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Access to kids after divorce?


Redbaron
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Evening all,

 

I'm guessing a lot of you lads are in the same club as me... that is, the "Married and Divorced" club.

 

What I want to know is, how long do you lads get to spend with your kids. I have a 2 year old son, and the divorce is about to go through, but we are at lockerheads about how much time I should get with the boy.

I am after 4 days/nights per fortnight, the ex - CCG (Crazy Chinese Girl) won't budge on 2 days per fortnight, stating I can see him whenever I like "by mutual agreement" which basically means if she doesn't agree, I don't see him.

Up to and including now, I get him 2 days per week no problems, which is part of my argument why I should continue to see him twice a week/4 x per fortnight. I am on a roster at work which gives me a lot of time off, so I'd like to make the most of it (something she's always agreed with me on but at the crucial moment when it comes to legalities, she's buckling).

 

Any advice? I understand the average single dad in Oz sees his kid(s) less than 4/fortnight, but what I'm interested in is guys who have fought to see the kids MORE than once per week or every second weekend, and how they've done.

 

Thanks in advance,

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Can't offer you any advice on your particular situation, as this is a nightmare if one party disagrees, but I'll offer my bit about access.

 

You can seek a legal solution and take it to the courts, but that's a long, expensive and perilous journey. In childcare provisions, there's a stipulation of what's in the best interests of the child. As long as you've been a reliable parent and don't have any nasties lurking in your past, such as a criminal record, drug abuse, alcoholism or records of violent incidents, all should be well. The reasons for your divorce can also count for or against you, depending upon who was the aggrieved party. Suffice to say, seeking a legal solution will mean the courts will go through your life and lifestyle with a fine comb, you will be totally examined, often excruciatingly so.

 

However, courts will want to make sure the child isn't unduly traumatised by the constant back and forwards between parents. Consistency of care being paramount. Often sole custody is awarded to the mother in such cases and she will call the shots. I'd seek legal advice regardless. Without a legally agreed access plan, then you will constantly be at the mothers whim.

 

I'd also keep records of all contact you have with the mother and what has been discussed. Very important if at a later date she starts to play games.

 

The courts always want the parents to come to a mutual agreement, if she is not playing ball, you will have no choice but to seek a legal solution.

 

If the mother has been unreliable and inconsistent as a parent, then you'll have a good case to proceed with. Otherwise you might find yourself in the same situation as a lot of men, who have little choice but to take what is given. It is a crap system at the moment. I worked on several such cases in the past. I helped to get sole custody for a few guys, something still quite a rarity.

 

Just wanted to wish you all the best in the meantime. You seem like a nice guy and I admire and respect such folks as you, who want the best for their child. There are so many parents who really don't give a damn. Good luck with this. If I can help, let me know.

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If the mother has been unreliable and inconsistent as a parent, then you'll have a good case to proceed with.

 

Thanks Faustian,

I have kept all records of communication SMS, email and a written record of phone calls. I do call her CCG for a reason, she has changed the plans for pick up/drop off 95/100 also said (in calls and email) I can keep the boy forever and she never wants to see him again. Next day she's apologetic and regrets what she says.

She's also threatened myself physically as well as my family which (through legal advise) prompted me to persue an intervention order against her this time last year. It was settled with a mutual agreement in court to stay out of each others' way other that pick up/drop of of our son.

 

We are pretty sure we will look good in court, she has admitted to introducing the boy to 4 (maybe more) "uncles", also her wild variation in not only the agreements for picking him up and dropping him off but full custody. I am tempted to go for full custody but fear this will drive her overseas, which in my mind would not be good for the boy. The more I look at it the more I think I should go for full custody.

 

The past should look good for me. I paid for a place for her to live (our previous home) for 12 months from separation, also left her with a fair amount of money in the bank (12 months wages worth), as well as all the furniture, assets etc apart from my car, clothes, golf clubs and a few books. On paper I have been quite generous.

 

It comes down to what's good for the child. He does love his mother, and I hope through all this he can maintain a relationship with her.

 

Thanks

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Sounds good from your point of view. She sounds highly inconsistent.

 

With the background details you've kindly given, I'd suggest you seek full custody.

 

If she goes overseas, then it is a loss to your son, but in other regards it might be a blessing.

 

Research has proven a child needs one reliable, consistent carer. You seem to fit the bill perfectly. You've gone above and beyond to be accommodating. Many wouldn't do as much as you have. If she goes overseas it isn't something you should feel guilty or bad about. Your son will grow up and understand.....trust me.

 

Always be honest with him, don't seek to be overly protective. He'll work it out and feel he is to blame if he doesn't understand where the responsibility lies. Children always feel at fault. It is unavoidable in the short term, but in the long term it can be fully addressed and the damage reversed. All damage can be reversed in young children, it is the teenagers who don't resolve issues.

 

Best of luck to you. If I can help with anything, let me know.

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Yeah, the more I think about it the more it makes sence. The GL is 100% with me as well, as is my family. They all love him dearly, he is a cute boy. The way I see it, even if I don't get full custody, I'll at least get more access than one day a week.

 

CCG has always threatened to take him overseas with her (something she admits she can't do without my consent), as she does have ludicrous employment opportunities in Asia. The good thing is the boy's passport has now expired (he has travelled a bit to see her family in China before), and there's zero chance (thanks to me) she can get him another one unless she forges my signature.

 

He's a pretty tough kid, I'm pretty sure he's been passed around to whoever can look after him at the time, CCG doesn't seem to be spending too much time looking after him. It's a bit sad at times...

 

See what happens

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It is my understanding she can not take the child out of the country without the fathers approval...

The other point ..to prove ..or try and prove she is an unfit mother is hard to prove in the eyes of this court ..she would have to be on drugs and some form of abuse to the child ...very hard this one ..

Having been through this court twice i know how they think ..and it is not the way of the man..

 

Get a good legal eagle in this field to get the best result for you ...maintenance is also going to raise its ugly head....imo

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Already paying maintenance, I have no qualms about that, it does cost $$$ to raise a child. Only issue I have about $$$ is the fact she keeps asking for extra even though what I paid in the first year was = to 3.5x what I was assessed as being obliged to pay by CSA (Child Support agency) here. I am now paying the CSA amount. Also she states she will never work while in this country, so if I get custody I will see no money from her. Mai pen rai I say.

 

No, she can't take the boy out of the country, I am considering getting another court order to stop her taking him out of this state as well.. cann me paranoid if you like but she is a bit of a nutter.

 

Yes, it will be hard to get full custody, but if she doesn't agree to me seeing him more than 1x per week I don't see a choice. Also her constant change of heart/mind about what is best for him disturbs me, and I'm sure the court will agree. She is definately not UNFIT, but she is definately UNSTABLE. She definately loves him, but I am not sure if she knows what's right for him, some conversations I have had with her suggest she doesn't.

 

Already have a good lawyer, he's been doing this for years and will do the best for the both of us (boy and me).

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"No, she can't take the boy out of the country, I am considering getting another court order to stop her taking him out of this state as well.. cann me paranoid if you like but she is a bit of a nutter."

 

I'd do this as a precaution in advance. As she is unstable you never know what she might do. But, as she does not/will not work (you say) once she takes off, if she did or does, your custody payments would be gone for her to access. How does she survive at the moment if she does not work? Are you paying alimony on top of the child care payments?

 

Be tough, and go for everything you can (full custody) to make yourself more able to negotiate from a position of strength.

 

Also, as a parent who had full custody of my kids after the split (they are fully grown and on their own for many years now - and doing very well I'll add), do you want and can you handle (timewise) being a single Dad? It isn't easy in my humble opinion. Family support is a big help.

 

Best of luck in this.

 

Cent

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