What can make parental alienation a legal concern?

On Behalf of | Jul 9, 2024 | Child Custody

It is typical for parents to have disputes over child custody matters, especially if they have contradicting opinions on how to raise their children. There are legal options to address high-conflict divorces and child custody scenarios. Still, these situations can go too far, placing the child and the entire family at risk, which may happen with parental alienation.

It occurs when parents commit a series of unethical and harmful behavior that alters their child’s mental wellness, beliefs and even memories. Sometimes, a party can convince their child that the other parent physically abused them, which can have legal implications and require careful investigation.

When it becomes a legal issue

Each state can have varying standards when it comes to addressing parental alienation, but specific factors can force the court to intervene, including the following:

  • It has become so severe that it qualifies as child abuse.
  • The alienation led to severe manipulation and family violence.
  • The damage it caused requires the court to adjust the child custody arrangement and enforce orders to protect the child and each parent’s rights effectively.

When this type of misconduct occurs, the court usually processes it through civil legal proceedings. However, the judge may have the liberty to evaluate a case and take necessary measures on an as-needed basis, considering how some parents may commit alienation unintentionally because of their pre-existing emotional or mental health issues.

Preserving the family by addressing its needs

Courts typically prioritize the child’s best interests when making custody decisions, but other factors can contribute to these setups, such as the family’s situation and each party’s parental rights. When feeling confused about what options can address the entire family’s needs, consider seeking legal counsel. Experienced insight can help parties dispel misunderstandings and keep their child’s welfare in mind.