Child Custody

questions & answers

Question: I am in Arizona, my daughters father lives in California. I am letting her go to California to be with her father for a couple weeks. What happens if he does not want to give her back?

Answer: You do not mention whether it was the Arizona Courts or the California courts that issued the custody order dividing child custody (now called legal decision-making and parenting time) between you and your ex.  If it is an Arizona order and he does not return the child after the visit, you would file a motion in family court asking that the custody order be enforced and the child returned to you.  Because this is a website to answer questions on Arizona law, we cannot give you specific information if the custody order came from California.  However, almost all states adhere to the Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement Act, and it is likely a California court would also return the child to you.  If you have specific procedural questions, you will need to talk to a lawyer.  There are three programs in Arizona that you can use to get inexpensive legal advice and guidance.  One is the modest means program.  You will need to apply for the program and meet the financial qualifications.  Once you are qualified, Modest Means will send you a list of attorneys whose practice covers your area of concern.  You select a lawyer from the list and will be entitled to a one hour consultation for $75.  If you need additional help and if the lawyer agrees to take your case, the most you will be charged is $75 per hours.  the telephone number is (866) 637-5341.  Both Maricopa County and Pima County have lawyer referral programs that offer a 30 minute consult with an attorney.  Maricopa County's Lawyer Referral Service offers a 30 minute consult with an experienced attorney for $40.  The telephone number is  (602) 257-4434.  Pima County's Lawyer Referral Service offers a 30 minute attorney consult for $35.  The telephone number is (520) 623-4625.

QUESTIONS

  • I am in Arizona, my daughters father lives in California. I am letting her go to California to be with her father for a couple weeks. What happens if he does not want to give her back?

STORIES

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OTHER LEGAL RESOURCES

  • State Bar of Arizona
    www.azbar.org
  • Maricopa County Bar
    www.maricopabar.org
    Referral number 602-257-4434
  • Pima County Bar
    www.pimacountybar.org
    Referral number 520-623-4625
  • National Domestic Violence Hotline
    800-799-7233
  • Bankruptcy Court Self Help Center
    866-553-0893
  • Certified Legal Document Preparer Program
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