Can I motion for a custody change if my wife leaves Wisconsin? | Sterling Law Offices, S.C. Can I motion for a custody change if my wife leaves Wisconsin? | Sterling Law Offices, S.C. global $post;
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– from Albert B. in Ottawa, WI

Question Details:

My ex-wife was granted temporary custody until the hearing for a final judgment. She was ordered by the court to remain here in Wisconsin with our two children until that date. I recently learned that she removed them from school and moved out of state. Can she do that? What about my visitation rights and the court's orders? Can I make a motion for a change of temporary custody until the hearing?

Family Law Attorney Response:

It sounds as though she defied the courts orders directly. My question is, do you have legal counsel? If you do not, my advice would be to obtain representation immediately because these matters are better left in the hands of a family law attorney. To answer your question as best as I can, you can make a motion for her to show cause as to why she ignored the order and denied you visitation.

Click here to learn more about child visitation.

Depending on the details of the situation, one scenario depicting a possible outcome is seen in Pamperin v. Pamperin, 112 Wis. 2d 70, 331 N.W.2d 648 (Ct. App. 1983). In this situation, the wife took the daughter and moved to Mississippi with her boyfriend against a court order. The husband made a motion to show cause, however, the wife did not appear. Several times. The husband eventually received custody. The scenario does not take into consideration that your wife may or may not appear, but that the court agreed that the wife should appear to show cause.

Courts do not take defiance of their orders lightly, and you shouldn't take being denied your visitation rights lightly, either.

Lawyer Jeff Hughes from Sterling Law Offices, S.C. Jeff Hughes, J.D.
Managing Partner
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