Legally can I make my teenage daughter come with me on my visiting days?

UPDATED: Jun 16, 2011

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Legally can I make my teenage daughter come with me on my visiting days?

I’m recently divorced and I have 3 kids. When its my weekend to have my kids my 14 year-old daughter makes other plans. By law can I make her come with me on those days?

Asked on June 16, 2011 under Family Law, Louisiana


M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

Teenagers, unlike younger children, present a whole a more difficult situation. In these cases, courts generally let minors age 12 or older decide whether or not they want to visit their parent.  The fact is that you cannot physically force a 14-year-old girl to visit if she doesn’t want to. The reality is that threatening your teen with punishment or restricting their freedom is not likely to get what you want, at least in the long run. The reality is that most teenagers would rather be with their friends than with either of their parents. 

Note:  If the custodial parent is encouraging this behavior, that [arent can be charged with contempt of court for attempting to interfere with ordered visitation.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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