You're getting a divorce, and you were startled when the papers from your spouse's lawyer set forth a clause for no overnight guests when you have your children with you. You'd never heard of such a provision, and you're not entirely comfortable with it. If you haven't yet hired your own lawyer, it's probably time to do so. You'll have trouble protecting your rights in this situation when going up against a skilled attorney without your own professional legal representation.
No Overnight Guests
A parent may choose to stipulate no overnight guests when the children are present, although this doesn't always hold up in court. Perhaps this parent wants to protect the children from proximity to a sexual relationship, or what might be viewed as an overly familiar situation with a new boyfriend or girlfriend.
This parent may want to make sure the children don't become attached to a new person and then have to deal with a subsequent breakup. Another reason for these provisions is when a spouse has been unfaithful and the other spouse wants to restrict that particular romantic relationship.
A mother or father also might include this type of clause for moral and religious reasons.
When You Develop a Serious Relationship
Parents who are sharing custody, or who have weekly or bi-weekly visitation, often are OK with this provision because there is plenty of time for them to have overnight guests when the kids aren't there. It mainly becomes a problem when one of the parents develops a serious relationship and wants to be with their new partner all the time. Typically, the divorced couple goes back to court to resolve the situation.
Sometimes a parent tries to avoid going back to court by having the new partner move in, figuring this makes that individual a resident rather than a guest. This isn't a good idea, since judges could see this as a tricky maneuver, and it could have a serious negative impact on the custody or visitation arrangement.
Considering Your Future
If your children are very young, a judge is more likely to uphold the "no overnight guests" provision. He or she may uphold the provision even if your children are preteens or teens, depending on your circumstances.
Your best option for now may be to accept this provision and revisit it in the future if you eventually find someone you want to cohabit with or marry. Even if your ex tries to fight the petition for change, a judge may look more favorably on the situation if you have established a relatively long relationship and if your children have had time to bond with this new person.
Contact a divorce lawyer such as Hitchings L Timothy today for assistance.Share
27 February 2015
My name is Laura, and I am an attorney specializing in helping clients leave violent marriages. The law can help victims be safe, but many potential clients cannot afford legal services and may be afraid to pursue divorce. They may not be aware of services that have been created to keep them hidden from violent ex-partners and to help them be awarded assets in a divorce so they can provide for themselves and their families. I hope to raise awareness of these issues as well as help direct people in danger to facilities where they can receive guidance and financial assistance.