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Topics - Kitty C.

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11
Father's Issues / Now Illinois gets on the bandwagon!
« on: Jun 13, 2012, 01:15:03 PM »
Fantastic article about new changes to visitation enforcement in Illinois.  What amazes me is that it passed both House and Senate unanimously!
 
http://www.fathersandfamilies.org/2012/06/13/illinois-leg-puts-teeth-into-visitation-law/
 
Now, the trick is to see if it gets used.....but if more people know about it, they can push to have it enforced.  And it looks like the Illinois Bar Assoc. couldn't come up with a valid reason as to why they thought it was 'unconstitutional'...once the point was made that child support sanctions are even stronger and those aren't considered unconstitutional, I guess they didn't have a leg to stand on.
 
I have a problem with only one word:
 
'(c)  After hearing all of the evidence, the court may order one or more of the following:'
 
I think it should be shall........

12
The Iowa Supreme Court got it RIGHT....this is a recent article from Fathers and Families:
Iowa Supreme Court: Duped Man May Sue for Paternity Fraud 
June 4th, 2012 by Robert Franklin, Esq.
 
The Supreme Court of Iowa has recognized a cause of action for paternity fraud by unmarried men.  Read about it here (Des Moines Register, 6/1/12).

Although the article isn’t clear, here’s what appears to have happened:  Joseph Dier and Cassandra Peters had a relationship in about 2008.  They were never married, but she had a son in 2009 and Dier paid her child support, believing the boy was his.  At some point, Dier decided the child would be better off with him and moved for custody.  Peters, suspecting the boy had not been fathered by Dier, asked the family court for genetic testing that proved Dier was not the father.

I suppose Peters was pleased with that outcome since it meant Dier was out of the custody picture.  What she didn’t count on was his lawsuit against her for paternity fraud claiming all monies he’d paid her in child support plus the cost of litigation.  The trial court dismissed his suit, ruling correctly that, under Iowa law, she’d done nothing wrong.

But the Supreme Court disagreed, establishing a new civil cause of action for damages, saying Dier can sue Peters.

I’ve dealt extensively with paternity fraud cases over the years and, put simply, those who claim that defrauded men should have no legal recourse, don’t have a single valid argument.  For example, there’s the claim that “public policy” requires that men be the ones to bear the consequences of women’s wrongdoing. 
 
"The 24-page opinion notes that “courts in other jurisdictions are divided as to whether to recognize paternity fraud claims. Courts disallowing such claims have relied heavily on considerations of public policy and child welfare” when refusing to carve tricked, married fathers out of their families."

Public policy?  Child welfare?  What public policy refuses to punish fraud?  What public policy allows a woman to choose which of two or more men she wants to act as father irrespective of his actual paternity? What public policy denies a child the vital information about his/her paternity with all the medical consequences that might entail?  How does that promote a child’s welfare?  What public policy is served by a mother’s tricking one man who’s not the father into believing that he is so he’ll invest love, care, emotion, time and money into being that parent?  What public policy allows a mother to trick the man who is the father into believing he’s not so he’ll have no opportunity to invest the love, care, emotion, time and money into being that father?  What public policy allows a mother to convince a child that one man’s his/her father when he isn’t and destroy that child’s world when her lie is revealed and the real father comes into the picture?  Public policy?  Child welfare?  No.  Paternity fraud serves neither and it’s high time a court of law admitted the fact.
 

Then there’s the argument that, however wrong her actions may have been, we can’t allow her to be sued because that would take money away from her and therefore the child.  The obvious answer to that is that we do that nowhere else in American jurisprudence, so why would we do it with paternity fraud?  If Mom runs a stop sign and hits a pedestrian, can she defend herself in court by saying “Hey, I’m a mother; if I have to pay a judgment, it’ll take money away from my child?”  What about if she sticks up a convenience store and shoots the clerk?  Can she keep out of jail because going there would adversely affect her child?  Is motherhood just a Get-Out-Of-All-Legal-Responsibility card?  Not yet.  The Iowa Supreme Court agreed.
 
“It is true that Dier’s success in the litigation could diminish the resources that Peters has available in the future to support (the child), but this would be true of any lawsuit against Peters,” justices ruled. “We have never afforded parents a general defense from tort liability on the ground they need all their money to raise their children."  (Bravo!)

So those who argue that all cases of paternity fraud by mothers should be given a pass, while two men and one child suffer the consequences, don’t have a leg to stand on.
 

Meanwhile, there’s nothing about paternity fraud that’s any different from other kinds of fraud that typically occur in a commercial setting.  It’s a lie on which the other person relies by spending money.  That’s what fraud is, and it should be treated the same way.  And, speaking of public policy, by ruling that there are consequences to paternity fraud, the Supreme Court voiced one of its own.
 
“Also, we need to consider the public policy implications of an opposite ruling,” the court said. “We recognize fraud as a cause of action partly to deter lying. One good reason to allow fraud claims to go forward in the area of paternity fraud is to avoid the situation that has allegedly arisen here.”

In other words, if the state lets lying go unpunished, it encourages lying; if it punishes lying, it deters it.  Maybe the next mother who feels the urge to defraud one man into paternity and another out of it will think twice.  And if she does, everyone will be better off.
 

As I’ve said many times before, only one person knows with whom a woman has had sex – her.  That means she and only she has the information about who may be the father if she becomes pregnant.  And if there’s more than one man who may be the father, she has a moral obligation to all possible fathers and her unborn child to tell each man that he may be the father.  From there, they can all figure out who the dad is, he can take up his parental rights and obligations, and everyone else can go on about their lives.  That’s a moral obligation that the vast majority of women have no problem complying with.
 

But there are always some for whom moral strictures aren’t enough, and for them we create legal ones.  That’s what the Supreme Court of Iowa just did, and it’s high time.
 
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
 
So if anyone is in the process or considering a paternity fraud case, this case should certainly help!  Makes me VERY proud to be an Iowan!

13
Father's Issues / Interesting forum on foster care coming up...
« on: Apr 07, 2012, 10:21:22 PM »
A local TV station is sponsoring a forum called 'Fractured Families', to discuss why the state of Iowa has such a high rate of children being removed from their homes and put into foster care.  They say that there will be 'local officials' (not exactly sure who) present to answer questions...what do you want to bet the main topic will be a push for more foster families?

They will skirt the real issues and have little regard for the children affected.  I really would like to go, but I have a class that day about 60 miles away, so I don't know if I will have time (or the gas money!) to get there.  But if I do, I will certainly report back!

14
General Issues / BIG moving weekend....
« on: Mar 23, 2012, 02:09:58 PM »
SS has decided to move in with us...this weekend.  He came over last night and talked to both DH and I at length about it.  The poor kid was crying....which made me want to go over to BM's house and just bang her head against a wall!  He's so worried about her being alone and him not being there to do things for her.  Never mind that he's been nothing but a go-fer and slave for her for the past 4-6 years.  But that's how badly she's brain-washed him over the years.
 
She's afraid of being alone, plain and simple.  She can't keep a man in her life...she might be able to reel them in, but once she starts seeing them, she treats them like crap or tries to change them and they bail.  But DH explained to SS over and over that BM is an adult and she can deal with her own life.  SS talked about fixing things for her and DH told him that he can certainly see her any time he wants and also can go over and help her with little things....but to NOT drop everything just to run for her every time she hollers.  DH also explained that any time SS goes over there, she will probably try to guilt him even more, so he needs to be prepared for that.
 
SS was also worried about his half-brother, that BM could do the same thing to him.  I told SS that it is very possible, but since there's 50/50 custody with him, HB's dad is really involved.  If Dad sees or senses something going on, he will certainly act on it....he's done it before.
 
SS askd DH if he should tell BM first and DH said no, not until the actual move.  Any forewarning and she will come out with the guilt guns blazing.  I reminded SS that he has no control over how others act or respond, so he should not take that into consideration.  Let's just say that if she goes a little nuts about this, I wouldn't be surprised.
 
DH also told SS that he believes some time with us will help him gain some perspective and help clear somethings up...that over time he will be able to look at the situation in a whole new way.  I truely believe that, too.  Considering SS is now an adult, I really don't think that what we all discussed last night was out of line at all.  But if anyone (especially those who know more about our situation) has any further ideas, I'm all ears!

15
Child Support Issues / IT'S OFFICIALLY OVER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
« on: Mar 09, 2012, 03:38:35 PM »
DH just got confirmation today....CS is OVER!!!!!!!   ;D   He called CSRU to verify and even asked them if CS was supposed to continue until SS graduated, so the lady looked up the order and told DH it states that CS ends 'when child turns 18, graduates, gets married, or joins the military....whichever comes first!'  His employer already has the order to cease and his paycheck next week will be almost $200 richer!
What's really funny is that BM's dad is the one who wrote up most of the wording in the custody and CS orders, so when (not if!) BM complains, DH will tell her she can thank her daddy for that, LOL!   ::)
DH made the call from home (he's off today and I'm at work), then told me he was dancing around the house and had the cat worried he was crazy, LOL!  DH said he's getting drunk tonight...think I'll join him!   ;D ;D ;D ;D ;D

16
Child Support Issues / Now it gets interesting....
« on: Mar 02, 2012, 03:33:03 PM »
DH received a notification from CSRU yesterday...I think it's the beginning of the end.  I'm not completely fluent in legalese, but the jist of it says the CS order is adjudged.  It is possible that the BM may try to tell them that SS is going to college in the fall, is staying with her and she wants the CS increased.  First, SS is not going to college or tech school in the fall.  Second, even tho he has NOT moved in with us since he turned 18 last month, at the very latest it will be when he graduates.  She's laying the guilt trip on him pretty thick, but SS has already told DH that if she requests an extention and increase in CS while he's still living with her, he said he would move out in a heartbeat.In the state of Iowa, CS can continue after HS graduation ONLY if the child goes to a post-secondary school and is still living with the primary parent.  BUT there are conditions:  the child must maintain a certain GPA (not sure what it is off the top of my head) AND the CS goes directly to the child.  Knowing BM like we do and if it transpired this way, we know that BM would demand room and board money in the amount of the CS that SS would get.  But that is entirely a hypothetical situation and I seriously doubt it would happen.So we're hoping that this notification is just to inform DH that the process to stop the CS has begun and that the last payment will be made in May.  I think this originated with CSRU because of SS turning 18 last month.  But it surprises me that they would take the initiative to start the process.....has anyone ever heard of that?

17
Child Support Issues / Just HAD to tell everyone....
« on: Jan 26, 2012, 04:17:45 PM »
The light at the end of the CS tunnel is growing brighter every day!  SS will be 18 next month and graduates in May!  He really wants to move out of BM's when he turns 18....can't say I blame him, as she shows him absolutely no respect and treats him like her personal go-fer and babysitter.  So DH wants to start the PW to get CS stopped.  Unfortunately, this has to be done through CSRU and it IS possible to file to suspend or end an order through them...except that both parties have to agree to it.   :(   Do you honestly think that BM would willingly say goodbye to $450 a month?  Hell no!  So that means filing the petition and going back to court, so I am bracing myself for the enormous frustration DH will be dealing with over the next few months.
 
Eventually, she has no choice....and we have plans for that money, LOL!   ;)

18
Father's Issues / Is BM finally seeing the light???
« on: Aug 21, 2011, 02:26:06 PM »
DH was just told about an incident that happened at our local mechanic's shop.  He goes there quite often, as the owner is a close friend, and both he and SS have been there a few times recently while working on SS's truck that DH bought for him.

BM also has her car serviced there and she apparently told the office manager recently that, when she found out that SS wanted to sell the truck, she lambasted him for it, telling him that he should be grateful for everything DH has done for him regarding that truck and apparently was praising DH to the skies for all the money and work DH has put into that truck.  The office manager told this to DH and also said that, in all the years she's dealt with BM, this is the FIRST time she's ever heard BM not only say something nice about DH but to praise him, too!  All she's every heard from BM is nothing but hatred for DH up until now!

When DH told me this today, my jaw practically dropped to the floor!  I tried to close it, but it kept dropping open!   

Maybe she finally realizes that, since it's SS's senior year now, not only will she need our help with senior expenses, but she probably has an inkling that SS wants to move out when he turns 18 in Feb. and wants to butter DH up so that he won't ask for CS from her!  At least I wouldn't put it past her...she's not the sharpest crayon in the box....   
 
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
 
On a more comical note......the current tropical storm in the Caribbean has the same name as DH's ex!  What is really funny is that both DH's and his ex's name are on the same year name list with the Nat. Hurricane Center!  When I told DH that, and that if a hurricane is severe enough, they will retire the name and pick a new one for that year list (it goes in 6 year cycles), DH said no way....that ex's named storm will never be strong enough, because she wants to do just enough damage to be a nuisance and come back every 6 years, LOL!

19
Father's Issues / Another advice columnist gets it wrong...again!
« on: Jul 18, 2011, 10:09:43 AM »
Just saw this on the 'Ask Amy' column:
 
Dear Amy: I have a heart-wrenching decision to make about giving the love of my life a second chance.

He will not be honest with his two children about our relationship. His 16-year-old daughter and son (age 20) have told him that if he marries me, they will cut him out of their lives and never speak to him again. His ex-wife is fueling this and has so far been successful in making his children think they have the right to make this ultimatum.

This is emotional extortion. He is currently serving in Iraq. He and I have been living together stateside. His children and his ex-wife find this unacceptable.

During a visit home recently he asked his son to help him move some personal belongings out of our apartment to put them in storage. This was a sham gesture to make the son think we are not together.

I was so upset I ended the relationship. I am humiliated and devastated that my significant other cannot be honest. I think he is spineless and unable to establish healthy boundaries.

We spoke by phone today, and he said, "I will be honest with my children about us," but I've heard this for more than two years, and I don't have any reason to believe him now.

Should I give him a second chance?

— Devastated

Dear Devastated: All the most important people in your guy's life are pressuring him, and he is reacting by scurrying for cover.

Because he has essentially moved out of your home, your "second chance" could be to dial back your relationship and calmly continue to assert your choice to live authentically.

A good parent models appropriate and mature behavior. Allowing his kids to jerk him around isn't good for him — but it is really not good for the kids. His ex is training them in the art of emotional extortion, but he is participating by permitting it.

When he comes home, if you two want to be together permanently, you can decide to get married (living together without marriage creates doubt about your relationship).

If he is honest, patient, happy and in charge of his own life, his kids should come around.
 
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
 
It amazes me to believe that Amy honestly thinks that the father 'is participating by permitting it'.  He's afraid of losing his kids, for God's sake!  And if she honestly thinks that if he takes charge of his life that they will automatically come around, she's in for a big surprise.  I've witnessed severe PAS with a personal friend, who's ex was so vindictive, she poisoned his DD so bad that not only did she refuse to allow him to walk her down the aisle when she got married (she didn't want some blind guy escorting her), she wouldn't even send him an invitation.  Now she's had a son and refuses to allow him to have ANY information about the child, let alone see him.  Children CAN be poisoned for life from PAS..........something Amy fails to realize.......

20
Father's Issues / Had to set another advice columnist straight....
« on: Jun 10, 2011, 06:59:05 AM »
This time it was today's column in 'Dear Abby'.
 
DEAR ABBY: My daughter, "Alana," has a 7-year-old son my husband and I have helped to raise while she got her life together and pursued her lucrative career. "Tristan" excels in school and is a great little man. The problem is, every time Alana gets a new boyfriend, she rushes to make the boyfriend Tristan's "daddy."
 
The men my daughter chooses are crude, rude and, without fail, feel a need to "straighten out" Tristan. My grandson does not need straightening out because he is polite, engaging and a good soul. The newest guy in Alana's life, "Jeff," told me point blank that if Alana doesn't stop babying her son, Tristan will grow up to be a girl! This man is homophobic, sexist, racist and controlling.

Alana claims she's "in love" and fails to see the potential harm this guy could inflict on Tristan. We do not employ corporal punishment, but Jeff has already said (several times) he would "beat his butt"! What should we do? -- FEARFUL NANA IN GEORGIA
 
DEAR NANA: Where is your daughter meeting these people? It appears her taste in men is atrocious, and she has serious self-esteem issues. You and your husband need to get across to her how harmful it is for her to repeatedly introduce men to her son as "daddies." Parents should wait until they know their prospective mates well enough to be assured they won't injure the child physically or psychologically.
 
If Alana insists on marrying Jeff, offer to take Tristan to live with you. If that's not acceptable, the next time Jeff says he'll "beat Tristan's butt" respond point blank that if he lays a hand on your grandson, you'll report him to Child Protective Services.
You could also point out to your daughter that now that she has her life together and a "lucrative career," the last thing she would need is a scandal because she tolerated such a thing happening to her son. And while you're at it, make it plain that trying to "toughen up" a 7-year-old the way this man is suggesting would not only be counterproductive, it could damage him in ways she can't imagine.

 
Here's my response:
 
Abby,
I strongly disagree with the advice you gave to 'Fearful Nana', who's daughter was choosing questionable partners and insisting her son view them as dad.
 
You said 'You and your husband need to get across to her how harmful it is for her to repeatedly introduce men to her son as "daddies." Parents should wait until they know their prospective mates well enough to be assured they won't injure the child physically or psychologically.'
 
Parents should wait?  Should wait for what?  Wait to get to know the guy before insisting the child view him as 'Dad'?  The thing is, the child should NEVER imply or call anyone who isn't legally a parent (either by birth or adoption) Dad or Mom.  I don't know where the father is in this case, but unless the guy is a convict or proven to be a danger to the child, the child NEEDS to have a relationship with his biological father.
 
This child could suffer from severe psychological damage by being forced to view so many men 'Dad'.  The meaning of the word could change for him and how he might see himself when he is old enough to be a father himself.  The mother needs to cease and desist the practice NOW, before she does further damage.
 
But as for the lastest 'father replacement' choice of the mother, you're advice was spot on.  Any suspicion of abuse needs to be reported immediately, especially if there is bruising or injury of any kind.  If the grandparents see the child often, they need to check the child frequently and report anything abusive they might find.
 
I highly recommend the website of SPARC (Separated Parents Access and Resource Center) at www.deltabravo.net.  It will be an eye-opener for you in regards to non-custodial parents and especially how the improper actions of separated parents can severely impact a child's life.
 
Bio- AND Step-Mom
 

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