I have custody of my daughter but her dad gets visitation. He recently was in an accident and is in ICU. He was in a coma but opened his eyes a few days ago. His mom is taking me to court for contempt because I have not given my daughter to her on all his days. I do let his family see her, I just don't let this exercise his exact time. I don't feel like I should have to give my daughter to his mother because her name is not in our parenting plan and she is not her parent. Can I be charged with contempt when her dad is in the hospital and unable to exercise his parenting time?
More than likely not. Further his parents likely don't have standing to raise that issue as it would be up to him to file a motion for contempt.
I agree with my colleague that it is unlikely that the Grandmother will be successful in her petition. Without seeing the exact language of the parenting plan; however, it is impossible to give you a definitive answer. I would advise hiring an attorney to help you defend against this petition for contempt as soon as possible. This case may be one that would be appropriate for the filing of a Rule 12.02(6) Motion to Dismiss. Discuss this option with your attorney.
Unless there is something in the court order that requires grandparent visitation, it is unlikely that the GP can prevail on contempt charges. If the GP has filed a contempt petition, be sure to question whether it is for "civil" or "criminal" contempt. If it is for criminal contempt, you should be given the opportunity to have an attorney appointed to represent you.
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