Spending time with your child is very important, not only for you but for your child too. When an ex’s family interferes with the custody schedule in Washington, it can be a difficult situation to navigate. While it may be tempting to make decisions out of anger or frustration, there are steps you can take to protect yourself and your rights as a parent.
What you need to do
First, understand that any interference with your custody schedule is illegal in Washington State, and therefore, you should not tolerate it. However, before taking legal action, consider talking with your ex about the issue. Let them know how much value you place on spending quality time with your child and how upsetting it is when their family interferes with that.
If the behavior continues, document instances of interference. This includes keeping records of phone calls, emails, text messages and other interactions between yourself and the family members in question, as well as noting examples of interference and disruption to visitation times.
Depending on the severity of the situation, it may be necessary to consider other options to deal with the matter. You could file a motion with the court, asking for enforcement of your child custody order. This might include seeking a modification to the child custody schedule or requesting the judge to hold the other parent in contempt. Alternatively, the court may issue an injunction or protection order to prevent further interference from the ex-spouse’s family.
No matter what steps are necessary to protect your rights as a parent, it’s important to remember that your child’s best interests should always come first when dealing with issues related to custody schedules in Washington State. And it is in their best interest and your right as well to be present in their life. However, you may need to carefully navigate the situation to avoid making errors that will only hurt your case, like getting angry and lashing out before your ex, their family and your child.