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Dear Attorneys,

I want to file an emergency motion, and my lawyer told me that she doesn’t recommend it. I think that my son’s father is behaving completely inappropriately in front of him. He drinks a lot, smokes marijuana, and swears all the time. I don’t think that it’s safe (or healthy) for our son. What do I do?



Dear Pearl,

The standard for filing an emergency (ex parte) motion is “immediate physical or psychological harm.” There is also a carve out for situations where coercive control is a factor. However, we always tell clients that the courts are “reactive,” rather than “proactive.” That means that, often,  a court will not take action until something negative has already happened. That can be incredibly frustrating for people. However, it ultimately boils down to having proof of the “facts” that you are alleging. For example, how do you know that he drinks a lot, smokes marijuana and swears a lot? Is your child telling you? If so, how old is your child? Is he a reliable reporter? Has he admitted to these things in writing? Has he ever driven your son somewhere after smoking marijuana or drinking? Usually, the reason to not move forward with an ex parte motion is simply lack of proof.  However, make sure to have an in-depth conversation with your attorney to find out her reasoning and ensure that you are both on the same page.

Remember, you don’t have to navigate this challenging situation alone. Seek support from experienced professionals who can guide you through the legal process and help you make informed decisions. Wolf & Shore Law Group is here to help you make your family law matters easier, not harder.  We are realistic and direct with our clients. We encourage potential clients to seek out a firm where they will feel comfortable and confident. Ever argue with a woman? Let Wolf & Shore Law Group go to work for you. Call us at 203.745.3151 or email us at

Very Truly Yours,

Wolf & Shore Law Group

*The situations represented in our Dear Attorneys column are entirely fictional and any resemblance to a specific case is unintentional. We cannot, and will not, offer legal advice to anyone who is not a client. However, if you do have questions or concerns, you should contact an attorney at your convenience.

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