What to do if my ex-wife is stating she has a right to first refusal for times when I can’t bring my kids to their sporting events?

We have joint legal custody. I am the custodial parent and she has visitation rights but I maintain physical custody. She is a multiple-time convicted felon and has a personality disorder so I want to limit my kids time with her. There’s no stipulations in our custody order regarding right of first refusal so does she have this right?

Asked on September 2, 2012 under Family Law, South Dakota


M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

I would speak with your attorney just to clarify and ask about how case law comes down on this because your ex is going to fight you and you need to be prepared.  E.M. is correct that from what you have written your ex does not seem to posses that right. But it does not mean that she will not try and claim it.  Good luck.

FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

From what you have written, if the child custody and visitation order clearly spells out the times that you and the "ex" have the children then the order controls particularly if there is no mention of any "right of first refusal". As such, the "ex" has no "right of first refusal" to exercise when it comes to your children based upon what you have written.

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