Greetings. First, I normally do not read such long posts, but this was a very compelling story…and the welfare of children is an issue close to my heart.
Let’s get you some answers:
Yes, I would ask the court to immediately limit Mom’s time with the children. No, I would not ask for a restraining order for the Friend, since if you reduce Mom’s time, you automatically reduce Friend’s time. Also, you can ask in the order that Friend not be allowed around the children. You cannot simply refuse to provide the children, but instead you must file an action with the court about this.
You could get the court order in a day or two if you act quickly and retain a diligent attorney. Well before the weekend visit.
Possibly. Have you talked to Mom at all? Maybe making her aware of her destructive behavior would also be a good move now. I think that setting guidelines for the visitation would be more likely than supervised visitation - but you never know depending on the judge.
No, not likely that she would need to testify. You and your husband can testify about her fear, reaction, etc.
Yes, counseling would probably help since this child likely has abandonment issues and now will be dealing with trying to figure out how to judge mom and what type of relationship she can have with her, etc. I don’t doubt that counseling for both of them would be appropriate.
Yes, I would argue that it is wrong. I honestly don’t know if it is a criminal offense, as that is a question for the district attorney. My first priority though would be protecting the children.
My advice is to hire an attorney today and make sure they do not have to go this weekend until ground rules for visitation can be set in stone. Best of luck.
Janet L. Fritts
Attorney with Rosen Divorce
4101 Lake Boone Trail, Suite 500
Raleigh, North Carolina 27607
The response posted above is based upon the limited factual information made available and is not intended as a full and complete response to the question. The only reliable manner to obtain complete and adequate legal advice is to consult with an attorney, fully explain your situation, and allow the attorney sufficient opportunity to research the applicable law and facts required to render an accurate opinion. The basic information provided above is intended as a public service but a full discussion with an attorney should be undertaken before taking any action.