This is the first post in a series of articles discussing how Las Vegas, Nevada parents should handle child custody or visitation disputes during the COVID-19 pandemic. The novel coronavirus has impacted nearly every aspect of our daily lives, including work, school, and more. Coping with remote learning, working from home, and other interruptions, has forced families with shared custody to consider changes to caregiving arrangements and visitation schedules. In addition, concerns about exposure to the virus or disagreements about virus-related precautions have led to disputes about shared-parenting. In this series, I will address how Las Vegas families should manage custody and visitation disputes related to the pandemic. I will also review how COVID-19 may impact the Clark County Family Court’s view of such matters. If you need assistance, contact my office today to speak with a lawyer.
This series will address the following key topics:
- The importance of flexibility when handling a COVID-related visitation dispute outside of the legal system
- Avoiding self-help when addressing a child visitation dispute during the pandemic
- When Court intervention may be necessary to handle a coronavirus visitation dispute
- How the Court may view requests for modification of a custody agreement during COVID-19
Families struggling to agree on visitation issues during the pandemic should understand these issues for several reasons. First, not every disagreement about visitation schedules should require legal action to reach a resolution. Understanding that the dynamics between co-parents differs from family to family, all parties involved must remember that cooperating and being reasonable can help diffuse a difficult situation. This is especially true in these unprecedented times when many of the underlying reasons for altering schedules are outside of our control. Second, parents who cannot resolve their dispute with their co-parent should avoid engaging in self-help to address the issue. For instance, violating a custody order by refusing to return a child to their other parent may result in negative legal consequences, such as being held in contempt of court or the loss of parental rights. Third, after exhausting all reasonable attempts to reach agreement, it may be necessary to initiate legal action to enforce or formally modify a visitation order. It is important to understand when it is appropriate to take such steps. Finally, the Court’s review of custody issues raised as a result of COVID-19 may be slightly different than other “normal” family law matters. Parents should be aware of how the pandemic may impact their case.
I am a child custody attorney with significant experience representing Las Vegas parents in such matters. I understand the additional stress COVID-19 has placed on many of my clients and their families and am ready to assist those who have been affected. If you need help, contact my office today to schedule a consultation with a lawyer.