Sharing Child Custody: What Happens When You Don’t Agree on COVID Safety Measures?

Posted by Joseph Lento | Jun 14, 2022 | 0 Comments

Although we're hopefully over the worst of the COVID–19 pandemic, the virus hasn't gone away. As restrictions ease, everyone will have different opinions about how to live alongside COVID-19 safely, which raises a question: what happens if parents don't agree on COVID-19 safety measures?

While you should always contact an attorney if you're dealing with an urgent family law matter, here are some tips to help parents deal with child sharing if you don't agree on COVID-19 safety measures.

Know Your Legal Rights

Unless one parent has sole custody, which is rare, both parents have the right to:

  • Care for the child
  • Spend time with the child
  • Make legal decisions regarding the child's welfare

When parents share physical custody, they can decide how to parent when the child is in their care. This could mean one parent wishes to retain safety measures like social distancing and face coverings when the other parent does not.

Parents must uphold the terms of any custody agreement, which may mean reaching a compromise regarding Covid-19 measures. If you're concerned about your child's welfare, contact the LLF Law Firm for advice.

Discuss Your Concerns

One parent may have certain reasons why they want to retain – or discard – COVID-19 safety measures. For example, if one parent works in a health setting, they might be worried about an increased transmission risk, whereas another parent may feel returning to “normal” is in the child's best interests.

Wherever you stand on COVID-19 measures, you're more likely to reach a fair compromise if both parties feel heard and understood. As with many day-to-day parenting issues, you don't need to agree on everything, but you should ensure the child feels secure.

Modify the Custody Agreement

Although custody agreements are considered permanent, they can be modified to reflect a change of circumstances.

There are two ways to modify a custody agreement: by mutual consent or through a court order. You might, for example, agree to give one parent more access through, e.g., Zoom while retaining masks for face-to-face visits, and so on.

In PA, health decisions must be made jointly by both parents if they share custody. If you can't reach an agreement over, for example, the Covid-19 vaccine, and you're concerned for your child's safety, contact our Family Law Team for family law assistance.

Get Help With Your Child Sharing Concerns

When there's a child custody disagreement, it's important to prioritize what's in the child's best interests. Often, this means reaching a fair compromise with the other parent, but it could also mean turning to a family law attorney for advice.

If you're dealing with urgent family law matters, our Family Law Team can help. We can explain your legal rights and how you might move forward – call the LLF Law Firm now on 888.535.3686 or reach out online to discuss matters.

About the Author

Joseph Lento

"I pride myself on having heart and driving hard to get results!" Attorney Joseph D. Lento is a veteran of one of the nation's busiest family courts with nearly 20 years' experience passionately helping families. By day, he worked in the trenches of family court, and at night, he studied the law. He helped countless families while working at family court, and he went on to become an attorney, dedicating his law practice to continuing the work he started years earlier. Mr. Lento's experience both behind the scenes and on the front lines allows him to understand a client's family law matter from all angles, and allows him to find and employ the most effective strategies to get favorable outcomes for any client. Joseph D. Lento is licensed in Pennsylvania New Jersey, and New York, and is admitted pro hac vice as needed nationwide. In the courtroom and in life, attorney Joseph D. Lento stands up when the bell rings!


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The LLF Law Firm has unparalleled experience practicing Family Law in Pennsylvania. If you are having any uncertainties about what the future may hold for you and your family, contact our offices today. Our Family Law Team will go above and beyond the needs for any client and fight for what is fair.

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