Michael Stutman features in People

Posted on 15 January 2016

Madonna and Guy Ritchie are still "Hung Up" in court in a transatlantic custody squabble over 15-year-old son Rocco.

While the teen was traveling with his mom on her Rebel Heart tour for three months in the fall, a Ritchie source told PEOPLE he got bored and decided to live with his dad in the U.K. in an act of rebellion. When he refused to return to the U.S. for the holidays, Madonna, 57, appeared in a New York City courtroom on Dec. 23, where a judge reportedly ordered that Rocco return to N.Y.C. to sort out his living situation.

Despite the judge's order, sources have alleged Rocco hasn't returned home yet, that he has missed school since moving in with his dad in December, and that the spat stems from a power struggle between Madonna and Ritchie, 47.

The exes are due in court for a second hearing in New York on Feb. 3, and PEOPLE spoke to a divorce and family law expert who is not involved in their case to weigh in on what's next.

Michael Stutman – head of the family group at Mischon de Reya New York – tells PEOPLE. "Sometimes you're creating more problems than you solve by trying to force a teenager to do what they don't want to.

"And if the two parents are not united with respect to the child, the child will exploit those differences and get what he wants."

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