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After video goes viral, father wants more than just visitation

When two Louisiana parents share a child but are no longer romantically involved, there is usually an agreement in place that outlines the division of parenting time and responsibilities. Over time, that agreement might need to be modified if circumstances change or if the custody or visitation arrangement is not in the best interests of the shared child. An example is found in the case of a father who is seeking a greater degree of responsibility after his daughter gained notoriety after an appearance on a talk show.

The child is 13 years old, and was featured on an episode of Dr. Phil. Her rude and dismissive attitude led a section of the video to go viral. She has since become the subject of numerous memes. She has also gained a minor degree of fame, and has been invited to appear on other television programs and to travel to Los Angeles.

The girl's mother has sole decision-making responsibility for her daughter, while the father has liberal visitation rights. However, her father now feels that his daughter is being exploited by her mother, and is being allowed to behave inappropriately in order to take advantage of her 15 minutes of pseudo-fame. He has asked the court to grant him more decision-making rights, and is hoping to have more of an influence on his daughter's life.

In cases such as this, the court is tasked with determining if a child's actions and living scenario is conducive to a happy and healthy lifestyle. The father in this case has also claimed that the girl's mother has allowed her to drop out of school before completing the seventh grade. If that is true, then the court is very likely to rule in the father's favor. While most Louisiana parents will not have to deal with the aftermath of a viral video, many will struggle to come to terms with the parenting decisions made by their former partner. Some of those cases will end up before a court of law, with a request for a visitation or custody change.

Source: palmbeachpost.com, "Cash me outside: Teen's father files lawsuit to gain more rights", Liz Balmaseda, March 10, 2017

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