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Under prior law, the primary custodial parent had the presumptive right to relocate to another geographical location with his or her children.  However, under recent case law, that trend is changing.  The non-custodial parent now has the right to challenge that decision, and to make a showing that  relocation is not in the children’s best interest. The burden is on the non-custodial parent to show that relocation would constitute a significant determent to the children. Judges have the  widest possible discretion to determine if the children will be allowed to move away with their primary custodial parent, or if the custody order should be modified and the child should remain in California with the other parent.



The factors that a court will consider in reaching this decision include:  1) the age of the children, 2) their relationship with both parents, 3) the reason for the move, 4) the distance of the move, 5) the extent to which both parents have been cooperative with one another, and, 6) the children’s preference, depending upon their age.  Again, a court will look favorably upon a parent who has previously allowed frequent and regular contact with the other parent, and who encourages the children to have a relationship with the other parent.  Move-away cases are among the most difficult and complex in family law, and require a skilled attorney with a strong grasp of the law.


Criminal Protective Order


Types of Restraining Orders

Restraining orders are different depending on the relationship of the parties involved, and depending on which branch of the court issues them.  In criminal court, a Criminal Protective Order (CPO) may be issued at the arraignment based solely upon the allegations before the court.


Domestic Violence

In family court, a Domestic Violence Restraining Order (DVRO) can be issued on a temporary basis for approximately 21 days, pending a hearing to determine its validity for permanency.  The burden of proof is very low, and the court may make other orders on ancillary issues, such as child custody, support, and property control.  A DVRO that is challenged can take several hearings to resolve.  A DVRO requires that the parties had some sort of dating, marital, or familial relationship.


Civil Harassment

A Civil Harassment Restraining Order (CHRO) may be issued on a temporary basis for approximately 21 days, pending a hearing to determine its validity and permanency, and requires a substantially higher burden of proof.  A Civil Harassment Restraining Order does not require any familial or other special relationship, and typical parties to a CHRO are neighbors and former friends.  



How Orders are Enforced


In general, disregard of a family law order can lead to court action. California courts can take action when a willful violation of a court order, known as contempt of court, occurs.  Contempt of court orders can be issued for failure to comply with child support, spousal support, and marital property orders.


Restraining Orders

Some of the potential penalties of contempt of court are fines and jail time. If you have a temporary or permanent restraining order, and you feel threatened by the "restrained" party, your first call should be to the police - they will enforce the order.


Custody, Support, Alimony

Enfocing child custody, child support, alimony or other common court orders is not so simple. There is no substitute for the advice and counsel of an experienced family law attorney. 






Enforcement of Court Orders

Divorce may appear to be the end of your family battle with your ex-spouse and the end of all legal disputes. Termination of a marriage, however, is only the beginning of the legal complications you may face, especially if you share children with your ex-spouse.  After divorce, your ex-spouse may violate the court order which impacts your financial, emotional, or relational life.  Whether he or she has taken visitation rights on their own initiative or has failed to provide spousal support, you can pursue legal action.  Enforcement of a court order is a legal action that can take place after your ex-spouse has violated the divorce agreement.  To enforce your court order, you should speak with a San Diego County family law attorney to pursue a successful case outcome.


Divorce Judgment Violations

Receiving a favorable settlement during divorce does not go far unless the other party obliges. In California, the legal system depends on having orders closely followed by parties that are under this regulation. If a court order has been violated, you can take legal action to enforce this demand. Various circumstances may require a court order to be enforced, including failure to:

  • Pay child support

  • Pay spousal support

  • Reimburse healthcare expenses

  • Follow child custody orders

  • Abide by visitation orders

  • Comply with property orders

  • Comply with life insurance orders

Enforcing Court Orders
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