How Do States Enforce Visitation Interference?

visitation interferenceVisitation interference is pervasive affecting approximately 6 million children nationwide, yet most states disregard enforcing court-ordered parenting time schedules.

The law is swift and severe when child support is unpaid, but when a father is denied access to his child there are few remedies available.

However, Illinois is one of the latest states to protect visitation orders following the recent passage of legislation that applies many of the sanctions available in non-payment of child support cases to those of visitation and access interference.

The “Steve Watkins Bill” is currently awaiting Gov. Pat Quinn’s signature to become law. Sanctions would include driver’s license suspension, fines, probation, and possible imprisonment.

Currently, only five states suspend licenses (Michigan, Missouri, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, and Utah) and just six states incarcerate for visitation interference (Iowa, Louisiana, Michigan, Nevada, Pennsylvania, and Texas).

How States Enforce Visitation Interference

• Some states define visitation interference synonymously with custody interference (Idaho, Texas, Washington).

• Visitation interference is grounds for suspending alimony or maintenance (New York).

• Penalty fees up to $500 (Minnesota, Pennsylvania).

• Penalty fees can be up to $1,000 (Montana, Michigan).

• Suspension of licenses (Michigan, Missouri, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Utah).

• Incarceration (Iowa, Louisiana, Michigan, Nevada, Pennsylvania, Texas).

• Change in custody (Indiana, Louisiana, Maryland, Mississippi, Vermont, Washington).

• The posting of a bond (Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Oklahoma).

• Child Support Abatement (Missouri).

Read Related Articles:

Visitation Rights

Visitation Interference Stats

• Approximately 50% of mothers see no value in the father‘s continued contact with his children.

• Mothers may prevent visits to retaliate against the fathers for problems in their marital or post marital relationship.

• 40% of mothers reported that they had interfered with the non-custodial father‘s visitation on at least one occasion, to punish their ex-spouse.

• The courts’ failure to enforce or expand visitation agreements are a frequently mentioned complaint.

• Interviewing more than 100 children researchers concluded that in most cases it was true that visitation was blocked, and that there was no justification for it.

For additional facts and source information, please view the PDF provided by Robert Ferrer, who researched the issue for Illinois Fathers.

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11 Comments on "How Do States Enforce Visitation Interference?"

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OVER IT!
11 months 15 days ago
So what are our options? We see and are well aware of the corruption and incompetence. Black lives matter so we riot. Fathers rights matter so what do we do? Its only a matter of time before a father loses it, then in the aftermath people will see the problem, without changing it. What do we do? I’m only one person, but with every father or mother going through the same issues in any state we would be many. Flooding the government, courts and media with petitions, motions, lawsuits and even letters simply stating the issue, at some point they… Read more »
Calista
1 year 1 day ago
The above article is not valid. They have done several studies on why mothers flee with their children and it has been noted over and over that in the majority of cases when a mother flees or denies parenting time it is because they are trying to protect their children. In these same studies it has also been noted that a common ploy in family court is for an abusive father to claim parental alienation. It has been noted in these same studies that many father’s groups are formed by fathers that have a history of abuse. We have a… Read more »
a-ryan
1 year 1 month ago
SO, WHAT ARE YOUR THOUGHTS ON VALID DOMESTIC VIOLENCE AND CHILD ABUSE CASES?!?! IS IT THE FATHERS “RIGHT” TO HAVE ACESS TO CHILDREN THAT HE PHYSICALLY AND SEXUALLY ABUSES? IS THE EX-WIFE “RETALIATORY” IF THE FATHER WAS ARRESTED MANY TIMES FOR SEVERALLY BEATING AND EVENTUALLY TRYING TO KILL THE MOTHER? A FATHER THAT COULDN’T EVEN BEHAVE WHILE ON SUPERVISED PROBATION, AND WHEN A NCO IS IN PLACE. AND I AM REFERRING TO CASES THAT HAVE SOLID EVIDENCE, LONG PAPER TRAILS, THE FATHER WAS FOUND GUILTY OF DOMESTIC BATTERY IN THE PRESENCE OF HIS CHILDREN. WHAT THEN GUYS??? IS IT FAIR… Read more »
Traci Larson
1 year 10 months ago

with holding visitation
For all of you out there that are saying it is always the dad that has visits with held, let me break the news there are dads that are with holding visits just as much as the moms are. There are not only dead beat dads there are aslo dead beat moms. Just saying

DKH.... SAME STORY DIFFERENT CHANNEL
2 years 5 months ago

Have the Judge appoint a DEPUTY from Division of Family Services
I had this problem for years… I got the idea to have her agree to a Deputy from division of Family Services to be an unbiased observer, your lawyer could make it seem like it’s her and her lawyers idea.

The first time after we were appointed the Deputy, I called and she immedietly called my ex and I never had a problem with visition from that moment on… and this was after 8 years of in court, slap the ex’s hand and repeat…..
GOOD LUCK

Disgusted with the system
3 years 7 days ago

Courts have contempt for visitation rights
Judges refuse to enforce vistation rights. Non custodial parents have to PAY a lawyer to get visitation rights. Half the time judges don’t enforce them or slap the parent refusing visitation on the wrist. The system is unfair and corrupt. A total joke. I hope a higher power will in time deal with these gutless judges.

Daddio
3 years 1 month ago

I have dealt with this sh!t for the past 4 years and it only gets worse. In my opinion the courts care absolutely ZERO about a father’s rights and visitation schedule NONE!

3 years 5 months ago
Visitation NightMareWe are in a position that was at one time the exception. We have custody of my husbands four children. (three of them are now 18 and older) Mom has decided not to visit, not to follow the court ordered visitation or even work with us when our schedules conflict. Bio mother refuses her visitation then likes to go all over the web and play the victim. She loves to say that she had visitation withheld but that is far from the truth. We have always tried to work with visitation including having the children read for her to… Read more »
alain smithee
3 years 7 months ago

Courts don’t enforce visitation because there is no profit in it.

Under the Child Support and Performance Act, states are rewarded for increasing child support collections, and one of the ways that they do that is to restrict our access to our children.

Child support isn’t about the children anymore.

It’s about profit, power, greed, and control for the state.

Angy
3 years 11 months ago
Pro Per in CAForced to be a pro per in court due to lack of funds. As non-custodial parent I have been fighting to remain in my daughter’s life. CA allowed father to move out of state. He has been in violation of court orders for the past 6 yrs. CA has never found him in contempt and has never enforced the order. 6 volumes of court docket, judge blamed me for it. All court hearings were to enforce or violation of orders. To make a long story short, CA now relinquished jurisdiction to WA state. CA got tired of… Read more »
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