3 reasons a parent may need to file an emergency petition

Resolving custody matters is often a lengthy process. Those going through a breakup or divorce may wait months for a hearing in front of a family law judge. Even those with existing custody orders may need to wait quite some time for a modification hearing to review proposed changes to the custody arrangement.

Not all families have the luxury of waiting numerous months to resolve custody issues. There are some scenarios in which a parent believes that taking action immediately is of the utmost importance. An emergency petition asking a judge to intervene immediately is possible in certain scenarios.

When might the courts consider a parent’s emergency petition?

When one parent faces violent criminal charges

Perhaps the police just arrested a co-parent for mistreating the children or assaulting the other parent. Maybe they got arrested after a fight in a bar. The Pennsylvania family courts may review an emergency petition in scenarios where there are pending criminal charges of a concerning nature against one of the parents.

When the children endure abuse at one house

Those subject to a custody order usually need to uphold the set terms until they can seek a modification. Sending the children away with someone physically abusing them is not in their best interests. Whether the parent abuses them or someone else in the household does, the courts may allow the other parent to file an emergency petition for the safety of the children. That can lead to rapid adjustments to the current custody order for the protection of the children.

When one parent wants to move without permission

Adults who share custody typically need to remain near one another to allow regular access. If one parent has reason to believe that the other may soon relocate, especially to another state, that could warrant an emergency petition. The courts can adjust the custody arrangements so one adult cannot flee the area with the children in violation of a custody order.

Learning more about emergency petitions and other custody proceedings may benefit those concerned about the safety of their children. Parents may need to act rapidly in scenarios where they believe their children are not currently safe.