Courts typically want both parents to see the children after a divorce. They won’t deviate from this simply because you would rather have the kids or because you want to keep the children away from your ex out of spite. Regardless of gender and other factors, they want the children to have established relationships with both parents since it is seen as better for the children’s growth and development — and, therefore, in their best interests.
But what if your issues have nothing to do with spite or what you want, and everything to do with the children’s safety? Maybe you’re worried about abuse, drug use, criminal activity or something of this nature. Perhaps you just don’t think the living situation your ex will be in will prove safe for your kids. Can you prevent your ex from seeing them?
You cannot do this on your own
First and foremost, if your ex has a right to see or contact the children, granted by the court, you can’t infringe on that right yourself. In other words, don’t take things into your own hands. Instead, petition the court to explain why you think those custody rights should not be allowed.
Of course, if this is a physical abuse issue and you think your child is in danger, you may have more immediate actions you can take, such as getting a restraining order or a no-contact order. The court system does not want children to be in actual danger and will work to protect them. They just don’t want parents using alleged danger as an excuse to take away custody rights when such a thing is not happening.
If your desires are warranted, there are ways to remove custody rights through the initial court order during the divorce or, if the issues happen after the split, through a modification of that order. You simply have to demonstrate that it is actually in the children’s best interests not to have contact with the other parent.
How to work within the system
You can see that it’s very important to do things by the book and work properly within the court system. The more that you know about this process, the better.