This Article reveals the disconnect between the power and the will to enforce the custody and parenting time provisions of protection orders through criminal mechanisms and explores the further infirmity of civil enforcement by illustrating the shortcomings of available relief. Together, these barriers to effective enforcement threaten to render this court-granted protection meaningless and dangerously misleading. The barriers also undermine the many years of advocacy invested to secure these protections in the first place - reforms aimed at protecting victims and children from abusive parents.
This Article explores ways to bring together the will and the power to enforce all aspects of protection orders criminally and to shore up the relief available through civil contempt so that the family law provisions of protection orders are more than illusory. This Article explores the ways in which the hard-fought system reforms now fail to offer protection to survivors in previously unforeseeable ways and also pushes further by seeking to explore and resolve the lack of reliable enforcement remedies in this area in a way that not only keeps survivors safe but contemplates the important interests of children at issue and the enhanced enforceability of civil injunctions generally.
GW Paper Series
Laurie S. Kohn, The False Promise of Custody In Domestic Violence Protection Orders, 65 DePaul L. Rev. 1001 (2016).