How To Deal With An Inconvenient Custody Order

Question About A Custody Order

In Utah parent time and both parents agree to meet halfway to pick up and drop off kid, but… If both parents agree to meet halfway on certain days and certain times listed in divorce decree and the non-custodial parent doesn’t show up or give at least a several hour notice he can’t be there, does the custodial parent have to continue to show up at the designated days and times? I don’t want to be in violation of the order, but I don’t need to spend the time and money going out of the way, not to mention the disappointment my children would experience each time.


You need to follow the divorce decree until it is changed by the parties’ agreement or by the court. However, things may be different if the other parent does not show up two or three times in a row. Then, you may have a basis to claim that he or she has acquiesced in a change to the decree. You may want to put them on notice that you are willing to meet as indicated by the Decree. But you won’t be bringing the children unless they give timely notice that they will come and exercise parent time. Sometimes you may need to go to court to modify the Divorce Decree.  This happens when the other parent demands you follow the decree and won’t agree to your proposal of giving notice.

If you need to go to court, the court commissioner can give you a hearing usually within 30 days on a temporary order for a Petition to Modify the Divorce Decree. In case you need to go to court at some point, there are a few things to document. I would document your attempts to contact the other parent, your communication that you are present at the pick up location and even take a dated picture of you there by the landmark. There are also potential complications with a request for temporary orders under Civil Procedure Rule 106 (b) (1), so you may want to consult an attorney if the other parent does not acquiesce to your proposed requirement that he or she give notice before you have to show up.