My husband's children (15 and 17) live with their mother, and he has had limited contact with them for the past year since she moved them 50 miles away and has allowed them to refuse visitation. She has also told them that their father is an addict, was abusive to her, and had an affair with me before they separated--none of which are true. After months of trying to make visitation happen, my husband has stopped driving there anymore but does text the kids (they don't answer his calls) about holidays, events, etc. He usually gets some sort of rude or hostile response, but since texting them about Christmas over a week ago (inviting them to be included in whatever of our celebrations they would like), he's gotten no response. He always cc's the kids mother, and has had no response from her
Family Law Attorney
You haven't asked a question here, so it's hard to give an answer. (Please see this Guide: http://www.avvo.com/legal-guides/ugc/five-tips-for-how-to-ask-for-legal-advice-on-avvocom .) That said:
If your husband has a custody and parenting time order on file with a court for these children, he can file a motion to enforce it. If he doesn't have such an order, he'll need to file a petition to get one. Children do not get to unilaterally decide about visitation with their parents, even older teenagers (until they turn 18, at which point they're legally adults and not subject to parental authority at all). And parents are not supposed to act to keep their children away from their co-parents - the law, and judges, strongly disapprove of this. But courts also will not order radical changes to a child's schedule, however unfairly a parent acted to create it - the theory is, the other parent has a duty to enforce their own rights. So your husband can get the court to order that he see the children again, but it may be limited at first. He should consult in private with an attorney about this process if he's serious.
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It's a sad situation you described...you need contact in order to mend the damage done by the ex. But contact is being restricted and the kids are not responsive themselves.
This problem can be solved, but it takes patience and determination. And I also think you need an attorney to guide you through the process.
The legal course to take is to file a motion for contempt and enforcement of the parenting time plan in place. That should get people's attention and hopefully start moving things in the right direction.
It's tough to mend issues with teens as well - they're busy establishing their own identities and would prefer to worry about that rather than their parent's issues. But it's also vital that they maintain a positive relationship w their father as they mature.
Best of luck to you.