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Author Topic: We Lost  (Read 4137 times)

KathyNY

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We Lost
« on: Sep 02, 2006, 07:31:02 AM »
Judge ruled that the kids shouldn't be separated and are already used to living w/ mom and "visiting" dad.  The other dad involved who started fighting but dropped his case wouldn't honestly admit that BM said she would stay here if she lost our case- and no one ever asked BM if she would stay, so we couldn't prove that the kids wouldn't be separated if the judge ruled in our favor.  

BM was planning on leaving the morning after the ruling, but the Law Guardian (who ended up still recommending the relocation be allowed but tried to get us more visitation than the judge gave us) talked to BM & her lawyer and got us an extra day.  The kids left at midnight on Thursday.

Per the court order we get:

1wk at Christmas (but we heard BM is to get them back for Christmas Eve - Christmas morning and if this is true we're fighting it)

1wk for spring break (these are the only school breaks they get)

8wks in the summer

Daily contact by any electronic means we choose

Anytime BM comes here she has to tell us & let us see them

Anytime we want to go there we only have to give BM 24hr notice and she has to make them accessible to us

That's all we get.  10 weeks out of 52.  And now we have to try and get Child Support dropped or reduced so we can afford the 12hr (each way) trip.  The Law Guardian told us he'd even ask the judge to write it into the court order that the kids be allowed to come here for our wedding next Sept. 1st (BM said she won't let them cuz school starts in August, even though it's a holiday wkend and they'd only be missing a day or two of Kgtn & 1st grade).

I'm absolutely miserable, my fiance is holding it in right now, but I know he's going to break when they've been gone awhile and the shock wears off.  


ocean

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RE: We Lost
« Reply #1 on: Sep 02, 2006, 10:08:53 AM »
I am so sorry!!! I really do not know what to say....
They kids do not have any long weekend that you can get them? (Thanksgiving? Long 3 day weekends?)
They did not say anything about BM paying for airfare or meeting you half way? Can they fly?
Will Christmas be spelled out with exact dates?

You can get the video camera for the computer and see them too!
Get the school name and get involved with their teachers. Maybe you can go to a few school things throughout the year? They are further away but you can keep a good relationship! I am sure the others on this board can help with ideas too!

KathyNY

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RE: We Lost
« Reply #2 on: Sep 02, 2006, 10:31:57 AM »
The Law Guardian's recommendation was that we also get visitation for Thanksgiving and any/all school breaks/holidays/vacations longer than the weekend but the judge said they're "reasonable parents and can agree on those days amongst themselves."  Yeah, right.  He doesn't know BM like we do.  

We're supposed to have the same order her other daughter's dad got, which has BM responsible for all transportation.  We've been told it's only a 2 hour flight, but right now the kids are only 4 & 5 (& 10) so I doubt she'd put them on a plane by themselves, and I KNOW she's not going to be willing to drive them here any more than she has to.  

We're devastated.  I can't even explain it.  Nothing is the same.  We don't even want to look at their bedrooms, we had to go shopping for my fiance's cousins/godson's bday present yesterday and we had to walk out of the store because seeing kid stuff hurt too much.  Everyone just keeps telling us how much it sucks and how they thought for sure we would win.  Yeah, us too.  

Genie

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I'm sorry......and some things to think about.....
« Reply #3 on: Sep 02, 2006, 04:07:38 PM »
after living in a state for 6 months, CS and then jurisdiction can usually be changed to that state.  So be prepared for her to possibly do this.  It makes it easier for her court wise and harder for you to file and wage a court battle from another state.

CS in IL is calculated at a % of the NCPs net income.  Since your Fiance has 2 children, it would be 28%.  BM, her husband and your income when married is not taken into consideration for CS.  It is straight %. They can/may want to see his taxes as well.  So I don't know how it is calculated in your state and how much he pays but it is something for you to think about.  If it to your advantage, you may be happy if she does move it to IL.

Hopefully the order will be written up with all you say should be in it. Make sure you go over it with a fine tooth comb and get any changes made before signed that need to be made.  Get a copy of the other Father's order so you know it is the same with transportation and other things as well.

I'm sorry this happened.  I wasn't too optimistic about you winning given other case history but you gave it a good shot and you know you tried.  Northern IL is more Father friendly and oriented than other parts of IL so you are in a good position there.  There is an Interference with Visitation law in IL as well.  Getting a county to enforce it is another thing but maybe you will get lucky if you need it.  Let me know and I will tell you how it works b/c we used it successfully in the past.

Keep your eyes out for good rates and you may be able to get out here more than you think.  There is so much to do in Chicago and the areas around it you goes would have a great time.  Not that far from WI either which has lots of places you can take the kids as well.  Let me know and I can let you know.

Keep your chin up.  Don't get too upset and don't let it destroy your relationship with Fiance. I have seen it happen.  And call them all the time.  They will miss you guys too.

KathyNY

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RE: I'm sorry......and some things to think about.....
« Reply #4 on: Sep 03, 2006, 06:36:45 AM »
One of the judge's stipulations (atleast that he told our lawyer, we haven't seen the written order yet) is that jurisdiction will remain in NY.  CS here is 25% for the 2 kids so that helps us if it stays here, since IL is higher %.  

The Law Guardian called us yesterday (on a Saturday no less!) to ask us how our last visit with the kids went (I think once he saw BM on the stand he realized what a witch she is, and he told us that this was his hardest case this calendar year because there's usually one clear party that shouldn't have custody for some reason, and that wasn't the case here).  He told us he had just finished his letter to the judge recommending we get as much visitation w/ the kids as the school releases them for, for school breaks, and that they come home to us next year from Thursday, August 29th until Monday, September 3rd for our wedding September 1st.  So he stuck to his word- now we just have to see if the judge puts it in the order and doesn't just expect BM to be "reasonable" enough to let them come home.

We're planning a trip there for Halloween (my fiance's favorite holiday).  That's halfway between now & when they'll be home for Christmas so we'll make a long weekend of it, and we'll just have to suck it up and do the trick-or-treating thing w/ BM.  But we'll have the weekend w/ them, and Monday & Tuesday during the day w/ SD while SS is in Kindergarten, and the evening w/ both of them.  It's a start.  


ocean

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RE: I'm sorry......and some things to think about.....
« Reply #5 on: Sep 03, 2006, 07:22:45 AM »
I am crossing my fingers that the schedule is written in stone for you so you won't have too much trouble.
Some schools do things for halloween. Maybe there is a parade or something you can attend (or a party in the classroom). Our school changed to "Fall Harvest" and we do things around fall (pumpkins). See what they are doing and maybe offer to get small pumpkins for the class?
What two airports do you need to fly in/out of? I will keep my eye on prices. I get southwest and spiritair e-mails with specials.
It will be different but it can work!

KathyNY

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flying v. driving
« Reply #6 on: Sep 03, 2006, 08:01:32 AM »
Thank you!  That's a great idea about the parade & going to the school to be involved w/ SS while we're there!  I hadn't even thought of that!  The Law Guardian also mentioned putting in the court order that we be listed on the school records as parents & emergency contacts so we can stay involved, so I don't think BM could keep us from attending a parade or from being at a class party if we wanted to be.  What a great idea, thank you so much!  I really hope now that they do something like that!  

We looked up flights last night and JetBlue doesn't fly out there, and we would fly out of (SYR) Syracuse, NY to (RFD) Rockford, Illinois but the cheapest flights we found were over $300/each.  We decided to drive the first time out, see how it goes.  BM said it cost here about $200 in gas when she went out the first time, so even that will save us $500.  If we leave on a Friday night here, we'll get there Saturday early afternoon, have the weekend w/ them, like I said, and we can leave after trick-or-treating and be back to work on Thursday, with only having taken off 3 days of work.  

We found a Howard Johnson hotel about 10 minutes from their house that has a restaurant in it and others nearby, an indoor pool & a game room, so we'll have things to do w/ them there if it's bad weather.

Genie

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2 other airports to look at are.....
« Reply #7 on: Sep 03, 2006, 10:54:06 AM »
O'hare and Midway.  O'hare being a very big one.  I didn't know Rockford had an airport.  Since you would be renting a car anyways, you could drive from either of these 2 to the hotel.  They aren't right next door but you may have lot more options with flights and prices.  I know Southwest flies out of Midway.  

Sounds like a good plan with Halloween.  I'm glad you aren't giving up.  You can always make it work.  Hopefully BM will continue to be cooperative and won't give you problems with visits.

MixedBag

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on the NY end
« Reply #8 on: Sep 04, 2006, 07:02:41 AM »
try Niagra Falls and Albany with Southwest.com

We've used Southwest and they are wonderful in price (when you can plan), and you can change the tickets on line a dozen times and not loose their value.

Southwest flies into Midway in Chicago and according to their map, it would be non-stop.

It's not unreasonable to expect kids to fly non-stop once they reach the minimum age required by the airlines.

AND Southwest does not charge an unaccompanied minor fee -- which is the babysitting fee.

6 kids here and they have all flown across the country as kids and the longest child has done it for 17 years.....it's safe.


msme

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Don't forget.........
« Reply #9 on: Sep 05, 2006, 08:04:56 AM »
to bring a certified copy of your custody order with you. Also, make contact with the school as soon as you can. Get in touch with the teacher & make yourself know as an interested parent. If the school has a website, you should be able to see what is going on & prepare for it.

You should also send the mother a letter of intent to exercise visitation & send it certified, return receipt requested, in enough time to get the receipt back before you leave. You should probably also get a proof of mailing receipt, just in case she doesn't pick up the certified letter. They hold it for 2 weeks before returning it.

My son's ex would never answer the door when the mailman came with certified's. Then she stood in court & swore that she didn't know anything about anything & that she was never notified. When his lawyer fanned out about 15 returned, unopened, certified letters, the judge told her that she had better not refuse any more.

She may try to block you from going to the school but with your order, a copy of the letter of intent, & her signed receipt for it, you should be able to tactfully persuade the school to let you participate.

Remember, the definition of tact is the ability to tell someone to go to hell & have them thank you and ask directions.

Good luck & God bless you all.

You never get a second chance to make a first impression!

 

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