Portrait of John K Grubb

Texas Divorce and Prenuptial Agreement

5005 Riverway Drive, Suite 450 • Houston, Texas 77056

Phone: 713-877-8800 • Fax: 713-877-1229

Temporary, Emergency Custody Orders Protect Kids

Parents who fear that a child’s non-custodial parent may take the child out of state or may pose harm to the child can take action to prevent this. For couples undergoing a divorce, a temporary custody order can be an effective legal tool. Courts will grant temporary custody orders pending a divorce based on the evidence that a parent can provide. Proof that the other parent appears to be preparing to move (for example, quitting a job and selling a house) may be able to persuade a judge to issue a legal order granting custody to the requesting parent until the divorce case becomes final. If the other parent violates that order, he or she could then face criminal charges.

A temporary or emergency child custody order may also be appropriate when there is already a child custody order is in place if the child faces a new threat. Say that the child custody order grants custody to parent A. Ordinarily parent B could not do anything that violates the terms of that order, but perhaps parent A has been arrested or has begun abusing alcohol or drugs. Parent B should seek an emergency child custody order before taking the child, as the without the order, parent B would technically be engaged in parental kidnapping. Courts are able to respond quickly to these types of dangers. A set of uniform laws and a federal law ensure that, no matter what state you find yourself in, a court will be able protect your child.

Have you received a temporary or emergency child custody order? How responsive was the court to your needs and your child’s safety?

John K. Grubb & Associates, P.C. – Houston divorce attorneys

1 Comment so far

  1. Timothy J. Conlon, Esq. on February 28th, 2012

    Unmarried parents may also receive temporary child custody orders in parentage court. A mistake many unmarried parents make is to avoid going to court and believe that having the father listed on a birth certificate would be sufficient to protect his rights. When the rights and obligations of the father are not legally established, it sets up a bad situation where one parent may be tempted to evade the other’s rights to the child by engaging in parental kidnapping.