Emergency custody is granted in extreme circumstances because a child may be in danger. Don’t make the mistake of not pursuing emergency custody because of any perceived challenges you imagine it takes to get an order that is difficult to obtain. Allow your attorney to represent you and build your case.
The fact that you are even considering emergency custody warrants the time it takes to learn more about it. If you suspect your child is in danger based on your current custody agreement, there are legal options at your disposal.
Is It Similar To Temporary Custody?
It is easy to confuse an order for emergency custody with a temporary order because both are temporary. If you are in the middle of a divorce, an emergency custody order will not be the final ruling concerning who receives custody. Only when your family law case is concluded will you have a more definitive answer.
Emergency orders differ from temporary orders in two critical ways:
- They are done Ex Parte
- They are effective immediately
If you and your attorney feel that your child is in danger, you can file a motion for emergency custody. When your attorney presents your case in front of the court, the other parent will not be present. This is the meaning of ex parte. The child’s other parent may not even receive notice of the hearing taking place.
Circumstances That Warrant Emergency Custody
Emergency custody is warranted when the child is being harmed either physically or mentally abused. Furthermore, it also applies when one parent subjects the child to illegal or inappropriate behavior such as drug or alcohol abuse.
Even if the child’s other parent does not drink or use drugs, if they refuse to let you see your son or daughter, you may be able to seek emergency custody. Why? A child being withheld from a parent can be viewed as harmful.
When there are concerns or signs of physical, sexual, or emotional abuse, you can pursue emergency custody for the health and welfare of your child.
In Washington State, you cannot seek an order for emergency custody unless your family law case has been initiated. Your attorney also can submit a motion in conjunction with filing for a divorce. This prevents the child from being cast into a dangerous scenario necessarily.
At ZafiroLaw, we understand the concerns you may have for your child’s safety. You need to gather evidence, complete the proper forms, and file them with a clerk to get an emergency order. We will stand beside you during your hearing and present the argument to the judge on your behalf.
Family law cases are emotionally challenging, and they can be even more demanding when children are involved. Contact ZafiroLaw to schedule a consultation with a professional and experienced family law attorney.