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Author Topic: Need advice to get daughters back in my house  (Read 3930 times)


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Need advice to get daughters back in my house
« on: Aug 08, 2011, 04:07:39 PM »
As concisely as I can:
I was somewhat forced to sign custody over to my ex in 2006 when I lost my job and then my apartment (from not being able to find work and pay the rent). I moved into my parents' home 2 hours away for 5 months to get back on my feet. During that time,  he finally had his shot at getting full custody (we had joint at the time). He knew I had no money to hire a lawyer, so he told me that if I didn't sign the papers he had drawn up that he would take me to court. I couldn't afford an attorney and I know not to walk in front of this judge without one, so I signed them and told him we would resume joint custody when I moved back into town.
5 years later, he still refuses to give back joint custody. I've tried for years, and so have my daughters (ages 15 and 11 now), to get him to resume joint custody. He refuses and calls them ungrateful brats for asking. Just recently, he told me he wanted to go back to our arrangement of every other week with the kids, but that he didn't want paperwork involved. (He has always tried to control me, and this is his way of getting away from the kids to be with his NOW wife, WAS girlfriend at the time, but still having the "say so" in everything.) He even tells the schools that I can't pick my kids up without his permission!
His own mother has told me and my daughters that they should just tell him they want to move in with me because he's so mad all the time. He's emotionally abusive and manipulative with them. He scares them to death with all the screaming in their faces. He grounds them and takes away phones and privileges at the drop of a hat. I have photos of my oldest daughter's neck where he came into MY house when I wasn't home and put his hand around her throat. His own new wife complained to me that he is mean and disrespectful to her in front of his family and friends. His mother told me he doesn't know what he's doing when it comes to raising girls. (She would NEVER tell HIM that, though.)
What I need to know is how to get them back to me. The age in Tennessee is 12 for proper/significant weight to be given to a minor's request as to which parent they want to live with. However, I don't have $5,000 for an attorney. Is there an easier/less expensive way?
I asked his wife to convince him sign the paperwork when I get it ready, and she agreed, but she'll probably decide not to. The only attorney I've contacted so far wants five grand to just type up a revised custody agreement. Everyone is so afraid of him, but I've never seen him stand up to a man. He only pushes around women and little girls so I don't see why. He just flies off the handle at the smallest things, so everyone avoids making him mad.
How can I get my girls back into my house??


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Re: Need advice to get daughters back in my house
« Reply #1 on: Aug 08, 2011, 04:34:35 PM »
Take him up on the offer to do the every other week NOW. Get that started...Will he sign something that just says you can take girls to dr and pick up and have all access to school- pick them up. If you can get it notarized that would be good. Tell him if you take them one week on, one week off then you need this paper for doctors and school.

Then see how that goes for a few weeks and start getting the paperwork ready. If it is working then you may not want to go to court, and just live out the last few years if he is not giving you a hard time about picking up from school. Girls can then ask for more time and he may allow that.

Go to family court and get change of custody papers/modification of a parenting/visitation plan. These papers should be free or a small fee. Our state has it online. Fill it out. The reason for change: Mother requests joint custody and updated parenting plan as children have been with her half the time since XX.

Do not give what you fully want in those papers. That is just the petition and he will get a copy of that. Ask for joint as that is all you need for school/dr. Why piss him off more when joint will get what you want.

Remember to tell girls that the grass is not always greener on the other side. They may be punished with you and you will expect certain things in your house too. Teen girls is a very hard age... They should not be hit/bruised so that needs to stop. If that happens again, they call you/911.

Regardless, you can fill out paperwork and represent yourself in court if you feel comfortable. Just tell your side, ask for a GAL to be assigned to the case who will be the girls lawyer and represent what they want to the judge. Then you will see if he will fight it or not, at 15, she has a lot to say but she can not just say she likes mom better.

You may want to try an email to you ex just stating you want to start the 50/50 now and that you would also prefer to leave it out of court if you two can make it work which means a notarized statement saying you can take girls to dr and all school issues. (You can type it up and have him just get it signed). Have him let you know by a certain date (a week?).


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