Four months after filing for divorce, Billy Porter and his ex-husband Adam Smith are fighting over custody of their cockapoo, Lola.
via: The Messenger
After discussing financial matters in a Manhattan court hearing on Nov. 15, Porter's attorney, Margaret Brady, accused Smith of keeping the actor away from their dog. Porter alleged his estranged husband "took me off as being the father," per Allegedly.
In court documents seen by The Messenger, Brady told Judge Douglas Hoffman — who proudly noted that he once owned a cockapoo — that Smith "has refused to give plaintiff access to the dog since the middle of this summer. We would like an access schedule."
Smith's attorney, Dana Stutman, intervened and said because Porter gave Smith the pooch as a birthday gift, she did not belong to both Porter and Smith. Brady disagreed, to which Stutman responded, "I understand that it doesn't make it separate property. However, for seven months, this dog, except for one small week...has been with my client and not one request has come asking for time with him."
Porter's lawyer quipped, "It was refused from the get-go. I had a conversation with my client and he would still like the opportunity to spend time with his dog."
Things took a turn after Judge Hoffman asked when the Pose star, who introduced Lola to the world via Instagram in 2021, wants to be reunited with the pooch.
"Well, as long as he can promise that he's not doing drugs, that he's not having parties," said Smith's lawyer.
Porter responded with, "You will not scandalize my name like that."
Still, Stutman doubled down and told the judge, "These are based on fact, your honor, and I'm not trying to do anything that would harm anyone's reputation here. But they brought up the dog, and I'm telling you what the concerns have been from the get-go."
Brady asked for "an agreement" that both Porter and Smith would refrain from drug and alcohol use when they have the dog with them, "or the neutral party will exchange the dog." Brady noted that Porter wanted to see Lola when he returns to the US from London at the end of the month.
Stutman agreed, adding, "If you want to have a trial on whether or not there's fitness for taking care of a dog, we'll do that. But I don't think that that's really what Mr. Porter wants."
Ultimately, both parties agreed to land on a visitation schedule.
Porter and Smith announced their divorce in July after four years of marriage.
A rep for the actor told People in a statement at the time: "I can confirm that Billy Porter and his husband Adam Smith have made the sad decision to end their marriage after six years. The decision was an amicable and mutual one and was made after much consideration. They continue to love and support each other as they embark on this next chapter."
Chiiiile, this is about to get messyyyyyy!