'Dancing With the Stars' Pro Hit With Custody Case Following Divorce

Dancing With the Stars pro Gleb Savchenko's ex-wife, Elena Samodanova, is requesting full-time physical custody of their two daughters and additional child support. Savchenko and Samodanova first announced their split in November 2020 after 14 years of marriage amid allegations of the DWTS pro's infidelity, but the two exes have been focused on co-parenting with little public drama since then. 

In new court documents obtained by PEOPLE, Samodanova blames Savchenko's busy schedule as a professional dancer for what she claims is her ex's inability to carry out the original 50/50 custody split in a satisfactory way for daughters Olivia, 11, and Zlata, 4. "[Savchenko] travels extensively as a professional dancer and is not available to exercise the current custody/visitation schedule," Samodanova wrote in the court documents, asking that Savchenko be awarded custody alternating weekends as well as two weekday visits with the girls. 

"In this case, it is in the best interests of Minor Children to be in the care of their mother rather than a babysitter," she continued, claiming her ex's busy schedule has "made it impossible" for him to care for the kids – from helping them with homework and taking them to school on time to making sure they go to bed and taking them to extracurricular activities. 

Samodanova also claimed Olivia has struggled with school work under her dad's care and "on at least one occasion" was left home alone. In 2022, Savchenko has scheduled filming for DWTS, going on tour, conducting a dance camp in Mexico and serving as a judge on an upcoming season of the Swedish version of DWTS, which Samodanova claims necessitate the custody change.

"After I became aware of [Savchenko]'s work schedule and realized that he would not be able to take care of the children as we contemplated when we formulated our parenting plan, I proposed to [Savchenko] that the children live with me full-time during DWTS season and tour," she said in court documents. "I would make sure that our girls spend time with their father when he is available. My suggestion was based on our children's best interest because they need stability. Respondent insisted that our daughters remain with his nanny while he is unavailable and traveling for at least three months."

In addition to full-time custody of the kids, Samodanova requested Savchenko pay her child support "based on the current financial circumstances of both parties" as well as her attorney's fees in the sum of $10,000. Savchenko has yet to publicly respond to the filing.