Close

Saturday, 9 January

What is Custodial Interference

As a child Scott Frank became a pawn in his mothers games to prevent his father from seeing him during and following their divorce.  You can read his story here.   This experience would give him the drive and passion to work for changes in the laws surrounding visitation and intentional violation of visitation orders with the the success of bills being passed in 2004.  Below find out what is custodial interference and how the laws were changed.

The below Revised Statues were bills that Scott Frank President of Louisiana Coalition for Families and Children passed into Law in the 2004 Louisiana Legislature Session.

RS 9:346
§346. Intentional violations of visitation order A. Where a parent, guardian, defacto custodian, or another person exercising care, custody, and control over a minor child willfully and intentionally violates a provision of the order relating to visitation, without good cause, a court having jurisdiction to enforce the judicial order may, upon motion of the party whose time was lost: (1) Award to the party whose time was lost additional visitation at least equal to the amount of time lost as specified in R.S. 13:4611; and (2) Award the party whose time was lost that party’s costs and a reasonable attorney fee as specified in R.S. 9:375. B. A pattern of willful and intentional violation of this Section, without good cause, may be grounds to allow a party to move for modification of a custody or visitation decree. C. This Section applies to judicial orders involving either sole or joint custody. Acts 2004, No. 519, §1.

RS 9:347
§347. Parenting interference
A person is in violation of parenting interference when the person on one or more occasions intentionally obstructs visitation time in a manner so as to violate R.S. 9:346.
Acts 2004, No. 519, §1.

RS 13:4611
§4611. Punishment for contempt of court
Except as otherwise provided for by law:

(1) The supreme court, the courts of appeal, the district courts, family courts, juvenile courts and the city courts may punish a person adjudged guilty of a contempt of court therein, as follows:

(a) For a direct contempt of court committed by an attorney at law, by a fine of not more than one hundred dollars, or by imprisonment for not more than twenty-four hours, or both; and, for any subsequent contempt of the same court by the same offender, by a fine of not more than two hundred dollars, or by imprisonment for not more than ten days, or both;

(b) For disobeying or resisting a lawful restraining order, or preliminary or permanent injunction, by a fine of not more than one thousand dollars, or by imprisonment for not more than twelve months, or both, except in juvenile courts and city courts, in which punishment may be a fine of not more than one thousand dollars or imprisonment for not more than six months, or both.

(c) For a deliberate refusal to perform an act which is yet within the power of the offender to perform, by imprisonment until he performs the act; and

(d) For any other contempt of court, including disobeying an order for the payment of child support or spousal support or an order for the right of custody or visitation, by a fine of not more than five hundred dollars, or imprisonment for not more than three months, or both.

(e) In addition to or in lieu of the above penalties, when a parent has violated a visitation order, the court may order any or all of the following:

(i) Require one or both parents to allow additional visitation days to replace those denied the non-custodial parent.

(ii) Require one or both parents to attend a parent education course.

(iii) Require one or both parents to attend counseling or mediation.

(iv) Require the parent violating the order to pay all court costs and reasonable attorney fees of the other party.

(f) A pattern of willful and intentional violation of this Section, without good cause, may constitute a material change in circumstances warranting a modification of an existing custody or visitation order.

(2) Justices of the peace may punish a person adjudged guilty of a direct contempt of court by a fine of not more than fifty dollars, or imprisonment in the parish jail for not more than twenty-four hours, or both.

(3) The court or justice of the peace, when applicable, may suspend the imposition or the execution of the whole or any part of the sentence imposed and place the defendant on unsupervised probation or probation supervised by a probation office, agency, or officer designated by the court or justice of the peace, other than the division of probation and parole of the Department of Public Safety and Corrections. When the court or justice of the peace places a defendant on probation, the court or the justice of the peace may impose any specific conditions reasonably related to the defendant’s rehabilitation, including but not limited to the conditions of probation as set forth in Code of Criminal Procedure Article 895. A term of probation shall not exceed the length of time a defendant may be imprisoned for the contempt, except in the case of contempt for disobeying an order for the payment of child support or spousal support or an order for the right of custody or visitation, when the term of probation may extend for a period of up to two years.

Added by Acts 1960, No. 32, §6, eff. Jan. 1, 1961. Amended by Acts 1964, No. 241, §1; Acts 1972, No. 664, §1; Acts 1985, No. 43, §1; Acts 1991, No. 508, §2; Acts 1993, No. 429, §1; Acts 1995, No. 517, §1; Acts 1999, No. 57, §1; Acts 2001, No. 425, §2, eff. June 15, 2001; Acts 2004, No. 520, §1