Can I remove joint custody if my daughter's father was arrested for firing a gun? 30 Answers as of June 20, 2013

Yesterday evening my daughter's father was arrested for firing a gun at another person. What legal action should I take to keep my daughter safe? She is 6 months old and sees him regularly, but he is not allowed any over night visits. We do have joint custody. How hard would it be for me to have joint custody removed?

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Law Office of Lenore Tsakanikas, PLLC
Law Office of Lenore Tsakanikas, PLLC | Lenore Tsakanikas
You need to file emergency orders.
Answer Applies to: Arizona
Replied: 6/20/2013
Michael Rose Attorney at Law
Michael Rose Attorney at Law | Michael Rose
You can ask for monitored visitation.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 1/9/2012
Law Office of William L Spern | William Spern
I assume the baby's father was charged with felonious assault or some similar crime. Joint custody is not the issue. You should schedule a hearing to modify visitation to supervised only with the baby's father.
Answer Applies to: Michigan
Replied: 1/9/2012
Bruning & Associates, PC
Bruning & Associates, PC | Kevin Bruning
It is difficult to change custody, but you fears are well grounded. A change of custody is quite possible if Father is convicted of the felony criminal charges.
Answer Applies to: Illinois
Replied: 1/9/2012
Reeves Law Firm, P.C.
Reeves Law Firm, P.C. | Roy L. Reeves
Please relax and think this through. In Texas, we use the term Conservatorship. Conservatorship is decision power and has nothing to do with visitation/possession. I know that seems confusing but bare with me, we divide the two in Texas. A parent can be a joint conservator (with the right to make legal decisions, take the child to the doctor, talk to school officials, etc) and still not have any possessory rights or vice-versa. The question you need to ask, is how do you further limit his access to the child. That may be possible but the thing you will have to show to the court is that he is a danger to the child. Firing a gun at another person - that is pretty dangerous conduct. I for one see your concerns, but I am not the Judge. Furthermore, what are the circumstances? If it is shown he did so in self-defense, you just lost the argument. However, if he did this while drunk or stoned . . . . Accordingly, more information is needed for assessment of the case. All that said, the way to accomplish what you seek is fairly simple (mechanically speaking). File a Petition to Modify the Parent-Child Relationship. This is the same method used to change child support, it is what relief you ask for that determines what you have to prove at trial.
Answer Applies to: Texas
Replied: 1/8/2012
    Beaulier Law Office
    Beaulier Law Office | Maury Beaulier
    The answer depends on whether the conduct impacted the child. the charge alone is not sufficient. To change custody in Minnesota, you must show that the child is endangered in the other parent's care, physically, emotionally or developmentally and that the benefit of the change outweighs any harm.
    Answer Applies to: Minnesota
    Replied: 1/7/2012
    Law Office of L. Paul Zahn
    Law Office of L. Paul Zahn | Paul Zahn
    Custody is decision making authority. I assume your are more concerned with your daughter seeing him at all at this point. If that is your concern, you can file a motion to modify the current order. It is impossible to say what the court will do without more information about the charges and the history of your case.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 1/6/2012
    Diefer Law Group, P.C.
    Diefer Law Group, P.C. | Abel Fernandez
    If he attempted to kill someone, you should go to court and ask the court to consider his conducts. You could ask for sole legal custody and have him on supervised visits.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 1/6/2012
    Dunnings Law Firm
    Dunnings Law Firm | Steven Dunnings
    Are you saying you have joint legal custody or joint physical custody? You might petition the court to request supervised parenting time for him.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 1/6/2012
    Steven Harrell, Attorney at Law | Waymon Steven Harrell
    You would need to retain an attorney, and file suit to have the custodial arrangements modified. If he is eventually convicted of the felony offense of aggravated assault, he may end up spending time in prison. A judge needs to modify his visitation rights.
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 1/6/2012
    SHAPIRO LAW GROUP | ERIC L. SHAPIRO
    You can file for a motion to modify custodial rights.
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 1/6/2012
    Michael Apicella
    Michael Apicella | Apicella Law and Mediation
    You can file a custody modification motion with the court, and include the facts regarding father's recent arrest in your supporting declaration. You can also ask for an order shortening time so you can get into court sooner to obtain a modification order. Best to hire a local family law lawyer to help you, or if you can't afford a lawyer, seek the assistance of the court's self-help center.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 1/6/2012
    Law Offices of Arlene D. Kock
    Law Offices of Arlene D. Kock | Arlene D. Kock
    File an ex parte motion to suspend visitation. Be sure declaration provides a police report and arrest number.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 1/6/2012
    The Law Offices of Robert W. Bellamy
    The Law Offices of Robert W. Bellamy | Robert W. Bellamy
    File a rule nisipetition to modify custody agreement. But your fact pattern may not suffice to obtain the modification. Seek advice of an attorney.
    Answer Applies to: Alabama
    Replied: 1/6/2012
    Neighborhood Law Office, P.C.
    Neighborhood Law Office, P.C. | Jim Underhill
    You should immediately obtain a restraining order against your husband, forbidding him to come to your home, or to be within 100 yards of you or your child. The court has a "do-it-yourself" office to help people with these kinds of orders. You go to the county court in the county in which you live. In the motion you must tell the judge that your fear for your safety and your child's safety, that is a requirement to get the order. If you say that you don't think he would hurt you or the kid, then you will not get a restraining order. I assume that your husband is still in jail. So, you can call the police department that arrested him. Tell them that you are fearing for your life and your child's life and could they get the DA to get a restraining order (this may have been done already). IF they say its up to the DA, call the victim's advocate for the DA's office and explain the situation to that person and ask them to get with the assigned DA right away. Once you have a restraining order, his parenting time ceases until the court hears a motion to dissolve the restraining order or to change parenting time. You probably want to file such a motion to restrict him to supervised parenting time only, or perhaps to end his parenting time. Like many attorneys we will sit down and review your situation with you without charge. Your best bet is to find a good lawyer who provides advice on this kind of issue on a regular basis and review your specific facts; the lawyer will be able to give you an analysis of the law and your options.
    Answer Applies to: Colorado
    Replied: 1/6/2012
    The Law Offices of Laura A. Walker | Laura A. Walker
    I would petition the Family Court for a more restrictive, maybe supervised visitation.
    Answer Applies to: Wisconsin
    Replied: 1/5/2012
    Law Office of Jane E. Ginsburg
    Law Office of Jane E. Ginsburg | Jane Ginsburg
    The issue is visitation and the safety of your child. You can ask the court to change the current court order based on your concerns for your daughter's safety.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 1/5/2012
    Warner Center Law Offices of Donald F. Conviser
    Warner Center Law Offices of Donald F. Conviser | Donald F. Conviser
    It isn't the arrest that will make a difference. It would be a conviction for assault with a deadly weapon, and/or perhaps the facts relating to his commission of that crime. You would best retain an experienced Family Law Attorney to represent you, to file an Order to Show Cause to modify child custody. You stand a good chance of removing the father's joint custodial rights due to the violent nature of the father's crime, but you will need to prove the facts, and the father has a right not to respond to questions whose answers might tend to incriminate him.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 1/5/2012
    The Law Offices of Jill Puertas LLC | Jill Puertas
    You will need to file a motion to modify with the court to ask for sole custody. In the motion you will explain why you feel it is in your child's best interest to revise the current patenting plan.
    Answer Applies to: Missouri
    Replied: 1/5/2012
    Peyton and Associates | Barbara Peyton
    In order to get joint custody changed you have to show that he is a danger to the child and him having custody is not in the child's best interests.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 1/5/2012
    Law Offices of Stephanie Lee Ehrbright, Esq.
    Law Offices of Stephanie Lee Ehrbright, Esq. | Stephanie Lee Ehrbright
    You would need to file a motion in Superior Court asking to modify the custody orders. A change in circumstance is needed for that, so list the reason is that he was arrested and you are worried about your daughter's safety around him.
    Answer Applies to: Arizona
    Replied: 1/5/2012
    John E. Kirchner, Attorney at Law
    John E. Kirchner, Attorney at Law | John Kirchner
    Probably not for that reason alone. And, since Colorado has no "joint custody" it isn't clear what you want to "remove". If you are concerned with the father being irresponsible about gun safety, that may or may not be a basis to limit or supervise his physical access to the child. The issue will solely be related to whether a single incident justifies a conclusion that father is a potential danger to an infant sufficient to warrant limitations.
    Answer Applies to: Colorado
    Replied: 1/5/2012
    David A. Browde, P.C.
    David A. Browde, P.C. | David Browde
    You can't remove joint custody, only a court can. Whether the judge in your case would likely view his alleged firing of a gun at another person to be relevant to decision making with regard to your child is not something that can be decided without a lot more information.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 1/5/2012
    Wolfstone, Panchot & Bloch, P.S., Inc.
    Wolfstone, Panchot & Bloch, P.S., Inc. | Mark Brown
    I presume from your question that there is some form of court order ("parenting plan"?) establishing the father's visitation rights. You need to file a motion to modify that court order to appropriately restrict the father's contact with your infant based on these serious developments that you have described.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 1/5/2012
    Glenn E. Tanner
    Glenn E. Tanner | Glenn E. Tanner
    In Washington control and access to your child is controlled by a parenting plan. Modify your existing plan or seek one if you don't have one.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 1/5/2012
    Kelly A. Broadbent, Esq.
    Kelly A. Broadbent, Esq. | Kelly Broadbent
    To change the custody arrangement, you would have to file a complaint for modification of the current visitation order. Where you are concerned for your child's welfare, you may be able to file an emergency motion when ou file the complaint for a temporary order to change the custody or allow only supervised visits.
    Answer Applies to: Massachusetts
    Replied: 1/5/2012
    H. Scott Basham, Attorney at Law, P.C. | H. Scott Basham
    You can file a petition to modify custody and bring his arrest to the court's attention.
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 1/5/2012
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