The following article discusses Britney Spears' current attempts to have additional visitations after a Judge ordered for her joint custody to be revoked and that she should only have supervised visitation.
A week after Britney Spears lost the right to see her children unsupervised, she requested more visitation time. On Thursday (October 11), the singer's lawyer requested an emergency hearing to see if the judge in Spears' custody case would extend her visitation time with her two sons to include overnight stays, now that she's passed her first week of random drug tests. Federline opposed the request, but the judge, Superior Court Commissioner Scott Gordon, has asked the couple to try to work it out outside the court.
Federline's lawyer, Mark Vincent Kaplan, opposed the request on the grounds that it was premature, as Spears' progress report is scheduled to be submitted to the court on October 22, with a hearing to follow on October 26 to reassess. "The fact that a party, one week after a full court hearing, attempts to change the orders of the court, in the absence of an emergency or without any new facts, suggests a continued lack of respect and understanding for what an order of the court actually means," Kaplan said in a statement.
Spears' attorney, Anne Kiley, argued that the singer's request was for the benefit of the children, because the current visitation schedule is disruptive to the boys' sleeping schedules and requires them to be woken up from their naps. Kiley called it "traumatizing" for Sean Preston and Jayden James to be without their mother, but Gordon countered that it could be just as traumatizing for the boys to be around a mother who has substance-abuse and emotional issues. The judge said on Thursday that he was not going to modify his previous order, and that Spears' and Federline's lawyers would have to work out a compromise, which, despite a 45-minute separate conference, doesn't appear to have had results as yet. Spears didn't attend the first half of the hearing but arrived midafternoon for the second half.
Just one week ago, Gordon had allowed Spears monitored visitation with her children several days a week, possibly as much as every other day (see "Britney Spears Allowed Supervised Visitation Of Children; Judge Warns Singer To Take Him Seriously"). Spears was also ordered to complete at least three individual counseling sessions and at least three joint parenting-counseling sessions with Federline by the next hearing.
"It's only been a week since the judge's last ruling, and Britney has yet to prove that she can follow those orders," celebrity-divorce attorney Raoul Felder said. "At this point, for her, it's a celebration of hope over reality. I don't think she has a chance."
Legal experts had predicted that the most Spears could hope for would be to slowly build back fuller visitation rights (see "Britney Spears, Legally Speaking: Top Lawyers Say She Can Get Kids Back, If She Follows Advice"). New York divorce lawyer Lois Liberman estimated that Spears would be allowed one- to two-hour supervised visits before she could build to longer stays, such as overnights or weekends, and it would take at least three months of clean drug-testing before the court would consider allowing Spears unsupervised visits with her children.
[This story was originally published at 3:08 pm E.T. on 10.11.2007]