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Pending a case hearing, can a parent take a child out of state for a couple of days?

Vista, CA |

The other parent has temporarily has 72% custody and I have 28%. The other parent is taking our child to another state for a family emergency for a couple of days. I have visitation on Wed, Fri-Sun. Our child will be away on Wed and coming back Friday evening. Can the other parent take our child away for a couple of days pending a move-away case as well as divorce/custody case?

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Attorney answers 3


Since the parent IS taking the child out of the state without your permission, he/she obviously has the physical ability to do so. The real question is, will there be any consequences for that parent's actions? The answer to that question is maybe. Some courts will get fairly upset about such behavior, however, if there is a genuine emergency, the court will most likely require the custodial parent to allow you to make up the lost time. It sounds like you will only lose one evening. Most likely the court will admonish both parents. The custodial parent will be told to cooperate and you will likely be told to be a little more understanding. This is assuming the whole denial of visitation was not orchestrated to play games with the visitation schedule.



Thank you very much. I actually emailed saying it was ok. I am very understanding especially when it comes to family emergencies/deaths. I asked the other parent to make up the time whenever they get back.


It depends on what stage your case is at. On the back of the Summons there is an order that neither party can take the child out of the State except on certain conditions. If you have a Judgment then you need to look at it to see if it says anything about taking the child out of state.


After considering the impact of the restraining orders, the next question the court may ask is if you had a legitimate reason to object to the missed visitation (Wed. evening). As long as it was a true emergency that required the other parent's attendance, the court is most likely to respect your insistence on make-up time, as opposed to an objection to taking the child out of state.

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