Divorce Court Judge Says Divorcing Couple’s Daughter Not Allowed to Play Golf

July 8, 2016

A child custody dispute in a Virginia divorce case has resulted in a novel ruling from a circuit court judge: the couple’s young daughter will not be allowed to play competitive golf.

The divorce between Michael Vechery and Florence Cottet-Moine was extremely contentious, with the former married couple engaging in divorce proceedings for more than seven years. During that time, their daughter has grown up: she is now 10 years old.

Jeanette Irby, a Circuit Court judge in Loudoun County, Virginia, presided over the divorce case and recently handed down a ruling that has led to a great deal of shock by interested observers.

The divorcing couple’s daughter has been a standout on the golf links and is said to be one of the best young golfers in the United States. She has won a number of golf tournaments held in the Mid-Atlantic region of the US and even got a mention in national newspapers after she participated in an 18-hole tournament at the Algonkian Golf Course in Sterling, Virginia. Kris Tschetter, a former professional golfer on the LPGA tour who has given golf lessons to the young phenom, said that the kid may already be talented enough to be a member of a good college golf team.

Now it appears that the 10-year-old girl will be taking some time off from her chosen sport after the divorce court judge ruled that the ex-spouses’ child “shall not be permitted to play competitive golf for one year.” The edict was part of the judge’s ruling on the divorcing couple’s child custody dispute.

Vechery, the girl’s father, currently serves as the girl’s golf coach. This seems to have been a problem for the judge, who also limited the girl’s ability to play golf with her father to “no more than one round of golf per week for five hours with putting and practice, whichever is greater.” The connection between the father and his daughter on the golf course may have been a problem for the mother, according to certain observers of the divorce case. The daughter was interviewed by a regional golf magazine in 2014 and said that her father gave her a set of plastic golf clubs when she was just three years old. Moreover, said the girl, spending time with her father and attending golf tournaments helped to shape her future career goals and made her “want to play better and maybe play professionally.”

It is worth noting that the father in the divorce case may have made a huge mistake by representing himself at the latest custody hearing. Although the divorcing dad previously had legal representation in the divorce proceedings, for some reason he showed up to this divorce hearing without an attorney by his side.

For more information, read the Deadspin.com article, “Virginia Judge Bans 10-Year-Old ‘Prodigy’ from Golf in Custody Battle.”

Do not make the mistake of representing yourself in a divorce proceeding or child custody case. If you are dealing with a family law matter, you need to speak with a qualified family law and divorce attorney. Jonathan D. Katz is an experienced family law and divorce lawyer who can help you to successfully navigate the divorce process in New York. Contact Mr. Katz now to schedule a free consultation.

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