COVID-19 & Family Law in Kansas City, Update 3Kayte Rhodes
UPDATE CONCERNING FAMILY COURT CASES
The 10th Judicial District’s family judges are committed to ensuring court orders are followed and the best interest of every child is foremost in all our decisions. We are receiving a surge in calls as many families seek to understand what the Johnson County Stay-Home Order and District Court Administrative Order mean for their case.
As we work to execute Administrative Order 20-06, effective March 23, 2020, the following guidance is provided:
Existing Parenting Plans
The Emergency Order of Local Health Officer specifically defines an essential activity as any action necessary to comply with valid court orders. Parenting plans, including exchanges of minor children between parents, remain valid court orders, previously found to be in the minor children’s best interests. Joint legal custody parents may make other agreements they deem to be in the children’s best interests. Court-ordered exchanges shall occur as stated in the parenting plan unless the parents agree otherwise in writing. Family courts remain open. Contact your division if you need further guidance.
Specialized Court Services:
Johnson County Domestic Court Services is closed for in-person services, including the Supervised Parenting Time Program and the Supervised Exchange Program. Staff members are available by phone and email to provide further guidance regarding their services.
Supervised parenting time through third-party providers shall continue if it can be done remotely or virtually. Parents shall be cooperative and flexible with each other and their service provider as protocols are modified.
Supervised exchanges through third-party providers shall continue and shall be done in compliance with the Department of Health Guidelines. Parents shall be cooperative and flexible with each other and their service providers as protocols are modified.