Civil Contempt Issue with Custodial Parent

I’ve been in a bitter custody battle with my son’s father for years now and it’s not getting any better between us. My son’s father has Primary Physical custody of our child. We both have Joint Legal Custody of our son. I have Supervised Visitations both at a Time Together and also at my son’s father mother’s house. This is because the judge deemed me as a “Flight Risk.” Also, I can call and talk to my son anytime that I want whether he is with his father or grandmother. I am seeking your advice to see whether or not the Plaintiff is in Contempt. I believe that he is due to the following reasons:

  1. I am unable to gain access to all of my son’s medical records. Due to the fact that the Plaintiff won’t give me the following information:

• Child’s Dentist name, address, and telephone #.
• Child’s Primary Doctor’s office name, address, and telephone #. (IF DIFFERENT)
• Childs Dermatologist’s name, address, and telephone #. (IF HE HAS ONE TO TREAT HIS EXCEMA)
• All of the Hospital’s and Medical Facilities that has treated and seen the child for any kind of ailment or emergency in Greenville/Ayden, Raleigh, and any other city that he might of been in at the time of his medical emergency: I need all of their names, addresses, and telephone #'s.
• Name of all of the medications that he is taking and what they are for.
• Any other medical information that you want to share.

I have asked the Plaintiff many times for my son’s medical information through email and I feel as though that I am begging the Plaintiff to get it from him. I had told him the reason why I need all of the names, addresses, and telephone #'s for everyone that is on the list up above. And that is so I can go ahead and request copies of all of my son’s medical records from them. I won’t be able to do this unless the Plaintiff gives me the information that I have requested from him.

  1. Plaintiff won’t give me a copy of my son’s progress report. He tells me to contact my son’s teacher to get a copy of his progress report. But when I contacted my son’s teacher, she said that she can’t give me any information about my son.

  2. I am unable to schedule a parent teacher’s conference with my son’s teacher even though Plaintiff or my son isn’t going to be there.

  3. Even though I am only contacting Plaintiff regarding matters concerning our son……He still doesn’t communicate with me regarding anything (School, Medically, ETC) that has to do with him. He doesn’t answer my text messages, emails, or phone calls 99% of the time. When the plaintiff acts this way, this gets me really upset and I see myself calling him back to back and texting him back to back quite a number of times in the same day in order to get an answer from him. Because he should be willing to give me such information since I am the other parent to our child. I know that this is the wrong way to handle a situation where the custodial parent isn’t willing to communicate with me. But if I call the Plaintiff both at home and on his cell phone once a day and leave a message……I still won’t get a call back from him. So what should I do?? Because I am constantly left in the dark regarding matters concerning my son whether it is major or minor. An example would be if my son had to go to the Emergency Room or hospital, Plaintiff wouldn’t contact me by any means, whether it is through email, text message, or a phone call, to tell me about the incident. Even though I have supervised visitations and can’t be there at the hospital with my son….I feel that I have a right to know what is going on with him whether it‘s major or minor. The court order states that we both have Joint Legal Custody of our son. But I am still not being able exercise my rights concerning Joint Legal Custody and to be included in the decision making due to the Plaintiff’s behavior.

This is a real life example that took place in April 2012. The Plaintiff had taken my son to the Urgent Care/Emergency room on Saturday, April 7, 2012. The Plaintiff didn’t tell me about it. I’ve learned about this incident from the Plaintiff’s mother when I had gone to visit my son at her house. If she hadn’t told me about it, I wouldn’t have known. This is the kind of mess that I have to deal with.

Sometimes when my son calls me before he goes to bed, I would ask him to pass the telephone to his father so I can asked his father a question pertaining to him or I would try to get information that I had requested from him. The Plaintiff does either the following: (1) Tells my son that he doesn’t want to talk to me and to not hand him the phone or (2) If I keep on telling my son to hand his father the phone, the Plaintiff will hang up on me or (3) Plaintiff will get on the phone starts yelling at me and won’t let me get a word in. Tells me that he doesn’t want to talk to me and not trying to hear what I have to say. And that this conversation is over with. And I should focus on talking to my child instead of him. When he does the 2nd action, I would call back to speak to my son. Sometimes I would be able to speak to my son again and sometimes I can’t because he won’t answer the phone.

  1. When we are both in the presence of our child over the Plaintiff’s mother house, the Plaintiff talks down to me in a negative way. Like he has sole legal custody of our son (Which he doesn’t) and I don’t have any say so regarding anything with our son. Sometimes we get into arguments in front of our son and sometimes we don’t say anything to each other.

I am trying to Co-parent with the Plaintiff. But he isn’t willing to do so or adleast try. I want him to start communicating with me about matters regarding our son. I’ve been dealing with this for years now and I really want it to stop.

I am not a lawyer. Without seeing the documents I can not tell for sure if he is in contempt.

When my ex-wife wouldn’t furnish me with the records the school furnished them quickly. However, if they balked I was quite ready with, “Well, I’m going to have to talk to an attorney. Actually, it would be easier if I just fax you a copy of the custody agreement. Anyhow, could you please tell me who I should have the attorney serve with a sub poena? And could you please spell your name so I can add you to the witness list?”

Short of that it looks like you are running up a few more thousand dollars in legal bills.

If your order says joint legal custody then just take that to the doctor, school, etc. and they will give you the information you want directly.

I would take the court order to all of the places that are on my list if I knew the hospital/doctor name, address, and telephone #? This is my issue here…my son’s father won’t give me that information so I can go ahead and get my son’s medical records from them. Any other ideas?

You could start by going to the hospitals. There usually aren’t many of those. And those documents would have the names of other doctors on them.

Good luck.

You are not quite understanding what I am say. Also what documents are you referring too? Because I don’t have anything right now.

As I stated before, I don’t even know the names of my son’s doctor, dentist, or any other hospital that seen or treated my child. So how could I possibly request my son’s medical records from them?

Also, it will take a great deal of driving, gas, and time to go to each and every hospital and doctor’s office in the Raleigh and Greenville area in NC to see whether or not that they have seen my son at all!! That doesn’t make any sense.

I’m thinking smaller town.

I’d call Baptist Hospital and ask about my son. If they gave me some medical document then I would look on it for the referring physician. If they had never heard about my son I’d move on.
I’d call Forsyth Hospital and do the same.

In Raleigh there are more hospitals. And Greenville too. However, a morning of your time with the phone book is going to be much cheaper than an hour with an attorney.

Does he file claims with an insurance company. My ex is cooperative so I don’t have to worry. I generally end up sending her copies of the insurance explanation of benefits. However, I have seen details on those of which I wasn’t aware.

I’m just trying to throw ideas out there. Going to the courts can be time consuming, expensive, and not always effective.