S.P.A.R.C.

Separated Parenting Access & Resource Center
crazy gamesriddles and jokesfunny picturesdeath psychic!mad triviafunny & odd!pregnancy testshape testwin custodyrecipes

Author Topic: What to expect..  (Read 2001 times)

kachirired

  • New Arrival
  • *
  • Posts: 6
  • Karma: 0
    • View Profile
What to expect..
« on: Jun 13, 2006, 09:34:41 AM »
I am looking for information on what we should bring to court in VA and what we should expect from our first meeting with the judge.   We will be discussing child support, custody, visitation etc.
 
My husbands was not married to his son's mother.  His son is 9 years old.  We feel his son would be better off with us for a few main reasons, A) The schools in our area are much better according to SOL results
B) His son is 9 and doesn't have his own room or his own bed.  He either sleeps with his mother or her brother.
C) The mother doesn't seem to have her sons best interest in mind.  She tells her son that his father doesn't love him and doesn't want to see him which is far from the truth.

My husband pays support every month, calls his son every week but often calls aren't returned, she hangs up or if she doesn't get what she wants she hangs up.
 
Are there any father support groups in the Hampton Roads, VA area?

What should we bring to court and what questions should we be prepared for?
 
Any assistance is appreciated.
 
Thank you


notnew

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 451
  • Karma: -1
    • View Profile
RE: What to expect..
« Reply #1 on: Jun 13, 2006, 10:29:56 AM »
First off, I'll suggest you post on Socrateaser's board. He has been a tremendous help to many of us here and can offer you solid information.

There are many things you don't mention in your posting that are pertinent.

What kind of custody is currently in place?

What kind of visitation is currently in place?

How far away do you live from the child?

What kind of arrangement are you looking to get?

What conditions are occuring with the mother that make you believe it is not in the child's best interest to continue living in his normal environment?

How has the father exercised visitation over the years?

Is the phone contact he is being denied part of a court order?

Do you have an attorney? If so, I would think that as your representative, he/she should at least give you an idea of what the score is ahead of time.

I am not a lawyer. I am a person who has gone through custody issues with a bitter ex for many years. I can only relay what my personal experience has taught me. Please provide a little more information and we can let you know what our experiences have been.





kachirired

  • New Arrival
  • *
  • Posts: 6
  • Karma: 0
    • View Profile
RE: What to expect..
« Reply #2 on: Jun 13, 2006, 11:09:52 AM »
Thank you I will put a post on the Socrateaser's board.

I will answer your questions below;

What kind of custody is currently in place?  
  The mother has primary custody and there has never been a court order other than child support years ago which she went right back to court and stopped that because things were going fine.

What kind of visitation is currently in place?  
  Visitation is dependent on the mothers mood.  We were suppose to have visitation over Memorial Day weekend and she got mad, hung up and told their son that my husband didn’t want to see their child so we didn’t get to see him.

How far away do you live from the child?
  We live 2-3 hours away.

What kind of arrangement are you looking to get?
  We will be seeking at least joint custody but preferably full custody.

What conditions are occuring with the mother that make you believe it is not in the child's best interest to continue living in his normal environment?
A) The mother tells her son that my husband doesn’t love him, doesn’t want to see him, doesn’t want to be his dad etc.  
B)  His son doesn’t have his own room or his own bed.  He is 9 and sleeps with his mother or her brother.
C)  We question his living conditions.  He has told my mother in law he used to sleep on the floor where a dog urinated on him or they left the urine on the floor where he slept and we have taken pictures of the house with bags of garbage just laying in the yard.
D)  She is only working part time at a movie rental company and isn’t looking to move out of her parents house or improve their sons quality of life.

How has the father exercised visitation over the years?
  For over 3 years his ex-girlfriend and his son lived with either him or his parents so he saw him on a daily basis for 3-6 months and over those 3 years saw him when he visited which was probably every few months.  

Is the phone contact he is being denied part of a court order?
  No- there is no court order yet although she has agreed via email to several things including taxes, visitation, phone calls etc. but has not been abiding by the agreement.

Do you have an attorney? If so, I would think that as your representative, he/she should at least give you an idea of what the score is ahead of time.
  We do not have an attorney at this point.

Thank you

VeronicaGia

  • Jr. Member
  • **
  • Posts: 156
  • Karma: 0
    • View Profile
RE: What to expect..
« Reply #3 on: Jun 13, 2006, 12:06:35 PM »
Before I comment, there is one thing I need to say.  Your husband is the child's parent, not you. I'm sure you love the child, but legally you are a stranger to the child.  If you go to court, a judge may not like this "we" stuff, just an FYI...

>What kind of custody is currently in place?  
>  The mother has primary custody and there has never been a
>court order other than child support years ago which she went
>right back to court and stopped that because things were going
>fine.
>
***If there is no court order for custody, then there needs to be one.

>What kind of visitation is currently in place?  
>  Visitation is dependent on the mothers mood.  We were
>suppose to have visitation over Memorial Day weekend and she
>got mad, hung up and told their son that my husband didn’t
>want to see their child so we didn’t get to see him.

***If there is no court order for visitation, mom doesn't have to let dad see the child. Was there ever court ordered DNA done or has dad been established by the court to be the legal father?
>
>How far away do you live from the child?
>  We live 2-3 hours away.
>
>What kind of arrangement are you looking to get?
>  We will be seeking at least joint custody but preferably
>full custody.

***Once again, there is no "we."  Your husband is hoping to get joint legal and physical custody or possibly sole legal and physical custody.
>
>What conditions are occuring with the mother that make you
>believe it is not in the child's best interest to continue
>living in his normal environment?
>A) The mother tells her son that my husband doesn’t love him,
>doesn’t want to see him, doesn’t want to be his dad etc.  

***How can dad prove this?

>B)  His son doesn’t have his own room or his own bed.  He is 9
>and sleeps with his mother or her brother.

***How can dad prove this?


>C)  We question his living conditions.  He has told my mother
>in law he used to sleep on the floor where a dog urinated on
>him or they left the urine on the floor where he slept and we
>have taken pictures of the house with bags of garbage just
>laying in the yard.

***How can dad prove this?

>D)  She is only working part time at a movie rental company
>and isn’t looking to move out of her parents house or improve
>their sons quality of life.

***Probably not an issue.
>
>How has the father exercised visitation over the years?
>  For over 3 years his ex-girlfriend and his son lived with
>either him or his parents so he saw him on a daily basis for
>3-6 months and over those 3 years saw him when he visited
>which was probably every few months.  
>
>Is the phone contact he is being denied part of a court
>order?
>  No- there is no court order yet although she has agreed via
>email to several things including taxes, visitation, phone
>calls etc. but has not been abiding by the agreement.

***If it is not a court ordered agreement, she is under no obligation to abide by it.  No verbal or notarized agreement will withstand.
>
>Do you have an attorney? If so, I would think that as your
>representative, he/she should at least give you an idea of
>what the score is ahead of time.
>  We do not have an attorney at this point.
>

***your husband may want to at least consult with a local attorney.
>Thank you
>

VeronicaGia

  • Jr. Member
  • **
  • Posts: 156
  • Karma: 0
    • View Profile
RE: What to expect..
« Reply #4 on: Jun 13, 2006, 12:07:13 PM »
Before I comment, there is one thing I need to say.  Your husband is the child's parent, not you. I'm sure you love the child, but legally you are a stranger to the child.  If you go to court, a judge may not like this "we" stuff, just an FYI...

>What kind of custody is currently in place?  
>  The mother has primary custody and there has never been a
>court order other than child support years ago which she went
>right back to court and stopped that because things were going
>fine.
>
***If there is no court order for custody, then there needs to be one.

>What kind of visitation is currently in place?  
>  Visitation is dependent on the mothers mood.  We were
>suppose to have visitation over Memorial Day weekend and she
>got mad, hung up and told their son that my husband didn’t
>want to see their child so we didn’t get to see him.

***If there is no court order for visitation, mom doesn't have to let dad see the child. Was there ever court ordered DNA done or has dad been established by the court to be the legal father?
>
>How far away do you live from the child?
>  We live 2-3 hours away.
>
>What kind of arrangement are you looking to get?
>  We will be seeking at least joint custody but preferably
>full custody.

***Once again, there is no "we."  Your husband is hoping to get joint legal and physical custody or possibly sole legal and physical custody.
>
>What conditions are occuring with the mother that make you
>believe it is not in the child's best interest to continue
>living in his normal environment?
>A) The mother tells her son that my husband doesn’t love him,
>doesn’t want to see him, doesn’t want to be his dad etc.  

***How can dad prove this?

>B)  His son doesn’t have his own room or his own bed.  He is 9
>and sleeps with his mother or her brother.

***How can dad prove this?


>C)  We question his living conditions.  He has told my mother
>in law he used to sleep on the floor where a dog urinated on
>him or they left the urine on the floor where he slept and we
>have taken pictures of the house with bags of garbage just
>laying in the yard.

***How can dad prove this?

>D)  She is only working part time at a movie rental company
>and isn’t looking to move out of her parents house or improve
>their sons quality of life.

***Probably not an issue.
>
>How has the father exercised visitation over the years?
>  For over 3 years his ex-girlfriend and his son lived with
>either him or his parents so he saw him on a daily basis for
>3-6 months and over those 3 years saw him when he visited
>which was probably every few months.  
>
>Is the phone contact he is being denied part of a court
>order?
>  No- there is no court order yet although she has agreed via
>email to several things including taxes, visitation, phone
>calls etc. but has not been abiding by the agreement.

***If it is not a court ordered agreement, she is under no obligation to abide by it.  No verbal or notarized agreement will withstand.
>
>Do you have an attorney? If so, I would think that as your
>representative, he/she should at least give you an idea of
>what the score is ahead of time.
>  We do not have an attorney at this point.
>

***your husband may want to at least consult with a local attorney.
>Thank you
>


notnew

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 451
  • Karma: -1
    • View Profile
RE: What to expect..
« Reply #5 on: Jun 13, 2006, 12:20:11 PM »
You may want to think carefully about getting an attorney.

Your situation is sticky. You say the mother has primary custody, but there is no court order in place. If there is no court order in place, then by the way I understand things, there is no custody in place that the court recognizes.

You say a child support action was in place and she stopped it because they came to an agreement. I am not sure about that either. I don't know if a child support action can be dropped in that way.

If the visitation is by mutual agreement, then the court probably won't recognize this as a binding agreement so she most likely hasn't violated anything.

It sounds to me like you are looking for Joint Legal with physical placement being with your BF.

A lot depends on if they will give physical placement to your BF.  Things like, home where you live, stability of your relationship, all kinds of other factors go into the decision making process.

If your BF is planning on representing himself, (Pro Se), he needs to do a lot of research to make sure he is proceeding properly. How did you get a hearing scheduled?

The things the mom is saying about dad are not nice and by the court's standard, are not supposed to be happening. But here in the real world, we know that the judge is not a fly on the wall and these things happen all the time. The best way to approach this with the child is to be consistent in your time with him, attitude with him, and support of him. Don't bash the other side just because of what she is saying. Hopefully, the child will see the truth of things for himself in time.

Every 3 months is not enough time for your BF to spend with his son. If I were you two, I'd try to get the following established:

1. Get custody going with request for Joint Custody with Physical placement with BF - if mom doesn't agree, the court will most likely order a custody evaluation and trial.

2. In the interim, get a temporary visitation order in place that guarantees BF gets son every other weekend, and phone contact at least 2 evenings per week between specific time frames, with any other visitation stipuluations you are looking for.  

3. Ask for temp joint custody order to be put in place pending outcome of final decision.

Like I said before, this is my personal opinion. Soc can give you a more solid idea of where to go from here and if you are iffy about going it alone, get an attorney if you can afford it. If you do go with an attorney, interview more than one and make your decision carefully. They may be getting paid by you, but many of them don't do very good at representing Dad's.

Good luck with everything.



kachirired

  • New Arrival
  • *
  • Posts: 6
  • Karma: 0
    • View Profile
RE: What to expect..
« Reply #6 on: Jun 13, 2006, 01:32:01 PM »
I definitely understand and will not be speaking in court unless the judge asks me a question.  I do try to stay out of their conversations etc. I am doing to postings just as leg work for my husband because he works nights.

We will be going to court at the end of this month to get a court ordered agreement and establish, the amount of child support, taxes, visitation, custody, communication etc.

After almost 9 years the mother got mad at my husband and blurted out that he isn’t their sons father and later told her who the other potential father could be. We just got the paternity tests back and he is definitely my husband’s child. (For the child’s sake we are pleased with the results.)

 They started in mediation which didn’t last but 5 minutes because my husband asked for a paternity test but the mediator told both of them since there is no court order my husband can see the child any time.

After mediation we went to see his son and her mother came to the door, wouldn’t let my husband see his son and told him that his son was inside crying because you said you didn’t want to be his father anymore.  First, this isn’t true at all, second, nothing from mediation was suppose to be repeated especially to the child and I heard the entire conversation from the car.  We can prove all of it if the judge asks the child.  Will his son be in the court room?  Will the judge ask their son any questions?

Is it possible for my husband to get a court ordered attorney?

Thank you!

kachirired

  • New Arrival
  • *
  • Posts: 6
  • Karma: 0
    • View Profile
RE: What to expect..
« Reply #7 on: Jun 13, 2006, 01:40:29 PM »
My husband got the hearing after he went to mediation and asked for a paternity test.

We have met with one attorney so far.  I am sure you are all to aware they are soooooo expensive.  We finally were able to sell my husbands house so will be better able to hire an attorney next month.  Is it possible to ask the jduge for a continuation to get more time to hire an attorney?  

Thank you!

Sherry1

  • Private Reserve
  • SuperHero
  • ***
  • Posts: 5245
  • Karma: 52
    • View Profile
Not to burst your bubble........ but the
« Reply #8 on: Jun 14, 2006, 11:14:24 AM »
things you have posted are probably not cause for a judge to award your husband custody.  The things you posted are things you would just do differently.  Unless there is documented proof that the child has been physically abused or the mother is on drugs, it would probably be far fetched that a judge would remove a child and place him in a home 2 hours away from his mothers.

The first thing you need to do is get a court order in place with your husband having joint legal custody and standardized visitation.

 

Copyright © SPARC - A Parenting Advocacy Group
Use of this website does not constitute a client/attorney relationship and this site does not provide legal advice.
If you need legal assistance for divorce, child custody, or child support issues, seek advice from a divorce lawyer.