Can You Go to Jail for Violating a Custody Order in Utah?

There may come a time when two parents decide to seek a court order to manage custody of their child. However, an effective child custody order must be followed by each parent. When one parent violates a custody order, this could lead to a number of serious issues. If you violated a custody order and you are concerned about being sent to jail, you should consult with an experienced Salt Lake City custody order attorney as soon as possible. Overson & Bugden understands the criminal penalties that may come from violating a custody order, and we are here to offer you the criminal defense you deserve. Our firm is here to discuss whether a parent can go to jail for violating a custody order in Utah.

Criminal Penalties for Violating a Custody Order in Utah

When two parents decide it would be best to end their relationship and co-parent their child or multiple children, the parents may decide to draft a child custody agreement. However, it can be challenging for two parents to agree on an arrangement that meets the demands and needs of the child and each parent. As a result, if the parents cannot agree to a custody arrangement, the Utah family court will have to be involved in the process to determine a custody order that works for both parties.

A family court judge will look at a variety of factors to determine a custody order. For example, the court may look at the living situation of each parent to assess whether they are equipped to raise a child. Once a judge makes a judgment on a custody matter, it is expected that each parent will adhere to the court’s custody order. However, this is not always the case.

Whether it was negligently or intentionally, when a parent fails to adhere to the custody agreement, they will be held liable for their breach of the custody order by the court. As a custody order is created by a court of law, a parent who violates a custody order can find themselves in a heap of legal trouble. This legal trouble includes the possibility of being arrested and sent to jail for violating a custody order.

Contempt of Court for Violating Custody Order

When a parent violates a custody order, a judge can hold the parent in contempt of court. Specifically, one parent can move for an order to show cause. This motion will require the parent who violated the order to appear before the court to explain the reason behind their violation and why they should not be held in contempt. If a parent is unsuccessful at this hearing, they could be sent to jail for their custody order violation.

Additionally, if a parent does not come to court after a motion by the other parent, this may cause the court to issue a bench warrant for the parent’s arrest. While this may not mean that law enforcement will actively look to arrest the parent, it could mean that you could be arrested in a simple traffic stop.

If you know or believe that a court has issued a bench warrant for your arrest due to the violation of a child custody order, you should speak with an experienced Riverton City criminal defense attorney as soon as possible. Our firm has handled a number of child custody order violation cases, and we can help you manage your case. Under some circumstances, we may be able to arrange an agreement with the court that allows you to avoid jail time for a violation of a court order.

If you wish to know more about custody orders in Utah, you should speak with an experienced Utah family law attorney immediately.

Adjusting Child Custody Orders in Utah

If you violated a child custody order in Utah because you believe that the order was unfairly decided or the custody order does not work with your unique circumstances, you should not use this as a reason to violate the custody order. For example, if you disagree with the amount of child support you pay to your child’s parent, you can be held legally liable for failure to pay child support.

Fortunately, if you do not agree with your custody order, you may be able to seek a revision to the custody order. Our firm can help you fight for a revision of your custody order. For example, if you are unhappy with the amount of time you are provided for visitation with your child, you may be able to argue for more time or even partial custody of your child.

Whether you are in legal trouble for violating a custody order or you wish to revise your custody order, our firm is here for you.

Speak with Our Experienced Utah Child Custody Attorneys to Discuss Your Violation

If you violated a custody order and worried you might be arrested, you should contact an experienced Salt Lake City family lawyer as soon as possible. Skilled family lawyer Darwin Overson has years of legal experience, and we are committed to providing you with the legal representation that you deserve. You do not have to handle your child custody case alone. We understand the stress of facing jail time and possibly being away from your child, and we are here for you in your time of need. Contact Overson & Bugden at (801) 758-2287, to schedule your free legal consultation to discuss your custody order violation. You may also contact the firm online to schedule your free consultation.