Jan 26, 2018 | Child Custody


While it is true that it is always ideal when two Rockford, Illinois, parents who happen to live apart are able to get along well enough to coordinate child custody, parenting time, and parental responsibilities in a friendly manner, sometimes this is not possible.

Unfortunately, enforcing a child custody order is not always a matter of just calling the police or the local courthouse and getting one’s child back. It is true that in extreme cases, a parent who has chosen to take custody or parenting time into his or her own hands can wind up in trouble with the local police or prosecutor.

However, authorities are just as likely to treat these matters as civil in nature and thus outside the scope of what police do.

Usually, a person is left in a child custody proceeding with having to ask the court which sets up parenting orders to hold the non-compliant parent in contempt of court. The benefit of taking this route is that the court can be a bit more flexible when it comes to imposing punishment and can, in addition to imposing fines or even jail time, also restrict visits or otherwise change its order on parenting time.

Because the rules of contempt proceedings are different, it can also be easier to hold a parent who is violating custody or parenting time rules in contempt than to convict them in a criminal case.

However, asking for a court to enforce its custody and parenting time orders takes a lot of patience, as it may be days or even weeks or months before the court will be able to resolve the issue. Moreover, since it is a civil matter, a person will be expected to prepare for the contempt case alone unless he or she chooses to invest in getting the help of an experienced family law attorney.