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Author Topic: Please help my brother!!  (Read 1477 times)


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Please help my brother!!
« on: Dec 21, 2007, 04:06:17 PM »
My brother (residing in the state of Florida) and his ex had a baby girl on Nov. 20 and broke off the relationship shortly thereafter. Now my brother lives at home with my mother and his ex lives with her parents as well. She doesn't work, so her parents and my brother are the ones supporting the child. Her parents hate my brother and our family and they will stop at nothing to keep him out of his daughter's life. They even went so far as to convince their daughter (the ex) to go down to the clerk's office and change the baby's last name on the birth certificate and list the father as unknown. One night my brother had the baby for a sleepover at his house and she demanded my brother bring the baby back at 5:30 am the next morning. When my brother tried to explain to her that her request was ridiculous and unreasonable, she got angry and called the cops. She told the cops my brother was holding her baby against her will. The cops did not remove the baby from my brother's home. After that, he filed all the necessary legal papers for 50/50 custody and that made her and her parents really mad. They got a lawyer of their own and are fighting for 100% custody with supervised visitations for my brother. They are claiming he was verbally abusive to the ex and that he hit her in the past (which is completely untrue). Now she is withholding the baby from him - won't even let him see her at all. She told him if he wants to see "HER baby" he must contact her lawyer. She cut off her phone so he  has no  way of contacting her directly except to call her parents house and of course they rarely put her on the phone. She is also claiming that our family is nasty to her and makes her feel uncomfortable, so she doesn't want us around the baby. The truth is we have never been anything but respectful to this girl, despite all the terrible things she has done to my brother and our family. My brother has given her 3 or 4 checks for child support thus far and she has yet to cash the checks. She doesn't change or feed the baby - her mother and her sister and the primary caretakers right now. We are also concerned because her brother is a drug dealer living in the same household and her father has a history of abuse (though that may be hard to prove since I'm sure she'll never admit she said that). All my brother wants is to be a father to his daughter. Unfortunately, because this girl and her family are so angry (at the fact that my brother would not "do the right thing" by marrying her) they are pushing him away from his daughter.
I am so worried for my brother - I know how the system works and it always seems to be in favor of the mother (my father went through a horrible, decade-long custody battle with my own mother and she won time and time again despite being a neglectful mother and my father being a good and loving father). This is really killing my family. We need help!


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RE: Please help my brother!!
« Reply #1 on: Dec 21, 2007, 05:54:16 PM »
DH had his court case in Escambia County. He had a great judge and was able to get very reasonabe judgements. If your brother lives in Escambia or the surrounding counties, let me know and I will give you a great lawyers name.

It sounds like he already hired an attorney, though. I hope that is the case. I also hope that attorney has Family law expertise and , if possible Father's right's experience.

Let me tell you this, if your family has no history of abuse, neglect, drug charges etc... there is very very little chance a judge will allow BM to keep the child from seeing you if DH gets joint legal.

What is your brother trying for, primary physical custody or visitation?

If BM's brother has a criminal record and lives in the house, I would get his record from the court house AND evidence that he lives there (if he was just convicted, it shoud say on the court documents his address) and let his attorney know that this is going on . This could get him closer to getting custody. The fact that BM doesn't work is actually a mark FOR her. She will be better able to care for the child on a daily basis because of that. It is unfair, but it is the way a lot of courts think. Submitting that she doesn't ACTUALLY care for the child will not get you anywhere. You may deep down know that, but there is no way you can prove it and the court will likely think your brother is being petty by bringing it up.

If her is going for primary physical placement, make sure he has a plan of how the baby would be cared for while he is at work. This might offset the issue of mom being there 24/7.

About the child support checks, has he been ordered to pay child support? If not, I would have him cancel any checks over 30 days old and send BM a certified letter explaining that the checks were outstanding for too long and that he will be placing the money in a savings account to be paid if child support is ordered.  Then have him do that. The problem is, courts often times see payments like that as gifts to the other parent because no order was put in place. Then people like your brother are charged with back-support eventhough they already paid. It is completely unfair but it happens. If he has a seperate account for potential child support payments and can show the court he was paying into it, it shows he was acting in good faith. I would also make sure he keeps those checks that he had to cancel so he can show the check date and the date he cancelled them to prove she was being difficult.

Good luck with everything. It sounds like a long road for your brother. My condolences. Let him know there are many here that have gone through it and would love to help him out anyway we can.

Happy holidays and Happy new year!


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RE: Please help my brother!!
« Reply #2 on: Dec 21, 2007, 07:50:50 PM »
If they were not married, she has no legal obligation to let him see the baby.

He needs to file for paternity, child support and parenting time. They need a set parenting plan in place that can be enforced. He may, depending on the county's statutes, be limited in his time with a newborn, but it won't always be that way. Just don't let mom tell him he has to see the baby in her home with her supervising. Short, frequent visits are best for a little one.

Taking a parenting class (baby care) would be a good thing for him to do, as well as infant CPR.


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RE: Please help my brother!!
« Reply #3 on: Dec 22, 2007, 07:15:26 AM »
>If they were not married, she has no legal obligation to let
>him see the baby.

True. However, if he has a copy of the original birth certificate, it's going to help quite a bit. Or maybe the hospital has a copy of the original.

In any event, establishing paternity is the first place to start.

It seems odd that they'd let a mother change a birth certificate after it has been issued without the father's consent.


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RE: Please help my brother!!
« Reply #4 on: Dec 22, 2007, 07:21:38 AM »
1) In the hospital when the baby was born did he sign anything indicating he was the father? If he did that establishes paternity she can contest it and a simple blood test will determine the truth. I he is saying he is the father she is saying no they have to do a test she will probably be the one to have to pay.
2) once paternity is established he needs to go to the child support enforcement agency. He needs to file to pay child support. Have him get the amount taken strait out of his paycheck. Then there is no questions and he doesn't have to discuss money with her and she can not deney she is getting support which is what she is trying to do most states have a law that if dad does not contribute (I know wv does) that after 6 mos she can get him for abandonment and petition to have parental rights removed but he would still get stuck with child support.
3) when 1&2 are done and you stated he already filed for 50/50 and he gets to court the judge will go over visitation he needs to have the visitation drop off and pick up supervised so she can't claim he is abusing verbally/physically in front of the child. My boyfriends ex tried this one now all of the sudden the kid is traumatized "after" the visit when nobody is looking. You know what nobody is buying it niether.

Sounds like she is going to play every dirty trick in the book so make sure he is 2 steps ahead at all times. Also supervised visits are not a bad idea this gives the court time to see him in action this way if later she claims he beats or neglects the child well they already had supervised visits and the notes from that will surface and they will see that is a load of bull. He can call your local child protective agency and say what you said here and request them to give you names/numbers of "approved" supervisors he can do this on his own for his protection with out a court order. *also this may help later if she claims other things he is already seen as cooperative with the dept and out for the best intrest of the child he must focus on how good of a parent he is not how bad she is he will end up looking good that way* (pm me and I can tell you how some of that helped us) You can also request a custody evaluator that goes into both homes and sees the child with each parent then makes a decision. Also if the womans brother lives with her a public records search or trip to the court house to view criminal records might be a good idea. If he has a record for dv or drugs that could play a big part but only if he is living there and you can prove it. Remember it's not what you know its what you can prove.


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