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Decades Of Litigation Experience

What is an emergency?

| Feb 4, 2021 | Family Law |

Is this an Emergency? Decoding what the Court’s will hear on an Immediate Basis.

Generally, what constitutes an emergency is common sense. Is someone bleeding? Is someone missing? Is something on fire? But in the world of divorce and family law, “emergencies” come in all shapes in sizes. So, what do Court’s give the greatest consideration to when an attorney brings an emergency application before them?

Custody and Visitation interference, meaning, is your spouse keeping your child from you? Are they interfering with your regularly scheduled visitation? This is a big deal to the Courts. In evaluating who to award custody to, Courts consider several factors, including but not limited to, what is in the best interest of the child, what the child wants (if they’re old enough to express that opinion) and they consider which parent is going to foster a relationship between the child and the other parent. If your spouse is doing just about everything in their power to keep your child away, including saying demeaning things about you to the child, the Court will act immediately and swiftly to correct it.

Next up, financial support. Did your spouse up and leave and cut you off from the bank accounts? You have children to feed and cloth, and a roof to keep over their heads. Again, the Court does not take kindly to this type of behavior. Your attorneys can file an immediate motion to receive a court ordered award of support.

What is not an emergency? You need a new cellphone. You are living with your spouse and they touched your leftovers just to annoy you. They’re breathing too loud. You don’t like the way they let the kids have dessert every night.

Divorce is hard, and there are lots of areas to navigate. Its important to prioritize what you need by way of court intervention, and do your best to understand what constitutes a real emergency and what is something that is beyond the court’s power. The Court cannot say your spouse shouldn’t see the children because they let them over indulge in sweets. At custody trial however, maybe that is a factor for the Courts to consider if the parent is acting in the child’s best interest. Just because it’s not an emergency, doesn’t mean its not important, and that is also something to be cognizant of.