I am a divorced father of two boys, a nine-year-old and a seven-year-old. My ex-wife told me she is taking our boys on vacation to Puerto Rico.
I am opposed to this trip. Our divorce decree clearly states in the custody and related matters section that “Neither party shall be permitted to temporarily remove the children from the United States of America without written consent and approval of the other parent.”
I have never given her verbal or written approval to take them on this trip. What are my options here, and what course of action should I take to prevent her from taking them?
I do not practice law in your state. Therefore, I cannot inform you as to the specific laws of that state and can only provide you with general tips on divorce.
Once a divorce decree is entered with the court, it is binding. You have a few steps you can take to bring your ex-wife’s actions to the attention of the court.
First, you could file a contempt action against her. A contempt is filed by one party when the other is not obeying the rules that have been set forth by the court, or when they are not following an agreement that the parties have entered into.
When a contempt action is filed, there is a hearing that is set. The parties present evidence showing why the other is in contempt, or why they themselves are not in contempt.
Your second option may be to file for an emergency injunction that would keep her from leaving the country with the children. If an application for an injunction is made, it will bring the issue to the attention of the court. If granted, it would prevent her from taking them on the trip.
Remember, I am unable to provide you with anything more than divorce tips for men, so please consult a domestic litigation attorney in your area to obtain specific advice as to the laws in your state and how they impact your potential case.