COVID-19: Philadelphia stay at home order and child custody

In Philadelphia, the custody arrangements agreed upon between both parties are to be followed still. Although the order states individuals should stay home, it has exclusions for tasks deemed essential.
Child running to dad at pick-up

Philadelphia, along with much of the United States, is currently under a stay at home order due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Under these orders, it can be a bit confusing to understand what is and is not allowed. This order is adding an extra level of stress and confusion to divorced and separated parents who share custody. It is leading many to ask, what should we do during this time?

In Philadelphia, the custody arrangements agreed upon between both parties are to be followed still. Although the order states individuals should stay home, it has exclusions for tasks deemed essential. Visiting and caring for your family is deemed essential under the stay at home order. It may be a bit more difficult or scary to do this regular task, but if both parents agree and are on the same page, it is permitted. 

If both parents agree that they are not comfortable with taking their child back and forth at this time and can agree upon make-up time in the future, that is also permitted. In the case where one parent is not abiding by the custody arrangements, this is where issues come in. Currently, the court systems are closed. However, once the courts are re-opened, any uncooperative spouse can be brought to court. At this point, there could be an opportunity for significant make-up custody time. 

This is confusing and unfamiliar territory for everyone right now. If there is any confusion of what is and is not permitted at this time, it is best to discuss options with an attorney. The attorneys at Sadek and Cooper Law Offices have handled thousands of divorce cases in Philadelphia and the surrounding counties of Montgomery, Delaware, Bucks, and Chester. We are also licensed in the State of New Jersey. Contact us today to schedule your free consultation at 215-545-0008. 

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