You’ve separated from your partner and he now has a new girlfriend. He sees nothing wrong with that girlfriend being present during visitation with your kids. You think that she should not be there. You are not alone. This is a very common issue in the world of custody and visitation.

For purposes of this article, let’s use the example of partners whom have separated that have a young daughter. The father now has a new girlfriend and he insists that she be present during visitation.

The first question I ask my client in this situation is “why don’t you want this new person to be there?” Some say that they don’t know her. Others say that the parents have not been separated long enough and they think it is too soon to introduce new loves to the child. Some say that the party is a bad influence because of attitude, alcohol, etc. Still others say that the child just doesn’t like this person. So, does “why” really matter?

“Why?” really does matter because it determines how the Court will respond and if there is a remedy to the situation. If it is a situation where the parties have only recently separated, it may be a good compromise to wait several months before either party introduces a new love. If it is a situation where the child doesn’t like the person, perhaps a warming up period is in order. If it is a situation where safety is at stake (ie alcohol abuse), there may be a way to prevent her from being present or a way to enforce provisions that can be put in place to ensure safety.

As always, the devil is in the details! Every situation is different and will be determined on a case by case basis. Contact us today for an evaluation of your situation. Let us help you with it!