Bruce C. Zivley, Attorney at Law

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During custody disputes, avoid having romantic guests over

You and your child’s other parent may have decided to separate for any number of reasons. One reason may have been that you felt much more connected to another romantic partner. Or perhaps that was not a factor in your separation or divorce, but you have since become interested in another person romantically. Your love life is unquestionably personal and should be respected as such. However, a family law judge may find your romantic activities relevant to your child custody dispute, so it is important to be careful.

Until your child custody dispute is fully resolved, it is generally a bad idea to entertain overnight guests. This is especially true if your children are sleeping in the house at the time. If you want to be extra careful, and in child custody cases it is almost always a good idea to be extra careful, avoid entertaining romantic guests at your home in any capacity until the dispute is over.

You may be looking for committed companionship or you may simply be looking to connect with others. Neither of these desires is anything to be ashamed of. However, your child’s other parent and/or a family law judge may question your ability to focus on parenting your children in committed ways if you begin dating or entertaining romantic guests while you are still involved in your child custody dispute.

What you choose to do in this area of your life is ultimately up to you. However, it is important for you to remember that being involved romantically during the duration of your child custody dispute may result in negative consequences for your ultimate child custody arrangements.

Source: The Huffington Post, “How Overnight Dates Could Seriously Damage Your Custody Case,” Lenore Skonal, March 10, 2014

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