In A.L. v V.T.L., the Family Court, Rockland County, was asked to consider the standard for changing a custody agreement that gave one parent final decision-making authority over health-related decision for the children. Here, the issue that led to the dispute was the mother’s decision to vaccinate their younger child for COVID.
The parties married on January 26, 2008. The have two children together: A.T.L. born in 2008 and M.T.L. born in 2010. The parties divorced on May 28, 2015. They signed a Stipulation of Settlement on March 27, 2015 which provide that the parties were to have joint legal custody of the children and that the parties were to jointly consult and agree with each other with respect to the children’s health. It also stated that in the event the parties are unable to agree upon a decision, the mother shall have final decision making authority, subject to the father’s right to seek court intervention.