Judge Custody Orders from California honored here?

I moved here from California in July. My divorce was final in February 2015. The judge in California granted me full physical and legal custody of our 12 year old daughter, and gave me permission to move to North Carolina (documented in our agreement). The judge gave my daughter’s father visitation - 1 week over Winter Break, and 3 weeks in the summer. He has not been part of her life for the past 2 years (he suffers from Bi-Polar, and had been in and out of hospitals getting treated) - he now lives in Texas. I just found out that he is planning to come to North Carolina next week for his Winter Break week visit, and expects her to stay with him for the week. My daughter is very distraught about seeing him, and is threatening to run away if she is made to spend time with him because he is a stranger to her. She suffers from anxiety, and is currently seeing a therapist. My therapist suggested I contact you to find out if I would be in contempt of court if I did not allow her father to see my daughter since the orders came from a California Judge not a North Carolina Judge. The therapist feels it would be detrimental to my daughter’s mental health if she is forced to be with him.

What are my options? Will I get in trouble if I break the judges orders from California? What are my options to prevent visitation in the future or at minimum to make sure they are supervised visits?


If you fail to comply with the court order on custody, then you can be held in contempt (although he’d have to file his motion in California). I would proactively seek a modification of your previous custody order. You’ll have to have the order registered in NC and then ask an NC judge to assume jurisdiction, but since no one lives in CA, and the child lives here now it would be proper to seek a change in jurisdiction.