Enforce Custody & Visitation
If a parent is not following a custody order, there are different options available to get the court's help. Read this section for more information about the ways to handle custody violations.
Only use these forms if you already have a custody order from the 8th Judicial District Court in Clark County NV. If you have a custody order from another state that you need to enforce, visit Enforcing Out-of-State Orders for information on how to get a Nevada court to assist in enforcing your order.
When a parent won't follow a Nevada custody or visitation order, you have two options:
- File a Motion To Enforce Custody and Visitation: When you simply want the other parent to obey the custody and visitation order, you can file a Motion to Enforce Custody and Visitation. The judge will have you both appear in court to find out why the visitation schedule is not being followed, and may award make-up time for any time with the children that was missed. You can request an emergency hearing to get the matter heard as quickly as possible.
- Request a "Pickup Order" to have the child immediately returned to you: When there is an emergency and you want the child returned to you right away, you can ask the court to give you a "Pickup Order" that awards you temporary sole custody. This is usually the kind of order law enforcement requires before they will get involved in custody and visitation issues. These orders are only granted in true emergencies.
This motion tells the judge how the custody/visitation order is not being followed. The judge will have you both appear in court, and may award make-up time for any time with the children that was missed.
1. Fill out the forms
You have to fill out both of these forms:
Motion / Opposition Fee Information Sheet (pdf fillable) (There is typically a $25 filing fee due when you file your motion. If you originally got a divorce by filing a Joint Petition for Divorce, the Court will charge an additional $129 the first time you file a motion and reopen your case)
2. File the forms
The clerk will issue a Clerk's Notice of Hearing setting a court date when you file this motion.
If you want the judge to hear your case quicker because of urgent issues, you can apply for an emergency hearing. It will be up to the judge to decide whether to move your court date up. To ask for an emergency hearing, fill out both forms below.
3. Serve the Other Party
It is up to YOU to make sure the other party is served; the court does not serve the papers for you! You must have the other party served with all the documents you filed plus the Clerk's Notice of Hearing.
- First, you must serve a copy of your motion and any other documents you filed within 3 days of filing the motion. You can usually serve by regular mail or through the court's e-filing system if the other party is registered, but some judges may require something else. Check with your judge's staff if you are not sure. If the judge requires personal service, follow the steps in the bullet point below instead.
Complete a Certificate of Service after serving the documents. If you are serving by mail but do not know where the other parent lives, check your case to find out what address the court has listed for the person. You are expected to mail the documents to any address the court has listed for the person, plus any other addresses where you think the person is living. File the Certificate of Service with the court.
- Second, if the judge grants your Order Shortening Time, someone else will have to personally serve the other parent with a copy of the Order Shortening Time after the judge signs it. Whoever serves the other parent must complete an Affidavit of Service that states when, where, and what documents were served. File the Affidavit of Service with the court before your hearing.
Affidavit of Service (pdf fillable)
4. Attend the Hearing
The judge will hear from both of you at the hearing and decide what to do. You can attend by phone or video for most hearings (learn more about how to request a phone or video appearance on the Motions page). The judge may offer "makeup" visitation for you and the children. Let the judge know if you have a proposal for when you would like the children to make up for the time you lost.
Pickup orders are reserved for true emergencies. If there is not an emergency, judges typically prefer that you file a Motion to Enforce Custody and Visitation and appear at a hearing first.
If there is an emergency and you want the child returned to you immediately, you can ask for an "Pickup Order" that awards you temporary sole custody. If granted, the judge will give you an order for custody without you needing to appear in court. This is usually the kind of order law enforcement requires before they will get involved in custody or visitation issues. You can also contact the Nevada State Advocate for Missing and Exploited Children for possible assistance in having the child returned to you. Visit Missing Children for more information.
To ask for a pickup order, fill out both of these forms:
The judge will review your documents. The judge's staff will let you know whether your order is approved or denied. If the order is approved, you can contact law enforcement for assistance in retrieving the child. If the order is denied, you may need to file a Motion to Enforce Visitation or Custody so the judge can hear from both parents in court before deciding what to order.