he complicated child custody dispute between Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt could end up in the hands of the California Supreme Court. Pitt’s attorneys on Tuesday asked the state’s superior court to reinstate the retired judge who was hired to arbitrate the disagreement between Pitt and Jolie over custody of their six children.
Last month, a California appeals court ruled that John W. Ouderkirk should be disqualified from the case. He argued that the retired judge worked for Pitt’s attorneys on other matters without fully disclosing it to Jolie’s attorneys. The decision effectively erased Ouderkirk’s arbitration measure in the case.
In the new motion, Pitt’s attorneys argue that the decision not only overturns their own four-year dispute, but could complicate custody decisions in other cases. “All of this is likely to create uncertainty for the parties, who may see major rulings such as custody agreements undone on weak grounds for disqualification, even after years of litigation,” the court record said.
“The lower court ruling is bad for the children and bad for California’s overburdened court system,” Pitt’s attorney, Theodore J. Boutrous, Jr., told CNN in a statement.
A lawyer for Jolie referred to CNN to the actor’s publicists Tuesday night, who did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
It was unclear Tuesday when the California Supreme Court would make a decision on whether or not to accept the appeal request.