Writer of divorce bill says it would prevent domestic violence

Senate Bill No. 787

A bill in Massachusetts would require divorcing couples to get a judge's permission to have sex with other people, in their own homes.

This bill is short and sweet.

"In divorce, separation, or 209A proceedings involving children and a marital home, the party remaining in the home shall not conduct a dating or sexual relationship within the home until a divorce is final," said Robert LeClair, a resident of Wrentham.

But it's causing quite a stir.

"Because they think it's all about sex," LeClair said.

LeClair said he thinks the law would prevent domestic violence. He said seeing your estranged spouse dating someone or having sex with another person in your old family home can lead to violence.

"This is not to legislate morality," he said.

However, the lawmaker associated with the bill doesn't support it.

LeClair wrote the bill, but he couldn't present it because he's not a legislator. The bill says it was presented by Republican state Sen. Richard Ross "by request."

"By request" is important because it means the senator can present it without backing it.

"I do not support that particular bill," Ross said. "Back when we wrote our constitution back in the 1780s Massachusetts provided a provision where by citizens could have the right to petition."

Although Ross is getting a lot of flak for presenting the bill, he said it was his duty to follow Massachusetts law and protect taxpayers' right to participate in the legislative process.

This bill was filed in January 2013. Ross said he doesn't expect it to go anywhere.