My parenting plan and custody is set, yet my children live with their father whom is their primary custodial parent. I am out of state and fly back every 3rd weekend to see them. I am having issues with Parent Alienation. My son that is 12 is refusing to go places with me and hating me and saying things kids his age should not know about the divorce. I am worried that he has anxiety disorder due to issues from the divorce or that are happening in his current house. His father is taking him to counseling that he never disclosed to me..... and I want him seen by a psychiatric specialist. Is there a way I can get it court ordered that he see a child psychiatrist for an evaluation to help him?
You need to carefully review your Parenting Plan to answer your questions. Does it provide for joint decision making on medical decisions? If so, the child should only be in counseling currently if you have agreed. If you have not given consent, father could be found in contempt. That may be counter productive however. You may want to talk to the father and/or counselor to see if you can be a part of that counseling. You may also want to see if the counselor recommends a psychiatric specialist.
If you cannot agree about the specialist, you then need to follow the Dispute Resolution process. If you cannot resolve it through that, you could file a motion for the evaluation. The court will be more receptive to therapy than they will for an evaluation. The court will not authorize a tool to give you ammunition to modify a parenting plan before an action has been filed. If however you can show it is for the child's benefit, the court may be more receptive.
What does your plan say about non-emergency (elective) medical care?
If it is a joint decision, your ex may be held in contempt for violating that plan provision and acting on his own [RCW 26.09.160]. Further, if you want him to see a specialist you need to ask your ex and then, if he disagrees, use the dispute resolution provisions of your plan (usually section V of a Plan) [RCW 26.09.184}. If that is not successful, or the other side refuses, you go to court and seek a court order/instruction allowing this (and if the other side refused to mediate, they could be sanctioned and/or ordered to pay your fees for frustration of the dispute resolution making provisions of the plan).
If you do not have decision making, ask your ex first. If he says no, then you go to court. However, I'd still try to mediate this issue in the hope you could reach agreement, but I do not think you are required to use it is you have no decision making power.
In either case, I'd consult with a lawyer to help you out.
I agree with both previous attorneys and their advice as to next steps. The terms of your parenting plan control. If there is joint decisionmaking and this did not occur, then you may well have the basis for a contempt motion. The issue however seems to go deeper and I think you will be well-served and your child well-served to get to the bottom of the problems you and your son are having. I believe you should consult with a family law attorney in the county of the action to determine the best course of action and the viability of obtaining counseling for your son. If you have a better sense if the issues, the law, and possible actions, you will be able to weigh your options.
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