After a divorce, many now-single Denver parents and others around the nation begin to move on with lives. This includes finding new relationships. In some cases, the new relationship could start during the divorce, as some divorces can take months or even years to finalize. Some parents may wonder if there could be a problem with child custody if they were to have an overnight guest. The answer is yes, and some of the reasons are listed below.
While every person deserves the chance to have a relationship after a divorce, an overnight date, boyfriend or girlfriend could be asked to submit to a psychological evaluation. The other parent may feel that he or she is not someone who should be around the children. In addition, getting into a serious relationship during your separation or divorce might not cast you in the most positive light with the court.
In some states, a person only has to stay overnight three times in order for the court to consider it cohabitating. Those overnight visits don't even have to be all in a row. If there are alimony payments, a claim of cohabitation could effectively lower or stop the payments.
If your ex is prone to jealousy or even violence, having someone spend the night could cause a verbal or physical incident. This is certainly not something that the children or you need to experience.
Finally, one relationship expert says that parents who have an overnight guest could be harming their children. At the very least, she says that it could set a bad example for the children, no matter how old they may be. She likens it to "monkey see, monkey do."
While moving on from the divorce includes new relationships, it is best to avoid the overnight guests when your children are present. Setting morality aside, there are simply too many potential problems. If you need more information, an experienced Colorado family law attorney can provide answers to your questions.
Source: Huffington Post, "How Overnight Dates Could Seriously Damage Your Custody Case" Lenore Skonal, Mar. 10, 2014