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Is it my responsibility to drive at all to pick up my child from his father's weekend when court order says differently?

Denver, CO |

1. Divorce in CO
2. Both parties now reside in TX
3. Child is starting elementary school.
4. Father has been following divorce papers from day 1 for almost every every other weekend visitation from CO to TX.
5. Father has now moved 200 miles from primary residence in TX.
6. Papers state Parenting Time with Husband shall be "Husband picks child up from school on Friday and drops child back to school on Monday" (every other weekend Extended Weekend Parenting Plan)
7. Papers state Cost of Travel for Parenting Time shall be "the parties are responsible for the cost of their travel to see child for their parenting time."
8. Father has now made me pick up child from his parenting time from 35 miles away.

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Attorney answers 1


First of all, since you both live in Texas, you should register your order in Texas and enfore it there. You can enforce here, but the cost of doing so would not necessarily be a good financial decision.

Second, if this were Colorado, you could enforce the order that Dad does all the driving and my guess would be that Texas would be the same way. HOWEVER, courts recognize that children are best served when they have both parents in their lives, and if your ex asked the court to modify the plan so that you shared the driving, a court might go along with that by reasoning that both parents should do what they can to allow the child good access to both parents.

It might be worth arriving at a compromise if you are willing to consider doing that. If your ex didn't consult you and just imposed this driving on you, I would imagine you are pretty frustrated right now, but in the bigger picture, while driving 35 miles and back is a big haul, but it sounds like less than what your ex is doing. A court might make you do half the driving! If you do reach a compromise, I would highly recommend you put it in writing.

Another thing you might consider is whether or not there is a quick flight and your child is old enough to travel unaccompanied.

I would definitely consult a lawyer if you and your ex cannot work this out. Check to find a good Texas attorney if you want to avoid the stress of filing in Colorado to enforce the order.

Good luck.