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P.O. Box 2884
Waterloo, IA 50704-2884
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House File 455 - Introduced
BY KAUFMANN, ABDUL=SAMAD,
SCHUELLER, and SANDS
Passed House, Date Passed Senate, Date
Vote: Ayes Nays Vote: Ayes Nays
A BILL FOR
1 An Act relating to child custody and visitation.
2 BE IT ENACTED BY THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF THE STATE OF IOWA:
3 TLSB 1673YH 83
1 1 Section 1. NEW SECTION. 256.47 EXTRACURRICULAR
1 2 ACTIVITIES == CUSTODIAL INTERFERENCE.
1 3 A school=related extracurricular activity shall not be
1 4 required for a student if it interferes with the custody
1 5 arrangement of a student when the extracurricular activity is
1 6 scheduled outside of regular school hours. If a scheduled
1 7 school=related extracurricular activity interferes with a
1 8 noncustodial parent's custody arrangement, the parent shall
1 9 notify an appropriate school official and the student shall be
1 10 excused without penalty from attending the specific activity.
1 11 This section does not apply to special events such as
1 12 performances, games, and competitions. For the purposes of
1 13 this section, "school=related extracurricular activity" means
1 14 an activity that takes place outside of regular school hours
1 15 whether or not it is related to the student's academic
1 16 curriculum. The state board shall adopt rules relating to the
1 17 implementation of this section.
1 18 Sec. 2. Section 598.21D, Code 2009, is amended to read as
1 19 follows:
1 20 598.21D RELOCATION OF PARENT AS GROUNDS TO MODIFY ORDER OF
1 21 CHILD CUSTODY == LEVEL OF CARE CONSIDERATION IN MODIFYING.
1 22 1. If a parent awarded joint legal custody and physical
1 23 care or sole legal custody is relocating the residence of the
1 24 minor child to a location which is one hundred fifty miles or
1 25 more from the residence of the minor child at the time that
1 26 custody was awarded, the court may consider the relocation a
1 27 substantial change in circumstances.
1 28 2. If the court determines that the relocation is a
1 29 substantial change in circumstances, in determining the best
1 30 interest of the child, the court may modify an existing order
1 31 that awarded joint legal custody and physical care to the
1 32 relocating parent and instead award joint legal custody and
1 33 physical care to the nonrelocating parent, if the court finds
1 34 that, in regard to the level of care provided by each parent,
1 35 the care provided by the nonrelocating parent is equal to the
2 1 level of care provided by the relocating parent. If the court
2 2 modifies the order and awards joint legal custody and physical
2 3 care to the nonrelocating parent, the court shall modify the
2 4 custody order to, at a minimum, preserve, as nearly as
2 5 possible, the existing relationship between the minor child
2 6 and the relocating parent. If modified, the order may include
2 7 a provision for extended visitation during summer vacations
2 8 and school breaks and scheduled telephone contact between the
2 9 relocating parent and the minor child. The modification may
2 10 include a provision assigning the responsibility for
2 11 transportation of the minor child for visitation purposes to
2 12 either or both parents.
2 13 3. If the court determines that the relocation is a
2 14 substantial change in circumstances, and the court modifies
2 15 the custody order retaining the provisions of the order
2 16 awarding joint legal custody and physical care or sole legal
2 17 custody to the relocating parent, the court shall modify the
2 18 custody order to, at a minimum, preserve, as nearly as
2 19 possible, the existing relationship between the minor child
2 20 and the nonrelocating parent. If modified, the order may
2 21 include a provision for extended visitation during summer
2 22 vacations and school breaks and scheduled telephone contact
2 23 between the nonrelocating parent and the minor child. The
2 24 modification may include a provision assigning the
2 25 responsibility for transportation of the minor child for
2 26 visitation purposes to either or both parents.
2 27 4. If the court makes a finding of past interference by
2 28 the a parent awarded joint legal custody and physical care or
2 29 sole legal custody with the minor child's access to the other
2 30 parent, the court may order the posting of a cash bond to
2 31 assure future compliance with the visitation provisions of the
2 32 decree. The supreme court shall prescribe guidelines for the
2 33 forfeiting of the bond and restoration of the bond following
2 34 forfeiting of the bond.
2 35 Sec. 3. Section 598.23, subsection 1, Code 2009, is
3 1 amended to read as follows:
3 2 1. If a person against whom a temporary order or final
3 3 decree has been entered willfully disobeys the order or
3 4 decree, the person may be cited and punished by the court for
3 5 contempt and be committed to the county jail for a period of
3 6 time not to exceed thirty days for each offense. The court
3 7 may find that a person willfully disobeyed the order or decree
3 8 and hold the person in contempt if the person is found to have
3 9 unilaterally decided to deny visitation, as prescribed by the
3 10 order or decree, in response to a non=life=threatening
3 11 emergency.
3 12 Sec. 4. Section 598.41, Code 2009, is amended by adding
3 13 the following new subsection:
3 14 NEW SUBSECTION. 7A. Unless the court finds that such a
3 15 provision is not in the best interest of the child, in any
3 16 custody order or decree in which the parents are awarded joint
3 17 legal custody, the order or decree shall provide that each
3 18 parent shall offer the other parent the opportunity for
3 19 additional time with the child before making other
3 20 arrangements for temporary care of the child if, during the
3 21 time a parent is otherwise responsible for providing physical
3 22 care of the child, the parent is unable to provide such
3 23 physical care for a period of time exceeding eight consecutive
3 24 hours.
3 25 EXPLANATION
3 26 This bill includes provisions relating to custody and
3 27 visitation of a child.
3 28 The bill allows students to be excused from school-related
3 29 extracurricular activities if the activity interferes with
3 30 scheduled visitation with a noncustodial parent. The bill
3 31 requires that when a parent informs a school official of a
3 32 conflict between an extracurricular activity scheduled outside
3 33 regular school hours and the student's custody arrangement
3 34 with a noncustodial parent, the student will be excused from
3 35 the activity without penalty. The bill provides exceptions
4 1 for special events such as performances, games, and
4 2 competitions. The bill covers all school=related
4 3 extracurricular activities, whether or not the activities are
4 4 related to the student's academic curriculum. The bill
4 5 requires the state board of education to adopt rules that will
4 6 enforce the bill.
4 7 The bill amends provisions relating to relocation of a
4 8 parent as grounds for modification of a child custody order.
4 9 Current law provides that if a parent who has been awarded
4 10 joint legal custody and physical care or sole legal custody is
4 11 relocating the residence of the minor child to a location
4 12 which is 150 miles or more from the residence of the minor
4 13 child at the time that custody was awarded, the court may
4 14 consider the relocation a substantial change in circumstances.
4 15 The bill provides that if the court determines that the
4 16 relocation is a substantial change in circumstances, in
4 17 determining the best interest of the child, the court may
4 18 modify the existing order that awarded joint legal custody and
4 19 physical care to the relocating parent and instead award joint
4 20 legal custody and physical care to the nonrelocating parent,
4 21 if the court finds that, in regard to the level of care
4 22 provided by each parent, the care provided by the
4 23 nonrelocating parent is equal to the level of care provided by
4 24 the relocating parent. If the court does modify the order and
4 25 awards joint legal custody and physical care to the
4 26 nonrelocating parent, the court is also to modify the custody
4 27 order to preserve, as nearly as possible, the existing
4 28 relationship between the minor child and the relocating
4 29 parent. Additionally, if the order is modified, the order may
4 30 include a provision for extended visitation during summer
4 31 vacations and school breaks and scheduled telephone contact
4 32 between the relocating parent and the minor child. The
4 33 modification may also include a provision assigning the
4 34 responsibility for transportation of the minor child for
4 35 visitation purposes to either or both parents.
5 1 Current law is retained regarding modification of the order
5 2 in a manner that retains the award of custody with the
5 3 relocating parent and the provisions relating to preserving
5 4 the existing relationship with the nonrelocating parent,
5 5 extended vacations and school breaks, telephone contact, and
5 6 provision for transportation of the minor child for visitation
5 7 purposes to either or both parents.
5 8 The bill amends the provision relating to posting of a cash
5 9 bond based on past interference by the relocating parent to
5 10 apply to both parents.
5 11 The bill provides that one basis for a finding of contempt
5 12 under the dissolution of marriage and domestic relations Code
5 13 chapter is that a person willfully disobeyed an order or
5 14 decree by unilaterally deciding to deny visitation, as
5 15 prescribed by the order or decree, in response to a
5 16 non=life=threatening emergency. The punishment for contempt
5 17 is commitment to the county jail for a period not to exceed 30
5 18 days for each offense, or an alternative penalty specified in
5 19 the section.
5 20 The bill also directs that, unless the court finds that it
5 21 is not in the best interest of the child, any custody order or
5 22 decree in which the parents are awarded joint legal custody
5 23 shall provide that each parent shall offer the other parent
5 24 the opportunity for additional time with the child before
5 25 making other arrangements for temporary care of the child if,
5 26 during the time a parent is otherwise responsible for
5 27 providing physical care of the child, the parent is unable to
5 28 provide such physical care for a period of time exceeding
5 29 eight consecutive hours.
5 30 LSB 1673YH 83
5 31 pf/nh/8
Does the last section that says they would have to offer if the parent can't provide physical care of 8 hours mean..........that if the ex takes vacation or is away for more than 8 hours that the other parent will have that time without going to court or will it have to modified in each dissolution decree????
Yes, if your former takes a vacation or is gone for more than 8 hours and does not offer you the opportunity to care for the children, she would be in contempt of court for violation of this statute.
If this bill passes and gets signed into law it will help you. Currently, the law reads the Court can modify if a substantial change in circumstances applies. However, under the current law, you must show the ability to administer "Superior Care" over the children. If passed, this bill changes the "Superior Care" rule to an "Equal Care" rule putting the modification on equal grounds. This means if the custodial parent decides to move, it wont be an automatic denial of a change of custody like it is now.
I am new at this so please be patient. Has the house bill been presented? If so when will it come up for debate? Who do I need to contact to show my support for this bill? Thank you! Bernice
I really don't think that there is a fast way to get this bill passed. It will all just take some time and patience.
WMT AM600 has meet your legislators on Friday. It rotates from either 10am or at 4 or 5 pm. Listen to WMT and call them on Friday. It will be a democrat and a republican. This is an opportunity to ask them publicly where they stand. If you are able to get into the show early enough we may be able to create a landslide of calls on this topic and it will create a lot of future discussion on this show and others around the community.
NewsRadio 600 WMT Studio Call-in Numbers: 319-365-0600 800-332-5401*600 on your US Cellular Phone
Legislative Action Alert
Thanks James. I've dealt with legislators of both parties for several years and I don't understand why the Democrats refuse to support fathers having equal rights with their children.
I don't know why democrate refuse to support us either other then their preferance for welth redistrubution.I am working to change this in that party.
This bill is still alive and we are going to push it again this year.
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