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Author Topic: Counseller informed mother that I requested records - problems...  (Read 8990 times)

Heston

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I'm a dad with joint legal and physical custody. I have a court order that is very specific due to the mother causing so many problems.  She still disobeys the order whenever she likes.  I requested info on my child from the counseller.  I have every right to the info but the counseller told my child's mother as well as refusing to provide the details.  I went to the supervisor and after much persistence, the counseller said she would release the records but she has told my child and her mother that I will have the records.  Consequently, I have been denied my parental time for almost a month because my child's mother is mad. 
 
Does anyone know if there's a law against a counseller informing the other parent about my request?  I know they are not required to, but need to check if there have been any laws broken.  Would really appreciate some input, if anyone knows the answer.  Thanks.
 
Heston


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Re: Counseller informed mother that I requested records - problems...
« Reply #1 on: Feb 26, 2011, 04:38:26 PM »
Not really a law broken but I would call up that supervisor and tell them exactly what went down.
"She had no reason to call the mother, as I gave her a court order stating I am to get records, and now mother has refused parental time because she is upset"  and that if this happens to another parent you would hope they change their policy as the other parent was not required to know.

Also, you can see if the counselor would be willing to have you at next session with child to help with communication. She can have you show up half way through session. If mom pulls child, you can ask for court ordered counseling so mom will not be able to pull her.

Did you file contempt of court for missed visitation?

gemini3

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Re: Counseller informed mother that I requested records - problems...
« Reply #2 on: Feb 26, 2011, 05:58:30 PM »
No laws have been broken, because both parents are guardians.  However, I think there's a very clear ethical violation.  Is she an LCSW, LPC - what kind of counselor?
 
I would file a complaint against her with the department of social work (if she's an LCSW), or whoever her licensing body is.  They have a responsibility not to endanger their clients.  By giving the mother this information without cause she not only endangered her client, but caused her client harm by losing time with the other parent.
 
After I filed the complaint, I would make sure that she no longer saw the child.
 
We had this very same situation with my husband's youngest a few years ago.  It took a few months, but she did end up getting her license suspended.  But she did a lot more than just notify about the records request.  Still, you should pursue with the licensing body, and her supervisor.
 
And definitely file a motion to show cause for the missed visition. 

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Re: Counseller informed mother that I requested records - problems...
« Reply #3 on: Feb 26, 2011, 06:09:35 PM »
What THEY both said.

Heston

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Re: Counseller informed mother that I requested records - problems...
« Reply #4 on: Feb 27, 2011, 04:25:13 PM »

Not really a law broken but I would call up that supervisor and tell them exactly what went down.
"She had no reason to call the mother, as I gave her a court order stating I am to get records, and now mother has refused parental time because she is upset"  and that if this happens to another parent you would hope they change their policy as the other parent was not required to know.

Also, you can see if the counselor would be willing to have you at next session with child to help with communication. She can have you show up half way through session. If mom pulls child, you can ask for court ordered counseling so mom will not be able to pull her.

Did you file contempt of court for missed visitation?

I haven't done that yet.  I am dealing with someone who makes false accusations and dread the repercussions.  I am biding my time until I am in a stronger position, and will then take legal action.  The mother won't pull the child from this counseller because she is helping her (the mother).  The counseller is very biased, (in favor of the mother), because she also took on the mother as a client, which I believe is unethical.


Heston

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Re: Counseller informed mother that I requested records - problems...
« Reply #5 on: Feb 27, 2011, 04:35:22 PM »

No laws have been broken, because both parents are guardians.  However, I think there's a very clear ethical violation.  Is she an LCSW, LPC - what kind of counselor?

I would file a complaint against her with the department of social work (if she's an LCSW), or whoever her licensing body is.  They have a responsibility not to endanger their clients.  By giving the mother this information without cause she not only endangered her client, but caused her client harm by losing time with the other parent.

After I filed the complaint, I would make sure that she no longer saw the child.

We had this very same situation with my husband's youngest a few years ago.  It took a few months, but she did end up getting her license suspended.  But she did a lot more than just notify about the records request.  Still, you should pursue with the licensing body, and her supervisor.

And definitely file a motion to show cause for the missed visition. 


Thanks for the input.  I am now going to lodge a complaint to the relevant board.  I've been trying to find out if this counseller is qualified.  I have a hunch she isn't.  It was court ordered that my child should see a psychologist but her mother found a way around that.  Everything concerning this counseller has been clouded by secrecy.  My child's mother sought out her own counselling with this counseller, and she has favored the mother because she is her client, which doesn't seem to me to be ethical either.  I have been trying to get to the bottom of things for some time.  I have now ensured that my child will see a qualified person who will oversee the case and liaise with the court.  It's a complicated situation in every aspect and it's been further complicated by the relationship between the counseller and my child's mother.

RoosterC

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Re: Counseller informed mother that I requested records - problems...
« Reply #6 on: Feb 27, 2011, 06:02:30 PM »
Sadly, Im in the same boat with an ex who has violated custody by taking children to her LSW therapist and enjoining kids to keep visits a secret. This is a very murky relationship and obviously, proper invitations are never forthcoming.
What I CAN tell you is to get the police involved the First DAY you are denied custody time. My Local PD took one look at the custody order, called her and informed her to bring them to me at the station or they would arrive at her house to get them..NO wiggle room. And best of all, next day I get a fresh copy of the report to bring to evaluator and court. Playing games with custody, Im told, is not popular with judges. And dont worry about if she prods the kids to say they do not want to be with you. As long as you can prove youve done nothing to earn that enmity, it looks like someone is manipulating them, which it sounds like from your posts.

gemini3

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Re: Counseller informed mother that I requested records - problems...
« Reply #7 on: Feb 28, 2011, 08:56:22 AM »
@ Heston.  Don't let the threats of false allegations prohibit you from exercising your parental rights.  That's why those kind of people make threats like that - it works for them.

We were dealing with false allegations as well.  Here's what we did with the counselor we dealt with:

1.  Requested a meeting with the counselor to dicuss child's progress.  The counselor did not return calls to schedule the requested meetings.  We made a total of 5 requests over a months time.  Each call was made with cell phone, so there were records to prove that we had called her.  (Strike 1)

2.  Requested to take child in for a meeting with the counselor while the child was in our care.  Again, ignored.  Counselor refused to treat child when child was in father's care.  (Strike 2)

3.  Requested the child's records, got a letter from the counselor denying the request.

4.  Told the GAL assigned to the case that we thought the counselor was biased against the father.  The GAL called to get the child's records, and the counselor refused to give them to the GAL.

Long story short, it turned out that she wasn't actually keeping notes regarding her sessions - as is required by law.  She was also double charging the insurance company - charging them for 2 visits per week when she was only seeing the child 1x per week.   She did an abuse asessment on the child, which she was not supposed to have done, being only an LCSW.  Her findings were that the child had been abused, but she did not report anything to DSS, as is required by law.

We reported all of this to the licensing board, and her license was suspended.  The GAL "suggested" to BM that she stop taking the child to the counselor, but there was no need, since the counselor reclused herself from the case once the GAL and the insurance company started asking for her therapy notes.  She ended up creating therapy notes, and sending two seperate sets to the insurance company and the GAL.  The two spoke to each other, and realized what was going on.
 
Then we took the child to a clinical psychologist who has done a lot of work for the court, and had him do an asessment on the child.  The mother was invited to participate, but refused.  The PsyD findings were that there was no evidence to support the allegations, and that the child appeared to have been coached to say specific things.

My guess is that your counselor will decided it's more trouble than it's worth if you start pushing her. 

Heston

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Re: Counseller informed mother that I requested records - problems...
« Reply #8 on: Mar 04, 2011, 07:03:02 PM »

Sadly, Im in the same boat with an ex who has violated custody by taking children to her LSW therapist and enjoining kids to keep visits a secret. This is a very murky relationship and obviously, proper invitations are never forthcoming.
What I CAN tell you is to get the police involved the First DAY you are denied custody time. My Local PD took one look at the custody order, called her and informed her to bring them to me at the station or they would arrive at her house to get them..NO wiggle room. And best of all, next day I get a fresh copy of the report to bring to evaluator and court. Playing games with custody, Im told, is not popular with judges. And dont worry about if she prods the kids to say they do not want to be with you. As long as you can prove youve done nothing to earn that enmity, it looks like someone is manipulating them, which it sounds like from your posts.
Thank you for the information.  My CO has been designed so the mother brings my child to my home and this is to give a clear message to the child that if mommy brings them, it's OK.  Previously, I picked up my child and the mother did things causing scenes with the child.  We live in different States but only about 40 miles apart.  So, if the mother doesn't deliver my child, I can't get my local cops to go to her place.  When I return my child I do get the local cops near her residence to accompany me because in the past she has attacked both myself and a witness.  Nothing is ever straightforward!

Heston

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Re: Counseller informed mother that I requested records - problems...
« Reply #9 on: Mar 04, 2011, 07:08:59 PM »

@ Heston.  Don't let the threats of false allegations prohibit you from exercising your parental rights.  That's why those kind of people make threats like that - it works for them.

We were dealing with false allegations as well.  Here's what we did with the counselor we dealt with:

1.  Requested a meeting with the counselor to dicuss child's progress.  The counselor did not return calls to schedule the requested meetings.  We made a total of 5 requests over a months time.  Each call was made with cell phone, so there were records to prove that we had called her.  (Strike 1)

2.  Requested to take child in for a meeting with the counselor while the child was in our care.  Again, ignored.  Counselor refused to treat child when child was in father's care.  (Strike 2)

3.  Requested the child's records, got a letter from the counselor denying the request.

4.  Told the GAL assigned to the case that we thought the counselor was biased against the father.  The GAL called to get the child's records, and the counselor refused to give them to the GAL.

Long story short, it turned out that she wasn't actually keeping notes regarding her sessions - as is required by law.  She was also double charging the insurance company - charging them for 2 visits per week when she was only seeing the child 1x per week.   She did an abuse asessment on the child, which she was not supposed to have done, being only an LCSW.  Her findings were that the child had been abused, but she did not report anything to DSS, as is required by law.

We reported all of this to the licensing board, and her license was suspended.  The GAL "suggested" to BM that she stop taking the child to the counselor, but there was no need, since the counselor reclused herself from the case once the GAL and the insurance company started asking for her therapy notes.  She ended up creating therapy notes, and sending two seperate sets to the insurance company and the GAL.  The two spoke to each other, and realized what was going on.

Then we took the child to a clinical psychologist who has done a lot of work for the court, and had him do an asessment on the child.  The mother was invited to participate, but refused.  The PsyD findings were that there was no evidence to support the allegations, and that the child appeared to have been coached to say specific things.

My guess is that your counselor will decided it's more trouble than it's worth if you start pushing her. 

 
It is heartening to know other counsellers act badly but I am sorry to hear you have also had problems.  Since you replied, there have been developments.  I discovered the counseller is not qualified.  She stalled about providing the records, demanding payment before releasing them and stalling further after payment was made.  She finally emailed to say she would be providing the records.  I asked her to inform me whether she definitely had informed my child and my child's mother that I had requested the records, and she then sent an email stating if I want any more information I have to arrange a visit and pay her.  She could have simply answered yes or no.  I contacted her again.  My emails were totally reasonable.  She replied telling me never to contact her ever again.  I have been working on my complaint and will be sending it off early next week, just as soon as the records arrive.

ocean

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Re: Counseller informed mother that I requested records - problems...
« Reply #10 on: Mar 04, 2011, 07:15:18 PM »
Does mother text? and will she answer?
Text her in the morning that you will be expecting child at xx time at the house as court ordered. See if she responds. If she doesnt, when the time comes, text again "please let me know when you will be here as it is now 5:15pm".
If she does not text, call with same as above and leave message ...then you have phone records you were calling.

Next day file contempt of court. Child is court ordered to be brought to my home XXX. Mother did not bring child on XX date at XX time. Father tried to call mother and was denied his parenting time. Father asks court for sanction against mother as it seems fit, father's lawyer fees, and make-up time to be added to his time (can get specific as to when).

Do same thing next visit...

If she is supposed to come often then wait two weeks and do this for all the visits...then file and list all the dates and how many total days you lost of parenting time.

You can have a friend notarize a letter stating children were not at your house at the above date.

Contempt of court was a little different then reg family court date. They were strict with BM and told her she needed to get lawyer as this was a serious charge (not much happens to moms but the judge will get sick of her if she continues and she wont like if she has to pay for your lawyer)

Did you try the "intent to visit" letter from this site? It is strong worded...might work and it will prove you told her that you wanted the time with the kids and to drop them off.

What is her reason for not bringing child?

ocean

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Re: Counseller informed mother that I requested records - problems...
« Reply #11 on: Mar 04, 2011, 07:22:34 PM »
We both posted at same time...
Regarding the counselor....

Does she work by herself or in a group? Call her supervisor after records come??

If she offered to see you, I would of jumped on that. Our BM had the counselor so snowballed that when DH and I walked in and talked to her after the first hour, she thanked us up and down for coming in as this was not what she was told. You have to remember, she is only hearing your ex's side of things with the child repeating what the ex has convinced her is true.

gemini3

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Re: Counseller informed mother that I requested records - problems...
« Reply #12 on: Mar 04, 2011, 09:09:13 PM »

It is heartening to know other counsellers act badly but I am sorry to hear you have also had problems.  Since you replied, there have been developments.  I discovered the counseller is not qualified.  She stalled about providing the records, demanding payment before releasing them and stalling further after payment was made.  She finally emailed to say she would be providing the records.  I asked her to inform me whether she definitely had informed my child and my child's mother that I had requested the records, and she then sent an email stating if I want any more information I have to arrange a visit and pay her.  She could have simply answered yes or no.  I contacted her again.  My emails were totally reasonable.  She replied telling me never to contact her ever again.  I have been working on my complaint and will be sending it off early next week, just as soon as the records arrive.

 
I would include all of that in the complaint filed.  As clinician treating a minor should never refuse to consult with the legal guardian of a minor they are treating.  That is a clear ethical violation.  If she is unwilling to communicate with you she should remove refer the child to another counselor.
 
Is the insurance under your name?  You could try calling them and letting them know that you have not consented to treatment.  They might withdraw the approval.

Heston

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Re: Counseller informed mother that I requested records - problems...
« Reply #13 on: Mar 22, 2011, 07:57:29 AM »

Does mother text? and will she answer?
Text her in the morning that you will be expecting child at xx time at the house as court ordered. See if she responds. If she doesnt, when the time comes, text again "please let me know when you will be here as it is now 5:15pm".
If she does not text, call with same as above and leave message ...then you have phone records you were calling.

Next day file contempt of court. Child is court ordered to be brought to my home XXX. Mother did not bring child on XX date at XX time. Father tried to call mother and was denied his parenting time. Father asks court for sanction against mother as it seems fit, father's lawyer fees, and make-up time to be added to his time (can get specific as to when).

Do same thing next visit...

If she is supposed to come often then wait two weeks and do this for all the visits...then file and list all the dates and how many total days you lost of parenting time.

You can have a friend notarize a letter stating children were not at your house at the above date.

Contempt of court was a little different then reg family court date. They were strict with BM and told her she needed to get lawyer as this was a serious charge (not much happens to moms but the judge will get sick of her if she continues and she wont like if she has to pay for your lawyer)

Did you try the "intent to visit" letter from this site? It is strong worded...might work and it will prove you told her that you wanted the time with the kids and to drop them off.

What is her reason for not bringing child?


Due to continued problems over the years, the CO states the mother and I are to communicate solely by email. This is to have a record.  She is someone who quotes aspects of the CO when she wants to, which proves she knows it inside out, but she totally disregards the CO when she chooses to.  There are times when she emails to say she will be dropping my child off, although she is never on time.  Other times she refuses to respond and doesn't bring my child.  Yet other times she claims my child is ill and I later learn she wasn't ill.  She plays all the dirty tricks you can think of. 

She is in total contempt of court.  Much as I am tempted to take her back to court on contempt charges, I am holding off doing so because I want to apply for total custody but am not yet in a position to apply for it.  Things are unbelievably bad at the moment and unbelievably complicated.

Heston

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Re: Counseller informed mother that I requested records - problems...
« Reply #14 on: Mar 22, 2011, 08:04:34 AM »

Sadly, Im in the same boat with an ex who has violated custody by taking children to her LSW therapist and enjoining kids to keep visits a secret. This is a very murky relationship and obviously, proper invitations are never forthcoming.
What I CAN tell you is to get the police involved the First DAY you are denied custody time. My Local PD took one look at the custody order, called her and informed her to bring them to me at the station or they would arrive at her house to get them..NO wiggle room. And best of all, next day I get a fresh copy of the report to bring to evaluator and court. Playing games with custody, Im told, is not popular with judges. And dont worry about if she prods the kids to say they do not want to be with you. As long as you can prove youve done nothing to earn that enmity, it looks like someone is manipulating them, which it sounds like from your posts.

 
You are right about manipulation.  The CO states my child should be transported to me by the mother, and I am to take her home.  The BM frequently disregards the CO and asks me to pick up the child.  From past experience I know what will happen if I do.  The BM and her family have physically attacked me and a friend in the past when we returned my child.  They manipulate my child so she screams and says she doesn't want to go.  They like to take videos of such episodes.  This is why the CO now states the BM is to deliver my child to me, to prevent it happening.  We are about 40 miles away in different States, so it is difficult to handle with the police.  I do always get a police escort when I return my child, after the attack I mentioned.  It is difficult to do anything about non delivery of my child.  If I were to go to their house to collect my child, and was prevented by the BM from taking her, the police would see the CO states the BM is to deliver my child, so wouldn't be able to help.  It is all very complicated.  It is a terrible situation.

Heston

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Re: Counseller informed mother that I requested records - problems...
« Reply #15 on: Mar 22, 2011, 08:17:34 AM »


It is heartening to know other counsellers act badly but I am sorry to hear you have also had problems.  Since you replied, there have been developments.  I discovered the counseller is not qualified.  She stalled about providing the records, demanding payment before releasing them and stalling further after payment was made.  She finally emailed to say she would be providing the records.  I asked her to inform me whether she definitely had informed my child and my child's mother that I had requested the records, and she then sent an email stating if I want any more information I have to arrange a visit and pay her.  She could have simply answered yes or no.  I contacted her again.  My emails were totally reasonable.  She replied telling me never to contact her ever again.  I have been working on my complaint and will be sending it off early next week, just as soon as the records arrive.


I would include all of that in the complaint filed.  As clinician treating a minor should never refuse to consult with the legal guardian of a minor they are treating.  That is a clear ethical violation.  If she is unwilling to communicate with you she should remove refer the child to another counselor.

Is the insurance under your name?  You could try calling them and letting them know that you have not consented to treatment.  They might withdraw the approval.

 
I waited to receive the records before posting.  Just read through them.  The counseller, who isnt qualified, but works for a psychologist as an assistant, appears not to have kept good records.  Some look like they've been written to protect her.  She initially claimed she couldn't release the records as it would show info not related to my child.  I asked her to redact such entries.  Well, the records I received have no redactions!  But there is nothing in the records to which the counseller referred, so obviously these aspects of the records have been withheld.  My suspicions that my child is told what to say in sessions has been confirmed.  The BM is trying to paint a picture of a fictitious situation, because her aim is to prevent me permanently from seeing my child. 
 
The counseller goes into details about her phone conversations with me and makes negative comments, but never goes into details over my child or her mother.  The counseller claims she offered me lots of visits and I always refused them.  The fact is, I asked many times to see her and she said no.  One time I did visit was after my child's mother attacked me when I returned her and I had a witness.  I visited the counseller with the witness.  I wanted the counseller to be aware of things affecting my child.  That is not even noted in the records.  I could go on.....there is so much ambiguity and outright lies.  Basically, the BM is a "career victim" and excels at it.  The counseller is totally biased toward her.  My concern is solely about my child's welfare and I have tried and tried to inform the counseller what was going on.  I warned her the mother plays a victim role.  She did not take this on board. 
 
To me, this seems like a case of unethical behavior.  I have submitted a complaint but have been asked to submit a form authorizing release of the records.  I plan on doing this now I've seen them, although I realize the actual records may be different from the ones I was given.  I also plan on submitting further information. 
 
I'd be interested to hear whether I have a case.....
Thanks, Heston

gemini3

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Re: Counseller informed mother that I requested records - problems...
« Reply #16 on: Mar 22, 2011, 11:27:57 AM »
Who is paying the insurance for the child?  The insurance should have an EOB for every session the counselor saw the child.  Make sure that the dates on the EOB's match the dates of the notes.  If there are mismatched dates, or dates where the counselor charged the insurance company but has no notes, notify the insurance company.  This is how we caught SD's counselor.  She falsified notes as well.  You especially want to show that she had a session with you (whether you paid, or the insurance paid), but made no record of that meeting.
 
You haven't said what the counselor's professional title is... is she an LCSW, LPC?  That will affect how you need to pursue this.
 
Have you sent a letter to the counselor stating that you do not consent to treatment, along with a copy of the CO showing that you have legal custody?  If so, have you sent a copy of that letter to your insurance company?
 
What kinds of things is she being coached to say?  If it's that you have abused her, you need to move to have an assesment done by a clinical psychologist (they're the only ones who should ever do that kind of assesment).
 
Don't wait on this... it could have serious impact on your child.

Heston

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Re: Counseller informed mother that I requested records - problems...
« Reply #17 on: Apr 02, 2011, 09:18:07 AM »

Who is paying the insurance for the child?  The insurance should have an EOB for every session the counselor saw the child.  Make sure that the dates on the EOB's match the dates of the notes.  If there are mismatched dates, or dates where the counselor charged the insurance company but has no notes, notify the insurance company.  This is how we caught SD's counselor.  She falsified notes as well.  You especially want to show that she had a session with you (whether you paid, or the insurance paid), but made no record of that meeting.

You haven't said what the counselor's professional title is... is she an LCSW, LPC?  That will affect how you need to pursue this.

Have you sent a letter to the counselor stating that you do not consent to treatment, along with a copy of the CO showing that you have legal custody?  If so, have you sent a copy of that letter to your insurance company?

What kinds of things is she being coached to say?  If it's that you have abused her, you need to move to have an assesment done by a clinical psychologist (they're the only ones who should ever do that kind of assesment).

Don't wait on this... it could have serious impact on your child.

 
I wanted to pay the insurance but the counseller refused it and instead, my child's mother's husband pays.  It is impossible for me to double check all the attendances because my child's mother doesn't keep me updated or sufficiently informed, but it is noteworthy that my visit together with a witness, was not recorded, particularly when it involved the reporting of the mother's violence.  I will be contacting the insurance company to pursue this because money was gained under false pretences, imo.  The counseller it turns out, is not qualified.  She works for a qualified psychologist but the psychologist never saw my child and some research produced online comments from other unhappy parents whose children were not seen by a qualified counseller.  I called two governing bodies and have submitted a formal complaint to both now.
 
As far as coaching, my child has stated a few bad things about me.  She said she doesn't like spending time with me, when she appears to enjoy weekends with me.  The other parent is trying to create a picture whereby they can stop visits.  The child does state she worries about her mother drinking, so fortunately, they were unable to coax her out of saying things like that, which have a huge bearing on the case I am dealing with.  I will be posting under a new topic, about this same matter, but slightly different subject.

CarteretCountyNCDad

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Re: Counseller informed mother that I requested records - problems...
« Reply #18 on: Jul 13, 2011, 12:30:02 PM »
probably no laws broken but definitely with his/her licensure board.
newbielink:http://carteretcountychildsupport.wordpress.com/2011/07/12/nc-child-support-abusing-fathers-for-decades/ [nonactive] and newbielink:http://carteretcountychildsupport.wordpress.com/2011/07/12/nc-child-support-abusing-fathers-for-decades/ [nonactive]

 

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