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Consequences of disobeying parenting plans

On Behalf of | Sep 12, 2023 | Divorce

Parenting after a divorce can be challenging, but it is important to prioritize your child’s well-being. One way to ensure a smooth co-parenting experience is by adhering to the agreed-upon parenting plan.

However, some individuals may choose to disobey these plans, which can lead to various negative consequences.

Emotional impact on children

Children thrive on stability and predictability, and disruptions to their routine can lead to anxiety, confusion and even feelings of guilt. As a result, consistently disobeying a parenting plan can create much emotional turmoil for the child in the aftermath of divorce.

Conflict between co-parents

Increased conflict between co-parents is likely when they fail to follow the parenting plan. This can result in ongoing disputes, arguments and a hostile environment for the child. You can typically mitigate conflict by maintaining open lines of communication and addressing any concerns through respectful dialogue.

Legal consequences

Courts take parenting plans seriously and disobeying them can have many legal consequences. A parent who consistently disregards the established plan may face penalties, including fines, loss of custody rights or even jail time in extreme cases.

Long-term impact

Neglected parenting plans can have a lasting impact on a child’s development. Consider that studies show that children exposed to high-conflict divorce situations are more likely to struggle with emotional and behavioral issues in the future.

According to, 25.8% of children lived in a one-parent household in 2019. For these children, parenting plans provided stability and reassurance during a trying time. In the event your child’s needs or circumstances change, you should revisit the court to make the necessary updates.