Shepherd’s Child Custody Case Complicated by Surrogate

Maryland residents who are familiar with the popular daytime talk show “The View” may be surprised to know that one of the show’s stars has separated from her husband. Sherri Shepherd has reportedly kept many of her relationship problems out of the spotlight. Even her close friends were surprised to learn that her husband is pursuing legal separation.

Shepherd’s divorce involves some unusual child custody issues because she and her husband were employing a surrogate to have a child. That baby has not yet been born. Insider sources say Shepherd had not revealed that she was expecting a child through a surrogate. She is known to carefully protect her personal privacy.

Reports show that the 47-year-old woman’s husband filed for legal separation on May 2. Courtroom documents revealed that the couple is expecting a child via surrogate. It appears that both parties are gearing up for a child custody fight, with Shepherd’s soon-to-be ex-husband, Lamar Sally, seeking full custody of the boy.

It appears that Shepherd’s ex is attempting to invalidate their prenuptial agreement. He is accusing Shepherd of fraud. News reports have not indicated the nature of the alleged fraudulent activities that occurred. Sally is also asking the court to grant the woman only “reasonable” visitation rights, though that term has not been formally defined.

Child custody issues involving surrogates still cause some stir in Maryland and other jurisdictions. Parents who are considering recruiting the help of a surrogate should pay close attention to the legal requirements in their state. This case has the potential to become particularly complicated because the couple’s child has not yet been born. Parents are urged to consult with a family attorney before using a surrogate in order to plan for contingencies such as this situation.

Source: People Magazine, “Sherri Shepherd Split and Baby News a ‘Shock’: Source” Alexis L. Loinaz and Charlotte Triggs, May. 10, 2014