Question asked on July 31, 2020
Q: My ex-husband’s new wife has been conclusively proven to have been cheating and behaving immorally while representing her country in national and international competition as a professional (paid) bridge player. The facts are not in dispute and she is being suspended from the bridge organizations. There have been previous proven allegations of fraud and poor conduct in the art world. Do I have any legal right to demand that my child not be exposed to her? My ex-husband lives in the USA and only is entitled to visitation once a month plus half of Christmas and 3 weeks in the summer, but rarely even takes that. He hasn’t seen my child since last summer, and due to COVID-19 visitation is not currently an option anyway.
A: Short answer is “yes” — but realize that in a situation in which both you and your ex have rights of custody (including visitation), both of you have the right to “determine the associations of our child” and he is unlikely to share your evaluation of his new wife. If the two of you are at impasse on the subject, the only other alternative is to pursue a court order restricting potential contact. Such orders have been entered in situations of, say, child abuse by a person, but a history cheating at bridge might be a bit of a stretch for a family court judge to find any kind of significant or imminent danger to a child. If you wish, you could consult with a family law specialist to go over your specific concerns.