Can My Children Refuse to Visit Me?

Divorce can have a profound impact on children and many often struggle to cope with the aftermath and the ways in which it alters daily life. In some cases, it may even affect the relationship they have with their parents, especially if they believe one parent deserves most of the blame for the changes their family endured. If your children want to refuse visitation, you may be wondering if there is a legal obligation to still enforce it.

When a Child Wants to Refuse Visitation

The fact is that we force children to do what is best for them every day. You make sure they go to school, whether they like it or not. Similarly, the legal answer is, no, your children cannot refuse visitation because it is not up to them. Your former spouse is legally obligated to comply with the court order and must make the children reasonably available for visits.

That said, it may not always be possible to make the child available for visits. For example, if the child is very ill, it might be best to reschedule visitation for another time. However, this must be communicated to the other parent. You should never leave your co-parent wondering where the children are and why the custody order is not being followed.

Of course, just because the order must be enforced does not mean you should ignore why your children are trying to refuse visitation. Talk to them about what they are feeling and try to get to the bottom of it. It may be a difficult conversation to have, but it is important to understand where this negative perception of you is coming from. If your co-parent is trying to alienate the children from you, this may even be a matter you can bring to court.

Discuss the Details of Your Child Custody Case with an Experienced Family Lawyer Today!

If you are dealing with a difficult child custody matter, the knowledgeable legal team at Family Law San Diego can advocate on your behalf and advise you of your best legal options. With more than 200 years of combined legal experience, you can feel confident in our ability to assist you and obtain the best outcome for your case.

Reach out to our dedicated team today at (619) 577-4900 to schedule a consultation with one of our family law attorneys and get started on your case and learn more about what we can do for you!