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Can I Forbid My Ex From Bringing Their New Partner Around Our Child? 

Iwanyshyn & Associates   May 1, 2023

Family figure and gavel on tableIn the case of divorce or separation, co-parenting can sometimes become a contentious issue. While most couples can sort things out amicably, disputes can arise when one parent introduces a new partner to the children.

If you would like to forbid your ex from bringing their new partner around your children, it is vital to contact Iwanyshyn & Associates to discuss your options. Our team has everything necessary to fight for the best interests of your loved ones. Our family law attorneys in Allison Park, Pennsylvania, also serve clients in Gibsonia, Pittsburgh, Cranberry, and Wexford.  

Can You Control Who Sees Your Kids When the Other Partner Has Custody?

When you share custody with your ex, you need to accept the fact that they have the right to take care of your child when they have the child in their custody. While you may not be able to control who your ex brings into their home to have contact with your child during their time, you do have a right to set guidelines and establish boundaries.  

For instance, if you have concerns about your ex’s new partner’s behavior, expressing your concerns to your ex in a calm and reasonable manner may be helpful. If it does not help, you can take legal action by requesting changes to the custody agreement. The court will grant the requested changes if the child’s well-being or safety is at risk around your ex’s new partner.  

What to Do If You Have a New Partner

In the event that you have a new partner and share custody with your ex, introducing your new partner to your child can be a sensitive issue. It is important to approach the situation carefully and with your child’s best interests in mind. You should communicate with your ex about your intentions to introduce a new partner to your child. It is crucial to remember that your ex also has a right to know who is spending time with their child, and so do you.  

What Not to Do

It is essential to avoid introducing your child to your new partner too early in the relationship. You should be confident that your new partner is the right fit for you and your child. You should give your new partner time to get to know you and your child before introducing them. Otherwise, your child may become confused or uncomfortable. Additionally, avoid badmouthing your ex in front of your child, as this could negatively affect their relationship with their other parent. 

What to Do If You Suspect Your Children Are at Risk 

If you suspect that your child is at risk because of your ex’s new partner, you need to take action immediately. It is important to gather any information you can about the situation to substantiate your concerns. You should then contact an attorney to explore the options available to you.  

Document any evidence you have and keep a record of any communication with your ex in case legal action is necessary. The evidence you present should convince the court that your child’s well-being or safety is at risk.  

Changing the Custody Agreement

The court will usually give primary consideration to the child’s best interests. If you believe the child’s safety or well-being is at risk, the court may grant a modification to the custody or visitation agreement. However, it’s important to note that the court will not modify a custody agreement solely because the petitioner does not like their ex-partner’s new partner. The parent who is seeking the modification must provide sufficient evidence to support their claim that the new partner’s relationship with the child poses a risk.  

In Pennsylvania, parents who wish to modify a custody order can use the “Petition for Modification of a Custody Order” form, as provided by the official website of the Unified Judicial System of Pennsylvania, to request changes.  

The court will consider factors such as the new partner’s criminal or drug record, history of violence or abuse, and evidence of neglect or harm to a child. Indicators of harm could include the child’s behavioral changes, increased anxiety or fear, and testimony from witnesses. If the court finds that the child’s safety or well-being is at risk due to the new partner’s actions or presence as a whole, this may warrant changes to the custody agreement.  

How Can a Family Law Attorney Help?

If you have concerns about your child’s safety or well-being because of your ex’s new partner, you need to work with a skilled attorney who can guide you through the legal process. Our family law attorneys at Iwanyshyn & Associates can also help you gather evidence to support your case and make sure your child’s best interests are protected. Reach out to our office in Allison Park, Pennsylvania, for a consultation.