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Samuel II
Samuel II, Attorney at Law
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 27010
Experience:  General practice of law with emphasis in family law.
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I am in the process of trying to get divorced. My husband

Customer Question

I am in the process of trying to get divorced. My husband and I agreed to try to resolve some matters together and mediate the divorce instead of hiring attorneys. We had tentatively agreed on some terms for the visitation of our child. He then stated that he wants the right of first refusal added into our agreement.
1. We are getting divorced bc my husband mistreats my son (who is 1) and I....yells, screams, curses in our faces, throws things, punches or hits things, slams doors, grabs and pushes me, gets in my face, has been gruff with our son (man handled him from when he was a new born until 7 months old...this is when I moved away from my husband) etc.
2. Bc of #1 is visitation is rather limited and I am present for all visits that dont occur at my son's daycare
3. I think my husband is very controlling
4. My therapist and even our marriage counselor (psychologist) have stated that he is a narcissistic sociopathHe is demanding that it be added or he will not resolve matters so that we can get divorced. So, I either need to include it in our agreement so that we can resolve matters and mediate the divorce OR we will need to hire attorneys and go through the divorce process that way. As a side note, this is not the first time he threw up a roadblock / hurdle to delay or stop progress from being made to get divorced.If I agree to right of first refusal, I am:
1. Giving up my privacy bc I will need to inform him of every time I want / need to do something without my son
2. Having to be more involved an have more contact with my husband than I want to have
3. Allowing him to know what I do in my personal lifeWhile I can and do see the positive points to someone having the right of first refusal, I only see a downside to it with the situation I am in. He gets to continue to have control over me. I am forced to live under his thumb. My son would be alone with my husband when at no other time would this be allowed. My privacy is being invaded.I realize I have said a lot and youre only looking for the question I want answered, but I wanted to give the background before I asked it:Can the courts make me agree to right of first refusal? I have talked with some attorneys and they have stated that they highly discourage ppl from having this clause bc it creates further issues between the 2 parents that then negatively impacts the child. Does the judge consider this when he makes his decision?
Submitted: 9 months ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  Samuel II replied 9 months ago.

Hello

This is Samuel. I am reviewing your questions and will respond here shortly. Thank you for your patience.

Expert:  Samuel II replied 9 months ago.

Thank you. I suggest you can try to come to a compromise of you agreeing to RFR as long as it is supervised. And so while you would need to make him aware of situations when you are not able to be caring for your children, and I understand that it is annoying because of his controlling ways, you also can set the stipulation that if his RFR is exercised, it must be with an approved by you chaperone.

If it goes to court and you present solid evidence of why he should not have unsupervised visits, then I suggest a court will consider how it is in the best interest of the child. That will be the court's standard.

Expert:  Samuel II replied 9 months ago.

And so a RFR generally is not granted by a court if there is a chance the child may be mistreated in anyway. And if you have that evidence, then you should be able to present it and show the court how it would not be in the child's best interest to be alone with the Father - in addition, the control over you by knowing whenever you have plans that would preclude you from being with the child. And if that is the basis of the divorce - the domestic emotional abuse to you - I suggest a court will take all of that into consideration.

Expert:  Samuel II replied 9 months ago.

However, there is no guarantee how a court will rule. And if the court agrees to the RFR, you can again try to get the stipulation that it would be supervised with an approved party.

Customer: replied 9 months ago.
he wont agree to have a chaperone. i would very much like to mediate and avoid the messiness of a court battle, but im not going to be manipulated into doing so. im a very private person....i dont want to air our dirty laundry about him being angry and emotionally and mentally abusive. if we mediate, i can keep this private. if we go to court, i would need to state all of this. do you have another suggestion on how to appease him but not force me to have the rofr clause in our agreement?
Expert:  Samuel II replied 9 months ago.

Unfortunately, no. Those would be your options. I fully understand your situation and really wish there was a better way. But as you note, he is controlling and abusive and still wants that control. If it cannot be resolved in mediation then court would be your recourse.

Expert:  Samuel II replied 9 months ago.

I don't know him at all. You would have a better handle on how to "appease" him than I would.

Expert:  Samuel II replied 9 months ago.

I can only make suggestions as to what is available for you and what to consider as you proceed. I suggest you can make the stipulation for supervised to follow the rest of the visitation agreement - and see what happens. Maybe he will simply agree to that.

Expert:  Samuel II replied 9 months ago.

It is in line with the rest of the agreement so the RFR should not be any different.

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