Ask A Lawyer: Can My Girlfriend Help Me Take Care Of My Daughter?

Question:

Though there are no stipulations in my divorce decree that I can find, my ex-wife insists that I always be present when my daughter is staying at my house.

My girlfriend of 6 years who is a very stable writer works from home and absolutely loves to take care of my daughter who is 5. My ex-wife, however, keeps insisting that they not be alone together. 

This might involve days when my daughter stays home from school when she is sick. My ex says that on days such as those I must take her to the daycare of my ex-wife’s choosing because my wife cannot take off from work. My ex has gone so far as to say that I am not allowed to leave my daughter home with my girlfriend if I go out for an errand, such as to get dinner.

 

Answer:

You need to consult an attorney in your jurisdiction as custody guidelines vary from state to state; however your wife cannot unilaterally dictate the terms of your parenting plan.  If there is nothing in your divorce decree that prevents your girlfriend from having unsupervised contact with your daughter you can continue to have your girlfriend watch your daughter when you are not able. 

 

Tiffany A. McFarland is a Senior Attorney and Litigation Manager with Cordell & Cordell, P.C. in the Overland Park, Kansas and Kansas City, Missouri offices. Ms. McFarland practices exclusively in the area of domestic relations. 

Tiffany is licensed in the state of Missouri and the state of Kansas and is certified as a Guardian ad Litem.

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One comment on “Ask A Lawyer: Can My Girlfriend Help Me Take Care Of My Daughter?

    worried grandmother
    According to state law, a person cannot provide care for unrelated children in their home for more than four weeks per calendar year unless they are licensed or registered with the state. Failure to do so is a misdemeanor punishable with fines or jail time. Leave your child with a blood relative

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