My estranged spouse and I are court-ordered to exchange our children at a halfway point. My spouse has refused to acquire a drivers license and uses this as an excuse to not bring our children for visitations or will regularly ask my parents to drive them to and from the meeting point, 150 miles from my parents' home. I tried to work with her previously, but she refused until everything was inconvenient for her. I am still waiting on the signed copy of the court orders from the judge. I want to see our children, but I'm not sure if it will hurt my divorce and attempts at custody by letting her continue to get away with not taking responsibility and having my parents do all her work.
Your decision is more of a personal decision than a legal matter.
The legal aspect is that you can enforce whatever provisions that the court has ordered, unless and until they are modified. The personal aspect is whether or not you think it is more advantageous to play nice, and deal with the additional effort, or become adversarial and fight this out in court.
It comes down to a risk/reward analysis. The court will not punish you for enforcing the order if that is what you are worried about. Your estranged spouse would need to go to court and have the order modified, and explain why she cannot get a drivers license. My opinion is to always do whatever is best for the children, as long as it is reasonable, but sometimes courts have to be involved when opposing parties are causing burdens simply to be vindictive and manipulative.
As someone viewing from afar, and not knowing the nuances of the situation, cannot give a definitive answer. You sound like a caring and concerned father and I wish the best for you.
Any answer given by me on this website is not reliable legal advice because it is based on the limited information posted by the asker. The answer specifically does not establish any attorney/client relationship and is meant solely to give general advice with the hope that the asker has a better understanding of how to proceed with their legal issue.
The longer you wait, the harder it will be to convince a judge that this is a real issue for you. Your ex may be unable to get a license, so you may need to have the orders rewritten to reflect that fact. It ihas been my experience that judges are not overly sympathetic to parties who do not follow their orders. At minimum, you need to document what's going on. That could take the form of letters from you or your attorney, or statements from your parents about what they have had to do to make the visitation occur. Whenever there is a breach of the orders of the court, I recommend the intervention of a qualified attorney to assist. For the time being, you may have to continue to make arrangements to be certain you get your visitation. Again, the situation cannot be resolved on a website. Definitely, definitely, document everything that is going on. It will come up later.
This response is intended as GENERAL INFORMATION only; it is vital for you to speak with a lawyer for case-specific advice.
It depends on what the actual order states and if you addressed her lack of license in the court orders. Also, if she didn't have a license when the orders were made, why would there be a 1/2 way exchange?
You might need to go back to court for a modification of the orders. I would also be concerned about her "driving" when the children are alone with her. Do they just stay at her house and not drive anywhere for the visit?
Dawn M. Saenz is licensed to practice law in the State of California and the California Supreme Court, and cannot give advice about the laws of other jurisdictions. All comments on this site are intended for informational purposes only, and are not intended to constitute legal advice, create an attorney-client relationship, or solicit business. No posts or comments on this site are in any way confidential. Each case is unique. Information not contained in these posts may create significant exceptions to the advice provided in any response. You are advised to have counsel at all stages of any legal proceeding, and to speak with your own lawyer in private to get advice about your specific situation.
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