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Common problems parents have in child custody cases

Maryland parents who are going through a divorce may struggle to make and keep child custody, support and visitation agreements. Conflict between them can bleed over into attempts to make and fulfill visitation agreements, and this could lead to more time in court trying to force one parent to comply.

An issue that may arise is that one parent might be unreliable about turning up for visitation. Children need consistency during the upheaval of divorce. Non-custodial parents might be struggling to balance time with their children with other aspects of their life, but it is necessary to find a way to create a visitation schedule that takes that balance into account. Parents who miss visitation time might be given make-up time, but there might also be legal consequences such as community service or fines.

Parental alienation occurs when one parent interferes in the other parent's access to the child. The parent might not allow agreed-upon phone calls or visitation to occur. Parents in this situation should document each missed visit or communication with the other parent. Most likely, they will have to turn to the court system to solve the problem.

When separated or divorced parents who are in conflict go to court, the judge makes a decision that is based upon the best interests of the child. Usually, it is believed that children benefit from contact with both parents although there may be exceptions in cases where issues like domestic violence or substance abuse are present. If possible, negotiating with the other parent may be more likely to produce a result that satisfies everyone. A parent might want to have an attorney's assistance in attempting to come up with a child custody, support and visitation situation that works best.

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