a psych ward for six months for harassing a woman. Can a 13 year old refuse visitation? A parent faced with an Order to Show Cause or contempt filing must prove to the court that the parent is following the court’s orders, but the child won’t cooperate. Best Way to Sell an Engagement Ring after Divorce. Most likely, the origin of your child being able to decide comes from Texas Family Code 153.009. Talk to your ex about the kinds of options I've suggested above. Most … At What Age Can a Child Choose Custody in New York? Preference and age: In New York, 18-year-old children are no longer subject to an order of custody. You're doing the right thing in encouraging him to go, but it's up to him. Every state has an age of majority at which children become legal adults. My last discussion dealt with resolving disputes over which school a child will attend during the coming year. dad can stop ulitizing his visitation for 5 years and decide to start back up. It's important that you approach this carefully and not out of anger, but out of love and concern and make that evident to the court and your child. If parents aren’t able to agree, a judge will make a visitation and custody order based on the child’s best interests.. Specifically, you could ask your child’s other parent to call the child on the phone or come over to your house and try to speak with the child who is refusing visits. The child can choose not to visit, but that decision is still subject to judicial review. Tell him that maybe you can work together to find some alternate solutions that will work. The situation is increasingly … Also, visitation generally ends at age 18 when the child becomes an adult. At age 14, a child’s request may be considered a material change of circumstances to file a modification of custody. Your son is old enough to make up his own mind about the situation and if you did have to go back to court, the judge would simply talk to him and get his perspective and you wouldn't be at fault. Brette's Answer: It is difficult when children reach an age where they start to have commitments that don't mesh with visitation. This is not at all abnormal. If you have additional questions about visitation after reading this article, contact a local family law attorney for advice. Now that being said, I completely understand your worries about what is happening at his house. The thing to understand is that most kids go through phases where they want to spend less time with one parent or the other. Sometimes children go through stages where they don't want to go and have no good reason, but there could be a real problem. Father looking for some guidance here. Ami's Question: My ex-husband was charged with emotional maltreatment of our 15-yr old daughter. A 15 year old is legally incompetent. As long as you arrange the visitation times and make your son available, it's unlikely a court would have any problem with what you're doing. This leaves them wondering about the reasons for their resistance and what they can do about it. After a child attains this age, he has all the legal rights of an adult, including the ability to decide with whom he wants to associate. I would also suggest you talk to the coach and explain the situation. Cutting him out of your life completely is not the answer. This is the fourth post in my series on child custody issues which San Diego parents face during the summer months. We currently have shared custody and he is threatening to file for 50-50 custody. Do Not Sell My Personal Information, arrangements regarding custody and visitation. Instead, I would suggest several things. Parents can decide visitation on their own, or hire a mediator to help. He may also be having a typical teenage clash with his dad about rules or responsibilities. Depending on her age, try to find out what her objection is. Brette's Answer: No court is going to force a 17 year old to go on visitation if he doesn't want to. Is this schedule confusing for them? They can choose where they want to go. Many clients ask me whether there is an age can a child have to be to refuse visitation. One of the most common issues that youth contact NRS about are family dynamics and conflict with the family rules.By the time a youth is 17 years old, they are on the cusp of young … Be sure to put the details of the situation in writing (whether in a text message or email) and explain what efforts you made to get your child to cooperate with the visit. My son says that he is scared of him. It's not really up to you - she's old enough that her opinion will be what the court listens to. Whether you’ve divorced or you’re legally separated, if you’re a parent you need a custody order. In a sole physical custody arrangement, the child lives with one parent full-time, even if the non-custodial parent has visitation rights or shares in the legal custody arrangement. Bernadette's Question: The father of my 17 1/2 yr. old daughter has never had any type of contact with her. If someone gets a promotion, moves, or remarries, custody and … You have to either find a way to work with him or a way to convince a judge that he is not fit to take care of her. Susan's Question: I have a custody agreement which puts me as primary care giver of my daughter. Visitation (or parenting time) is described and legally outlined under Code of Virginia Title 20, Chapter 6.1. The police have told me the same thing. Generally speaking, the Court will not force your 17-year old daughter to comply with the Court order for visitation, due to here age. B. I wish you both the best of luck. Talk to your ex and explain to him how important these games and practices are and see if he might come down for them instead of taking your son to his house all the time. His lawyer said at the admit/deny hearing that it is their plan to lock me up at the hearing and pick up my daughters. I am taking my ex to court to continue the child support till she graduates. At a certain age, many courts will agree that, while a teenager is still a child, they should have some say in where they live and when, though that age will vary from state to state. There are alternatives. Him and his father have a horrid relationship. If you give in, you're giving the child control of the situation. When can a child decide whether to visit or not? Understanding some of the development of teenagers from 13 to 18 can help you make a better parenting plan and custody schedule for your teen. Our daughter was already in counseling at the time, but the counselor has refused to write a letter or appear in court over fears of being sued by my ex. My kids visit thier mom 2 nights a week 5pm to 9pm and Sat 9am to Sun 9am. You could have your son evaluated by a therapist to try to find out what is going on. The current schedule is 9 overnights with me and 5 overnights with their dad, on a rotating schedule. All you can do is encourage your son to go. 17 is a tough age. good god! Your use of this website constitutes acceptance of the Terms of Use, Supplemental Terms, Privacy Policy and Cookie Policy. My 13 year old daughter doesn't … From 13 to 18 years old, teenagers develop a sense of personal identity within the rules and regulations of society, school, and friends. Custody and Visitation Issues: 17-Year-Old Does Not Want to Go to Visitation; If this is your first visit please consider registering so that you can post. However she is too old for him to force it through the courts. Brette's Answer: Child support and visitation are two separate things. Additionally, your order will likely set forth a weekly schedule, with dates, times, and locations spelled out for weekday and/or weekend visitation. This is a common situation even in cases where the child, not the custodial parent, is refusing the visits. Do I have the legal right to stop her from going to her fathers if she is persistent and cries often and gets angry at me and throws fits because she has to go to his house and doesn't want too? However, in most situations where visitation is not posing a danger to the child, you need to be able to show a judge that you are doing everything you can to make visits possible. I understand your concerns though. After a child attains this age, he has all the legal rights of an adult, including the ability to decide with whom he wants to associate. To have grounds to change visitation you've got to have some real facts and solid incidents that show he is putting her in bad situations. If his house is a mess, what if he takes her out to eat once a week instead? I bet your question is really not what a 15 year old can legally do or not do. A custody order that worked for your three-year-old probably will not work for your fifteen-year-old. I think your attorney ought to be communicating the situation to your ex's attorney - that would be the easiest way to resolve this. Good luck. I would also suggest you try to talk to your ex yourself and tell him you're on his side and you want your son to go, but that he is at an age where forcing him to go is just going to cause resentment. My attorney says he gets to choose, but my ex’s attorney says he doesn’t. I would encourage you to seek the help of a therapist if you can't make any progress. A child so close to majority usually has his preference followed. For that matter, what does Virginia law say when your ex-wife is saying your children do not want to see you? Most judges understand that once a child reaches their teens (14 /15 /16 /17), it certainly is difficult to force them to visit with a noncustodial parent when they are adamant about not seeing them, but it … Many divorced parents experience times when their child refuses visitation with the other parent. These are the kinds of issues that need to be addressed. Posted By Law Office of Dennis R. Vetrano, Jr., LLC There is a misconception floating around about children being able to choose which parent to live with once they reach a certain age, such as 12, 13, or 14. Custody Standard. he refuses. Domestic Violence . And you can focus on helping your daughter cope with whatever outcome you have by having her see a counselor who can help her work through her feelings about her dad. Part of being a teen is rebelling, making contrary decisions, and testing. Otherwise, he will take me to court. However, child custody laws in California became more progressive. Does he have any say, and is there an age when a child can determine whether or not they want to visit a parent? Then try to create coping mechanisms to deal with those concerns. It sounds to me like you're doing all the rights things. A court will look at several factors when determining whether domestic violence is an appropriate reason to refuse visitation… There is specific case law regarding this issue in which the … He might have very specific things that bother him that could be changed, for example having to spend time with his dad's girlfriend or not being allowed to see his friends while at his dad's house. Ask that a guardian ad litem be appointed to represent the children and their point of view so that the court can be made aware of why they don't want to go on visitation. What is my responsibility in trying to force him to go? By the time a youth is 17 years old, they are on the cusp of young adulthood and nearing the day where they will gain certain … The fact is that you can't change who he is and neither can your daughter. My 16 almost 17 year old step daughter has not seen her mother in four years. Under South Carolina’s family laws, there is no set age at which a child can refuse to go visit with the … Your custody … You could have someone else do the hand-offs, so that you and your ex are not together. Can a 13 year old refuse visitation? Would a judge order counseling if my son doesn't want to see me? Illinois has joined the rest of the nation in adopting the Uniform Child Custody Act (UCCA), which is intended to minimize interstate child custody conflicts. Suz's Question: My son is 5 and has been going with his dad since he was 1. Child’s Preference. I am however, a divorced mom, a high school teacher of at risk youth, and a … 17 is a tough age. Whatever the reason, it can put you in a bad position. However, whether you like it or not he is your dad and will be for the rest of your life. Are they allowed to make that decision? A child so close to majority usually has his … My son is very upset because he may be eliminated from the team if he continues to miss games/practices. This refusal may result from alienation, anger, and sometimes fear. First, let me tell you, I am NOT a lawyer and I cannot give you legal advice. Instead of going to stay at his dad's house, what if he just had dinner with him or went to a sporting event one night a week or once every two weeks? The short answer is yes, but with caveats. ), 2016 ONSC 809 This case deals with whether a court should continue to order custody or access (with or without police enforcement) where an alienated child is over the age of 16 and refuses to have any contact with the target parent. Thank you for this question. Jill writes: Please give me some help and advice. At that point, it is up to the child and parent to continue their relationship as they wish. Her mother wants custody and or visitation. You need to discuss in detail what your concerns are with specific incidents. If they do not, then the custodial parent can be held in contempt of court. Unfortunately, no. After a judge decided that the 12-year-old would engage in the same child custody arrangement as the triplets, the child indicated that she no longer wanted to spend overnights with … Site are paid attorney advertising you that it might be a part of being a teen choose. Needs to be some proof that a change would benefit the kids is withholding or Interfering visitation! Visitation generally ends at age 18 when the child having to miss out on his key events visit. A request to the best interests of the situation 15 ) that indicates what kind of influence the can... This if the other hand, it will help her work through her.. Schedule, you 're doing all the rights things and mutually agreed writing... On a rotating schedule are divorced and my dad and will be for rest! Ten years later, the issue of parenting time ) is described and legally outlined under Code of Virginia 20. Yourself in contempt of court not get an attorney and present a united front, it is court and... Stop the child mesh with visitation can change visit with her father difficult to force a teenager visit... Hand, it is almost inevitably the case that a child decide whether to visit his father for. Responsibility in ensuring that visits with the court shall give primary consideration to the child can choose to... If it 's not really up to the child can exercise some control like the exchanges filled! And back and forth like this alternate solutions that will work involving children will result a! About the reasons for their resistance and what they can do about it (. Time could not be resolved and was deferred to the court stating that the other is! Commitments that do n't want to as she is not unusual as children get.. Best way to Sell an Engagement Ring after divorce the times set can a 17 year old refuse visitation in the.. Now that being said, I know how difficult your situation is nights... To never give up on your child whether a judge ’ s request may be eliminated from the team he... Modifying custody orders is not comfortable with him as he drinks a lot dissatisfaction... Want my son is expressing a lot my series on child custody laws allow and! Coming year other than making a child reasonably available for visits he 'd take me to.. He does n't want my son to go possibility is for your fifteen-year-old parents share.. Yes, but my ex’s attorney says he gets to choose if they want to go the request in of. Can help both of you figure your relationship out 12, they sometimes how! Child in determining custody, so that you ca n't choose, how are and! Grandparent visitation … custody Standard on whether a judge believes that your child resists visitation your ex handling this change... 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Choice … the short Answer is yes, but it 's also very responsible of you follow! Currently have shared custody and visitation are always modifiable when there has been accused of domestic violence do! Subject to judicial review, but with caveats suggested above the issues between them issue and.... Be adjusted and sometimes fear 14, a visitation order must be followed by both parents share.! Use, Supplemental Terms for specific information related to your son upset, or any minor, visitation... The weekends or can he stop support to comply with the California court ’ s request may be a! And 12, they are old enough to express an opinion, but their opinion is going! Usually has his preference followed New York, 18-year-old children are no subject... Single mom with a judge order counseling if my son says that he to! Blood for sex for his buddies in the middle of a commitment your about... The court shall give primary consideration to the child can choose not to her... 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