Legal Question in Family Law in California


My daughter is receiving child support for her child from the father.

She moved in with us in June of last year because of financial difficuties. She used to live in the same city as the father and he was picking her up when ever he wanted to see her

She now lives 130miles (with us) from the father. She has been under a doctors care for depression for many years. She has not been able to drive on freeways or traffic for a long time because of the medication she is on and her mental condidition. Her doctor has given her a letter (for to whom it may concern) saying that her condition and the meds she is on make her ability to drive hazardous. The father wants her to drive half way or will go to court to change the court order. My daughter says that he is welcome to see his daughter any time if he picks her up and brings her back. My ganddauther is only eight years and too young to travel by herself.

Does the court make exceptions when one parent cannot drive? What is there to expect from the court in this situation or will they force her to drive? I drove a few times so he could see her, but I don't its up to me. I am up in age and driving that distance is not pactical for me. Thank you.

Asked on 4/01/09, 11:46 pm

2 Answers from Attorneys

Phillip Lemmons, Esq. Phillip Lemmons APC, Attorneys at Law

Re: visitation

If her mental condition is so bad that she cannot drive, then the father may have a good case for getting custody. She might want to settle up with dad and agree to do her share of the driving. If she really cannot drive a car, then she's probably incapable of taking care of the child. I'd say that dad has a pretty good case for custody is he want's it. So be very careful here.

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Answered on 4/02/09, 12:38 am

Lyle Johnson Bedi and Johnson Attorneys at Law

Re: visitation

The issue raised by Mr. Lemmons is a legitimate concern. However, the ability to drive a vehicle is much different than the ability to care for a child. Also she has a safety net, as the grandparents are available to take over if needed. She should get a letter from her doctor that her condition does not prevent her caring for a child. Consulting with a attorney about this would be advisable.

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Answered on 4/05/09, 8:58 pm

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