Can One Parent Make Education Decisions For The Child During A Separation?

St. Louis divorce lawyerQuestion:

My wife and I in a separation period, though still legally married. My wife and her mother (my mother-in-law) are trying to change my son’s school district, presumably closer to my wife so she would have a better chance at getting custody.

My wife is also planning on giving her mother power of attorney so that she will have the right to review and determine our child’s education.

Can she give her mother power of attorney without my consent and then move my son to another school district?

Answer:

I am unable to give you legal advice on divorce. I can give general divorce help for men, though, my knowledge is based on Missouri divorce laws where I am licensed to practice.

Generally, unless there is a court judgment awarding sole legal custody of a child to one parent, both parents maintain joint legal custody of their children. This means that one parent cannot make a unilateral decision regarding a child’s schooling without the consent of the other parent.

Considering you and your spouse are still married and assuming no court orders have been entered temporarily giving sole legal custody to your wife, you maintain joint legal custody of your son.

Therefore, no decisions regarding school can be unilaterally made by your wife, or mother-in-law, without your consent. Even if your mother-in-law is given a power of attorney, she is only entitled to your wife’s portion of legal custody: 50 percent.

Thus, she still cannot make unilateral decisions without your consent.

Remember, I am unable to provide you with anything more than divorce tips for men, so please consult with a divorce lawyer in your jurisdiction.

To arrange an initial consultation to discuss divorce rights for men with a Cordell & Cordell attorney, including St. Louis Divorce Lawyer Brittany Brown, contact Cordell & Cordell.

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