Question: My son is divorced and has standard visitation with his own son. The mother and her new husband took my grandson on a trip across the country. My concern is that my grandson said he and his stepbrothers were allowed to ride in a trailer on the way back from New York, in the trailer they purchased there. This is dangerous and illegal. Can we deny her to have the child back due to imminent danger?
Answer: First, I must preface my answer that I do not practice in Oklahoma and you should consult an attorney in your state. That being said, if there is a court order, no one can interfere with the court order. Your son should contact the mother immediately and object to the mother allowing the child to ride in the trailer. Your son should also contact law enforcement and inform them of the mother’s behavior.
If there is a pattern where the mother puts the child in these dangerous circumstances, your son should consult a domestic litigation attorney regarding changing the custody and placement order. If this was an isolated incident and the mother ceases this behavior, you may or may not have an argument for a change in custody and placement. He should be prepared to inform the attorney of any issues the mother may raise about his conduct that could affect the child. Ultimately, the terms of your son’s current custody arrangements and the specific requirements of the laws of your state as to timelines and criteria for custody reviews would need to be reviewed. A domestic litigation attorney in Oklahoma would be able to assist you.
Erica Christian is an Associate Attorney in the Milwaukee, Wisconsin office of Cordell & Cordell, P.C. She is licensed to practice law in the state of Wisconsin. She is a member of the Wisconsin Bar Association, the Family Law Section and the Children’s Law Section.