Run a background check on other parent’s new partner
People love to discredit the new boyfriend or the new girlfriend of their ex-wives and ex-husbands. New partners can never understand what he’s like or what she’s like. And new partners are always accused of being incompatible with the children.
Rather than simply pointing fingers and quietly defaming each other, it is often useful to actually investigate the new partner’s background. It may turn out that the new partner has a prior criminal history for sexual molestation of minors, or that he’s on probation for serious drug offenses. Especially if the new partner is cohabiting with the parent, there may be important questions as to his or her safety, conduct, behavior and personal associations.
At relatively little cost, you can conduct a “people search” on line through a variety of search portals. You can dig up the prior addresses of the new partner, what property (cars, boats, airplanes) are registered to his name, whether he has a criminal history, a prior bankruptcy or judgments, and whether, in fact, he has a prior name or alias. With the assistance of a private investigator, you may be able to unearth even more information.
Of course, not every case will justify such an investigation. Moreover, the results of the investigation may not always be useful. For example, the fact that your ex-wife’s new live-in boyfriend filed for bankruptcy five years ago poses no obvious threat to your children’s health, safety and welfare.
Still, a background check may be a useful tactic that can influence your course of action and provide information that can help you leverage your negotiating position.