Gary Watson's View on Smart Phones & Relationships

In my Family Law practice, I frequently hear about communication and family issues arising as a result of too much cell phone usage. While we’re all guilty of at least occasionally picking up our phones during dinner or scrolling absentmindedly through emails during a conversation, if left unchecked, too much cell phone usage during family time can have serious consequences.

Read more: Gary Watson's View on Smart Phones & Relationships

My ex-husband is supposed to pick up our child from my house at 6 p.m. on Friday to begin his weekend parenting time, but he is consistently 45 minutes to one hour late? What can I do about this?

You need to file a parenting time violation with the Friend of the Court (FOC) in your county.  In Kent County, there is no cost to file.  If the FOC determines there is enough evidence to investigate, they will do so and will make a recommendation to the court.  The FOC can recommend anything from loss of parenting time for the violating parent, to a temporary suspension of parenting time, to a permanent change to the parenting time schedule.

I have physical custody of my minor children, but my ex and I share legal custody. Can I move with my children from Grand Rapids to Petoskey?

Only with permission from your ex or, if your ex does not agree, with permission from the court. Michigan law presumes that your children have a legal residence with both parents. Because you share legal custody of your children with your ex, you can only move more than 100 miles from that residence if your ex agrees, or if not, with a court order granted after a hearing.

On the other hand, if you had sole legal custody of your children, you could move more than 100 miles without permission from your ex and without court order.

Mike Toburen - Attorney at Law   

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Attorney Mike Toburen

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