When a couple with children files for
divorce, the divorce cannot be finalized until the couple reaches a divorce agreement.
In addition to debt and property division, the divorce agreement will
address matters relating to the couple’s children, such as child
support, child custody, and medical expenses.
Once a child custody order is in effect, both parents are expected to adhere
to the agreement. However, for some divorcing parents this is easier said
than done. It is not unusual for a parent to veer away from a child custody
arrangement. When this is done knowingly and intentionally, it can cause
a lot of upset on the other parent’s behalf.
Divorce attorneys often see this when a non-custodial parent fails to pay
child support. In an effort to punish the parent for not paying, the custodial
parent won’t let the non-custodial parent see his or her children.
Or, it can be something else. Perhaps the parents got into a disagreement
and to manipulate the non-custodial parent, the custodial parent uses
the children as pawns. Sometimes, non-custodial parents feel completely
helpless when they’re denied access to their children, but under
Pennsylvania law, they do have legal options.
Contempt for Noncompliance of a Child Custody Order
Section 5323(g)(1) of the Pennsylvania Statutes, it reads: “A party who willfully fails
to comply with any custody order may, as prescribed by general rule, be
adjudged in contempt.” If a parent is in contempt for failing to follow a
child custody order, they face the following penalties:
- Up to six months in jail.
- A fine not to exceed $500.
- Attorney fees and costs.
A driver license suspension under
In the absence of physical or emotional abuse, a child should have access
to two loving parents in his or her life. It is not fair to the child
or the other parent to deny such access, especially if the reason for
the denial is over child support arrears. Since parents have a history
of not following child custody orders, the state has enacted laws to penalize
parents who violate such orders as outlined above.
Successful Co-Parenting After Divorce
If you are interested in filing a low-cost divorce in Pennsylvania
for only $219, please
contact Cairns Law Offices to get started!