discipline

Is It Illegal to Spank Your Stepchild?

stuffed animal tigerSince many divorcing people are parents, this new case about physical discipline of children might be of interest. Spanking was more common with previous generations, the practice seems to be dropping off. Under Massachusetts law, a parent or guardian is not subject to criminal prosecution for the use of force against a minor child in his/her care provided the use of force…

  1. Is reasonable.
  2. Is related to the purpose of safeguarding or promoting the welfare of the minor (which can include punishment of misconduct).
  3. Does not cause or create the risk of substantial physical harm or severe mental distress.

Basically, you can physically discipline your children so long as you don’t actually hurt them. This is called “parental privilege.” Recently, our Supreme Judicial Court ruled on whether this privilege should extend to stepparents.… Keep reading

Parental Right to Spank Upheld

Looks like we aren't getting ice cream today...
Looks like we aren’t getting ice cream today…

Hi there,

As a parent and grandparent I have long felt it was a necessary right of parents to swat their kids on the behind occasionally. Swift justice often makes the most impact.

I was somewhat astonished to open Lawyers Weekly today and discover that the Supreme Judicial Court agreed with me.

However, if you are in the midst of a contested parenting case, I recommend that you don’t spank your children, as it will be held against you. An effective alternative could be restricting the use of their iPhone or Nintendo, which is often a powerful consequence for kids!

Best,
Nancy

 … Keep reading