Family Law

questions & answers

Question: I am 16 years old and I've been through my dad's custody till I was 14 until on November 19 he died and thn my mom got custody but my older sister told her if she got half custody we could get her benefits like insurance wise so at the time I signed the papers and a year passes and my sister has taken it over board she thinks she has full custody and we only se our mom on the weekend or on breaks is that fair? And well I've done some bad things in the past an she uses that against me and my mom can she use that against my mom if my sister wants custody and do I have the right to say no?

Answer: The amount of time that a child spends with each parent or person with custody depends on the agreement that was decided by the court. If a parent violates that agreement, the parent whose parenting time is being violated may file a petition with the court, notifying the court of the alleged violation. The parent filing the petition will first have to prove that the other parent has refused without good cause to comply with a visitation or parenting time order. Then the court could find the violating parent is in contempt of court, order visitation or parenting time to make up for the missed sessions, order parent education at the violating parent's expense, order family counseling at the violating parent's expense, order civil penalties of not to exceed one hundred dollars for each violation, order both parents to participate in mediation or some other appropriate form of alternative dispute resolution at the violating parent's expense, or make any other order that may promote the best interests of the child or children involved. (A.R.S. 25-414). What the court decides to do is the court’s choice and will depend on the family’s situation.

There are several factors that the court uses to determine who should have custody of a child. One of the factors is the child’s wishes depending on the age of the child. However, this is not the only factor that the court uses and the amount of weight that the court gives this factor is again up to its own discretion and will be looked at together with the other factors. Some of the other factors are: the past present and future relationship between the child and the parent, the mental and physical health of all people involved, the child’s adjustment to home, school and community, whether there has been domestic violence or child abuse, and which parent is more likely to allow the child meaningful contact with the other parent. (A.R.S. 25-403). Ultimately, it is in the court’s discretion to determine what is the best interest of the child when determining which parent should have custody and how parenting time should be divided.

QUESTIONS

  • I am 16 years old and I've been through my dad's custody till I was 14 until on November 19 he died and thn my mom got custody but my older sister told her if she got half custody we could get her benefits like insurance wise so at the time I signed the papers and a year passes and my sister has taken it over board she thinks she has full custody and we only se our mom on the weekend or on breaks is that fair? And well I've done some bad things in the past an she uses that against me and my mom can she use that against my mom if my sister wants custody and do I have the right to say no?

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