Can my ex wife stop my daughter from getting a blood transfusion? 26 Answers as of June 11, 2013

My 15 year old daughter lives with me. She needs a blood transfusion because her hemoglobin is low. Can my ex-wife who lives in Florida legally stop me from allowing this because of religious beliefs.

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Warner Center Law Offices of Donald F. Conviser
Warner Center Law Offices of Donald F. Conviser | Donald F. Conviser
Don't tell her. If she already knows about it and tries to interfere with the transfusion, file an Ex Parte Application in the Divorce Case for emergency relief seeking an Order authorizing the transfusion andrestraining your ex-wife from interfering with the transfusion; to be safe, also seek, in the alternative, an Order Shortening Time for the Court to hear an Order to Show Cause [OSC] for the above-noted relief, in case the Courtmight require a Noticed hearing providing your wife the opportunty to respond to your OSC.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 9/7/2011
John E. Kirchner, Attorney at Law
John E. Kirchner, Attorney at Law | John Kirchner
There is no easy answer to that question. The first question is to determine what the court order governing custody and decision making authority says. The second question starts with where you and the daughter are now living because that is where the mother would have to seek a court order to prevent you from authorizing the transfusion, provided you have legal authority to make that kind of medical decision. The court will have to consider why mother objects and the potential harm from not allowing the transfusion. Generally, if denying the transfusion will present a serious health risk to the child, a judge will probably not prohibit the transfusion but that is not necessarily always true.
Answer Applies to: Colorado
Replied: 9/7/2011
Reeves Law Firm, P.C.
Reeves Law Firm, P.C. | Roy L. Reeves
Read your child support orders. If your order give you the right to make medical decisions then then short answer is "no, she cannot". She can file for an injunction but that is a tedious and expensive endeavor on her part that is not likely to win particularly if you have the right to make medical decisions in the interim.
Answer Applies to: Texas
Replied: 9/6/2011
Law Office of Karen A. Clark, L.L.C.
Law Office of Karen A. Clark, L.L.C. | Karen A. Clark
The preliminary questions are does your daughter follow her mother's religious beliefs and does your custody agreement address the issue of which parent has the authority to make medical decisions. It would be a wise decision to discuss this issue with an attorney. If your daughter is in need of a transfusion on an emergency basis, the attorney can expedite this matter.
Answer Applies to: Washington
Replied: 9/5/2011
Law Office of Patricia Van Haren
Law Office of Patricia Van Haren | Patricia Van Haren
If you have joint legal custody, she can refuse to consent. However, you may petition the court for sole custody based on her refusal to allow the necessary medical procedure. If the doctor deems it a necessity you can obtain emergency medical care without the consent of your wife.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 9/2/2011
    The Law Offices of Robert W. Bellamy
    The Law Offices of Robert W. Bellamy | Robert W. Bellamy
    Depends on custody agreement and/or divorce decree. You need a lawyer.
    Answer Applies to: Alabama
    Replied: 9/2/2011
    Beresford Booth PLLC
    Beresford Booth PLLC | S. Scott Burkhalter
    Medical decisions should be covered under the parenting plan. File a motion and have the court order it if necessary.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 9/2/2011
    Fox Law Firm LLC
    Fox Law Firm LLC | Tina Fox
    It depends on whether or not you have joint custody. When you divorced you were given a final divorce decree and possibly a joint parenting agreement - if you were given the latter she has joint custody with you.
    Answer Applies to: Illinois
    Replied: 9/2/2011
    Glenn E. Tanner
    Glenn E. Tanner | Glenn E. Tanner
    What does your parenting plan say regarding medical decisions? If she is blocking what is in the best interest of your child, a court will probably over rule her.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 6/11/2013
    Dunnings Law Firm
    Dunnings Law Firm | Steven Dunnings
    If you have an order giving you custody, you can do what you need to do unless your ex files a motion with the court to get an order prohibiting you from getting the transfusion.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 9/2/2011
    Holmes Law Offices
    Holmes Law Offices | Martin M. Holmes
    The quick answer is probably no. However, the rights and responsibilities are set forth in the judgment and custody order. Normally the custodial parent has the right and responsibility to make day to day decisions regarding the raising of a child. If joint legal custody has been ordered, the parents must cooperate in making the decision. That presumes that the parents are willing and capable of cooperating in the best interest of the child. If that is not the case then a motion to modify custody is in order to change it from a joint legal to sole legal custody. A motion to allow the blood transfusion to protect the health of the child is also appropriate.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 9/2/2011
    Law Office of Roianne H. Conner
    Law Office of Roianne H. Conner | Roianne Houlton Conner
    If you have custody then you have the final decision making regarding these issues.
    Answer Applies to: Alabama
    Replied: 9/2/2011
    Cody and Gonillo, LLP
    Cody and Gonillo, LLP | Christine Gonilla
    If you have joint legal custody you are supposed to consult and agree. If you do not agree you go to court.
    Answer Applies to: Connecticut
    Replied: 6/11/2013
    Law Office of Nora Rilo
    Law Office of Nora Rilo | Nora Rilo
    Does your daughter share her religious beliefs? You may have to go to court to get an order to allow this procedure. Do you have joint custody, because if you do she does have a right to be consulted about medical procedures and if she objects, then you may need a court order.
    Answer Applies to: Florida
    Replied: 9/2/2011
    Michael D. Fluke, P.A.
    Michael D. Fluke, P.A. | Michael D. Fluke
    If she has joint Parental Responsibility as is the case in most court judgments, she can withhold her authorization. If the medical provider will not go forward without consent from both parents, you may have to seek a court order. I suggest you consult an experienced Family Law attorney to discuss your case in greater detail and learn all of your rights and options. Good luck.
    Answer Applies to: Florida
    Replied: 9/2/2011
    Meriwether & Tharp LLC
    Meriwether & Tharp LLC | Patrick Meriwether
    In most Georgia custody arrangements, the parents share legal custody, but one parent is the final arbiter of disagreements. If your custody agreement/order sets you as the final arbiter of all disagreements, she would need to file a modification of legal custody to stop you.
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 9/2/2011
    Law Office Of Jody A. Miller
    Law Office Of Jody A. Miller | Jody A. Miller
    You need to refer to your custody order. If you have custody and final say on health care issues then the answer is she likely cannot stop the procedure.
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 9/2/2011
    Law & Mediation Office of Jeffrey L. Pollock, Esq.
    Law & Mediation Office of Jeffrey L. Pollock, Esq. | Jeffrey Lawrence Pollock
    What is the Legal (not Physical) Custody that has been ordered? If it is joint/shared, then she has the right to make some input in this type of important medical decision.
    Answer Applies to: Pennsylvania
    Replied: 9/2/2011
    Law Offices of Paul A. Eads, A.P.C.
    Law Offices of Paul A. Eads, A.P.C. | Paul A. Eads
    You may need a lawyer's help with this one.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 6/11/2013
    The Law Office of Erin Farley
    The Law Office of Erin Farley | Erin Farley
    There are two kinds of custody: legal and physical. It sounds like you have physical custody (where the child lives); but the right to make medical decisions hinges on which parent has "legal" custody of the child (the right to make decisions about the child's health, education and welfare). If there is an order from the court, check the order to determine who has legal custody. Sometimes the order will state that the parent who has physical custody at the time the treatment is needed can make the medical decision. Most often, parents share joint legal custody. If this is the case, my advice is to get an order from the court on this issue. If the matter is urgent, you can file a request of the court "ex parte", which means the judge considers the issue in chambers (as opposed to having a full hearing). You should get the doctor to write a declaration regarding the urgency of the matter, and his/her recommendations as to treatment, and submit that with your paperwork. This matter screams for an attorney to help you. If there is any way you can afford it, the reward (your daughter's health) is worth the price.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 9/2/2011
    Ashman Law Office
    Ashman Law Office | Glen Edward Ashman
    That depends on what your parenting plan and divorce papers say as to who has final decision-making authority on health care. Since you have the paperwork (and the answer) and we have not read it, you already know the answer and we'd be guessing. The answer is in those papers.
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 9/2/2011
    Law Offices of Arlene D. Kock
    Law Offices of Arlene D. Kock | Arlene D. Kock
    If you have the legal right to make medical decisions on your daughters behalf and a doctor claims this treatment is necessary then you are justified in seeking this treatment. Your ex would have to file a motion to request a stop to this treatment.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 9/2/2011
    Wallin & Klarich: A Law Corporation
    Wallin & Klarich: A Law Corporation | Paul Wallin
    It depends if you have joint legal custody. If you do, then the parents must jointly agree and if you cannot agree you need to retain a lawyer immediately to go to court and to obtain a court order to have the medical procedure done. If you have sole legal custody then you can make the decision to have the transfusion on your own without the mothers permission.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 9/1/2011
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