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Dealing With Overly Involved Family Members In Child Custody Cases

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How to Deal with an over-involved family member that causes problems in your divorce case

After a divorce or other type of child custody case, it is very common for the other parent’s family to become overly involved in issues and decisions that should be left to the child’s parents. The most common manifestation of this will be in either maternal or paternal grandmother although it is also a common occurrence for other family members as well such as siblings and extended family.

When an extended family member gets overly involved in the divorce or custody case is usually only complicates and stalls the already difficult process of two parents learning to communicate and co-parent. This is because where normally there are two different personalities trying to get along to raise a child in separate homes the overly involved family member adds a third voice to the already tenuous process making it nearly impossible for the parents to get along for the good of the child.

In cases where we see overly involved family members, we usually note that the parent whom they believe themselves to be advocating for is happy to let someone else do the work of co-parenting for them. This can be a problem if these cases go to court because one of the statutory factors for determining custody cases is the extent to which parents delegate parenting responsibilities to third parties. This absolutely can include communicating with the other parent on parenting decisions.

Other ways that the over-involved extended family member causes problems can include insisting on communicating and being involved in important parenting decisions, starting arguments and other confrontations with the other parent, and having inappropriate communication with the child regarding the other parent and the custody litigation.

The other very common issue that the custody attorneys at Sean Smallwood, P.A. and judges observe with the over-involved family members is that they are prone to having inappropriate communication with children, exposing them to the litigation and making remarks to the child that are derogatory to the other parent as stated above. The problem with this is that it causes needless stress to the children and can lead to serious issues for children going through custody issues.

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