Divorcing parents often keep their children as the focal point during proceedings, carefully considering how various decisions will affect their best interests. However, some parents in Louisiana might be misguided in their approach to dealing with child custody both before and after divorce. Here are some behaviors that parents should avoid.

It is understandable for parents who do not have physical custody to feel as if they do not see their child enough after divorce. In an effort to make their point, some parents choose to withhold child support payments. Rather than forcing an ex to agree to increased visitation times, parents who stop paying child support generally end up facing serious legal repercussions. On top of this, family law judges may be hesitant to award more parenting time to a parent who failed to pay child support despite having the means to do so.

Legal custody — the legal right to make decisions on behalf of a child — can also present problems. When parents share joint legal custody, they can easily butt heads over things like where to go to school or which medical treatments are necessary. Some individuals might feel that it would be easier to make decisions on their own and leave their ex out of it altogether, but keeping them in the dark could be a violation of a custody order.

Interfering with child custody is a serious problem that some Louisiana parents might not even realize they are doing. As such, it is usually best to petition the court for a modification of a custody order rather than deviating from an order that is already in place. While this might feel like a time-consuming process, it can prevent parents from finding themselves in unexpected legal troubles.