Ex-Spouse doesn't return kid for custody

We have a custody agreement that states that I pick up my kid every second weekend at spouses residence. It states in a different section of the agreement that I get custody during half of Christmas break, but it doesn’t specify the location of pickup in that section. Now spouse is taking my kid to another state for a christmas visit with relatives and claims I have to pick up my kid from there instead of in our home city (we both reside in the same city in different houses).

It seems obvious that spouse is in the wrong here, but what do I do at this point?

If your custody schedule is set forth in a separation agreement, rather than a court order, your only recourse is to sue your spouse for breach of contract. I would suggest you read the following article: Breach And Enforcement of Separation Agreements

The document we signed is titled “Memorandum of Judgement” and it is also signed by a District Court Judge.
Does that mean it is a court order?

If so, is there a different process to follow for a breach?

If it is signed by a judge it is a court order, enforceable by the powers of contempt. If she has violated the order you can seek to have her held in contempt. To learn about contempt, read our article: The Contempt Process.

Thank you for the info. Is there a specific form I submit to the court to have her held in contempt? I didn’t see anything obvious when I looked.


There is no contempt form, so to speak. You will need to draft and file a motion for order to show cause. We have a service where you can get access to a library of legal forms and communicate with an attorney through our Rosen Online Service. This service only costs $199/month, and would be a great resource to help you file your contempt motion.