1. My Michigan parenting time order states I have "reasonable visitation rights or reasonable parenting time". What does this mean?
This means the parents have the responsibility for setting up a mutually agreed upon schedule for parenting time, which is reasonable under the circumstances. If the parents cannot mutually agree to a visitation schedule, the following options are available:
- Contact the other party to see if they will agree to mediation.
- Contact the Washtenaw County Friend of the Court and request the Friend of the Court file a petition with the Court to change the order to require a specific schedule.
- File a petition or contact an attorney to help file the petition.
2. I have a specific parenting time schedule in Michigan that I need to change. What can I do?
If a Michigan temporary change in the parenting time schedule is necessary, contact the other parent to discuss making other arrangements. If a permanent change is necessary:
- See if both parents can agree to a change (stipulation and consent agreement).
- The Washtenaw County Friend of the Court can provide mediation services, if both parties agree to participate.
- File a petition with the Court for a change in the order or contact an attorney to help file the petition.
3. If the payor of child support in Michigan is not making regular child support payments, do I have to allow him/her to have parenting time?
Yes, parenting time and support in Michigan are separate orders of the Court, with separate enforcement procedures.
4. The other party is not following the parenting time order in my Washtenaw County case. What can I do?
File a written complaint with the Washtenaw County Friend of the Court office. If the Friend of the Court determines that either parent has violated the parenting time order, they have the responsibility to proceed with enforcement.
5. The other parent is not sending or returning clothing or other personal items for our child. Is there anything the Washtenaw County Friend of the Court can do?
The Washtenaw County Friend of the Court follows the written Order of the Court. Unless the Court order states each parent’s responsibility for clothing, the Friend of the Court does not have any enforcement power.
6. In Michigan, do I have to let my children go for parenting time if it appears that the other parent has been drinking or using drugs?
That is the custodial parent's decision. If the decision is made to deny parenting time in these circumstances, be prepared to explain to the Court at a contempt hearing why the decision was in the best interest of the child(ren).
7. I am concerned about the other parent discussing changes in the Court orders with the children. What can the Washtenaw County Friend of the Court do?
Unless the Court order forbids such discussions, the Friend of the Court has no enforcement power.
8. The Washtenaw County Friend of the Court has refused to enforce my Michigan visitation order. What can I do?
The law in Michigan requires the Friend of the Court to enforce parenting time orders. If the Friend of the Court refuses to comply with the law you have a right to file a grievance regarding their procedures.
9. I have a parenting time order in Michigan, and my teenage child does not want to come for parenting time. What can I do?
The parents of the child(ren) are bound by the Court orders. However, one or more of the following may be considered:
- See if a different parenting time arrangement with the child(ren) and the other parent can be worked out.
- File a petition with the Court requesting a change in the parenting time order.
- Request that the Washtenaw County Friend of the Court enforce the parenting time order.