Child’s refusal to visit other parent no excuse to violate custody order; Parent held in Contempt

Recent Missouri Case: Parent responsible for violating the court order when child refuses to visit the other parent as required in the court ordered parenting plan

Appellant D.R.P. ("Mother") appeals the judgment of the Circuit Court of Jackson County holding her in civil contempt of the court's judgment regarding the parenting plan for M.P.P. ("Father") with their minor child C.P. ("Daughter"). In her sole point on appeal, Mother argues the trial court erred in finding that she willfully, intentionally, and contumaciously disobeyed the court's judgment and parenting plan because there was not substantial evidence to support such a finding.

The trial court did not err in holding Mother in contempt of court because there is substantial evidence to support the trial court's finding that Father made a case for civil contempt and Mother failed to establish that her failure to enforce the parenting plan was not due to her own intentional and contumacious conduct. The Judgment ordered parents to execute parenting plan including parenting time. The record shows that, at respondent’s scheduled parenting time, appellant picked up child after school and sat silent with child in car when child refused to accompany respondent on multiple occasions. Such conduct “undermined” the parenting plan.


Missouri Court of Appeals, Western District - WD78541