Practice Area: Family
Outcome: Client obtained sole legal and physical custody.
Description: Despite an order that did not permit either parent to remove the daughter from California, the mother took the child to live in Texas. Once she got there, she refused to disclose her address and cut off communication between the father and the child. The father came to me, not knowing what to do and afraid that he would never see his daughter again. I filed an emergency motion demanding that the mother return the child to California and for a modification of custody and visitation. We successfully obtained an order for the child's return, but the mother still refused to comply with the order. After a contested hearing, the judge awarded sole legal and physical custody of the child to my client and ordered that if the mother did not return the child, the District Attorney was to charge her with parental kidnapping and physically seize the child. Luckily, the mother finally thought about the child's best interests and voluntarily brought her to live with her father. The last I heard, the child was doing well in school, enrolled in extracurricular activities, and happy living with her father.