Weaver v. Sena
A court can find that a custodial parent interfered with a noncustodial parent's visitation and order reunification therapy and increased visitation. In 2007, the plaintiff mother, who is not married, gave birth to a minor child. The parents agreed to joint custody, with primary residence with the mother. In 2011, the father, who had been visiting the minor child on alternate Saturdays at the mother's residence, requested that the court modify visitation. A guardian ad litem opined that the mother exposed the minor child to negative information about the father, interfered with the father's ability to parent and alienated the minor child from the father. In the past, the minor child suffered from seizures. Currently, the seizures do not appear to be acute. The court found that the mother attempted to undermine the father's attempts to have a relationship with the minor child, rescheduled doctor's visits that she knew the father planned to attend and kept the child away from daycare, when she knew the father intended to visit the daycare. Allegedly, the mother also prevented the doctor and the daycare from disclosing information to the father, and then complained that the father was uninformed. The court ordered the father to write letters to the child, care of the child's therapist, so that, if appropriate, the therapist can present the father's letters to the child. The court also ordered the father to attend parenting classes. The court awarded the father visitation in September, supervised by one of the paternal grandparents. Starting in October, the court awarded unsupervised visitation every Saturday. If unable to attend visitation, the father shall provide 24 hours' advance notice, except in the event of a bona fide emergency. Starting in November, the court also awarded weekly phone contact between the father and the minor child. The court ordered the mother to refrain from listening to or taping the father-child phone conversations. The court ordered the mother to provide advance notice of the minor's medical appointments and to refrain from criticizing the father. The court ordered the parties to pay the guardian ad litem's bill of $7,550.