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Author Topic: Gaining Custody in PA  (Read 4556 times)

rjmurdock

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Gaining Custody in PA
« on: Apr 18, 2012, 06:49:02 AM »
My husband and I are going for custody of my stepson. We have many different issues in our favor such as mom's numorous moves with multiple partners. She has decided she is a lesbian now. She has also had many different jobs and she has been fired from all she has never quit or been laid off. We also have many examples of proof of her going out of her way to limit my husbands time with his son. She also got into a fight with her mother and quit allowing her to see the child. Although his maternal grandmother is not our favorite person we felt it was in my stepsons best interest to allow this relationship to continue so we have been sharing our time with her. She is willing to go to court and basically testify on my husbands side. We also own our home and his son has 2 stepsisters and 2 half-sisters in our home. She is also now working a swing shift job and has my stepson in daycare alot including some overnights. Now with all that we know we have a fighting chance but most recently we he came over with marks on his back from some kind of patch medication. We took pictures for evidence and then proceeded to contact his doctor to determine what it was as my husband has joint legal custody he should have been consulted. Well his doctor told us he has not been seen there in over a year. My husband then contacted his son's mother and asked again if she had changed his physician without his knowledge she said no he hasn't needed a doctor. He then confronted her about the patch marks she told him they were an herbal patch she got from her stepmother and she was trying them to calm him down and help him sleep. My husband asked for a wrapper from one of the patches and she told him no if he wanted one he could call her stepmom and get one and that my husband had no say in what she did and it wasn't his business. My husband contacted his ex's stepmom and it turns out it is something called a Mystique Lifestyle patch which is a herbal weight loss patch not for use in anyone under 18. So now we have some major concers because what else has she tried. My question is how good do our chances of getting custody sound.


tigger

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Re: Gaining Custody in PA
« Reply #1 on: Apr 18, 2012, 08:11:05 AM »
You need to change the way you look at this.  Go at it from a strictly legal perspective. 

We have many different issues in our favor such as mom's numorous moves with multiple partners
Change to: It is in the best interest of the child to experience stability in home and school environment.

She has decided she is a lesbian now.
Irrelevant

She has also had many different jobs and she has been fired from all she has never quit or been laid off.
Stability and ability to provide financially for the child.

We also have many examples of proof of her going out of her way to limit my husbands time with his son.
Vague.  Need specifics and proof.  Did she interfere with parenting time and/or the relationship or did she just not allow extra time.

She also got into a fight with her mother and quit allowing her to see the child. Although his maternal grandmother is not our favorite person we felt it was in my stepsons best interest to allow this relationship to continue so we have been sharing our time with her. She is willing to go to court and basically testify on my husbands side.
Father has been and is willing in the future to encourage the child's relationships with mother and maternal relatives.

We also own our home and his son has 2 stepsisters and 2 half-sisters in our home.
Irrelevant other than to show stability on his part.

She is also now working a swing shift job and has my stepson in daycare alot including some overnights.
Does he have Right of First Refusal where he could get the child during those overnights instead of daycare?

marks on his back from some kind of patch medication. We took pictures for evidence and then proceeded to contact his doctor to determine what it was as my husband has joint legal custody he should have been consulted. Well his doctor told us he has not been seen there in over a year. My husband then contacted his son's mother and asked again if she had changed his physician without his knowledge she said no he hasn't needed a doctor. He then confronted her about the patch marks she told him they were an herbal patch she got from her stepmother and she was trying them to calm him down and help him sleep. My husband asked for a wrapper from one of the patches and she told him no if he wanted one he could call her stepmom and get one and that my husband had no say in what she did and it wasn't his business. My husband contacted his ex's stepmom and it turns out it is something called a Mystique Lifestyle patch which is a herbal weight loss patch not for use in anyone under 18.
You probably should have called CPS for them to investigate.  You may be able to go at this from a medical neglect point of view in that he hasn't had a routine physical in over a year.

My question is how good do our chances of getting custody sound.
Depends on the judge and if you can get the emotion out of it and deal with facts and legal aspects only.

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rjmurdock

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Re: Gaining Custody in PA
« Reply #2 on: Apr 18, 2012, 08:50:55 AM »
Well actually that's how we have been using it we do have an attorney. We are aware her being gay is irrelevent it is irrelevant to us also actually except that her current girlfriend and my stepson don't get along. However, we do live in a small conservative town and in reality a judges bias can play a part in a decision and there is only 1 judge here. The half siblings is actually not irrelevant under the new PA law passed in 2011 as my stepson has a very close bond with them. Our attorney also recommended that we hold off on CPS simply for this fact if we call CPS my stepson will almost certainly have a case opened if we gain custody than we will get to deal with it. Our attorney who is not one to BS told us we have an almost guaranteed win case based on what we have. In fact her lack of availability alone he is certain would do it but she could always decide to quit before the hearing and then we would need to use other things. Yes she has interfered with parenting time and has 1 contempt against her, although she just got a slap on the wrist and don't do it again plus make up visitation. I guess I'm just stressing and needed to know if anyone else had any opinions.

rjmurdock

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Re: Gaining Custody in PA
« Reply #3 on: Apr 18, 2012, 09:49:23 AM »
I should add that my stepson is only 7.

Kitty C.

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Re: Gaining Custody in PA
« Reply #4 on: Apr 18, 2012, 01:31:15 PM »
'Our attorney who is not one to BS told us we have an almost guaranteed win case based on what we have.'
 
Now THAT makes me extremely nervous...to be honest with you, if an atty. told ME that, I'd turn tail and run.  There is absolutely NO possible way he can guarantee you a win in court.  Because it is not humanly possible to guarantee an outcome based upon the opinion of another.
 
And be careful about CPS reporting....if it gets to them via some other means, they could come after you and the father for failing to report it.  My gut says to report it immediately, but then again I am also a mandatory reporter, so my viewpoint might be slightly off.
Handle every stressful situation like a dog........if you can't play with it or eat it, pee on it and walk away.......


rjmurdock

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Re: Gaining Custody in PA
« Reply #5 on: Apr 18, 2012, 02:14:19 PM »
I guess guarantee is not the actual wording but essentially with her working swing shift therefore 4 out of 6 wks she is on 2nd or 3rd shift and the fact that she has now including daycare into the CS. This is the same lawyer we have used in the past and I honestly tell you he is not full of it. We have considered going for custody before with some of these issues but he straight out told us don't waste your money. He almost always wins his cases but that is because he is willing to tell a client don't waste your money you don't have a chance. It is also easier for him to determine the outcome because we live in a very rural area and there is only one judge for this county for family court so we know who we are going in front of and he knows how this guy rules. It has only been 2 days since we determined what the patches were although I still can't understand the logic of using an herbal weight loss patch on a perfectly healthy 7 yr old boy with the hopes of calming him down and helping him sleep. That being said clearly I am still concerned or I wouldn't be posting on here. As for CPS I will trust my attorney as husbands ex is only being given another day or two to respond to the letter sent on the 9th of April regarding her work schedule and a few other things before he files a petition for special relief and we will then be in front of the judge in a matter of days.

ocean

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Re: Gaining Custody in PA
« Reply #6 on: Apr 18, 2012, 02:43:43 PM »
Family court does not follow logic or common sense so be prepared. If mom quits her job when you serve her papers, no more issue with custody except the medical issue.
Can you call SS school and tell them you found a patch site and if they see it again to call you. Ask to talk to the social worker at school or the nurse (then his teacher). They are mandatory reporters so if they see something or he has a reaction they will know what it is AND they must report it.

rjmurdock

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Re: Gaining Custody in PA
« Reply #7 on: Apr 18, 2012, 03:17:25 PM »
Yes our lawyer did tell us if she quit her job than it will be a whole new ball game so to speak. We did talk to the school about the patch marks before we knew what they were from. My husband also talked to the guidance counselor at SS school and asked that she bring him in and talk to him. He also has a parent-teacher conference set up for tomorrow afternoon. I also have pictures of SS back with the multiple patch marks but BM claims they didn't do what she wanted so she's not using them anymore. Now if BM does quit her job her current girlfriend is not working. This would leave them unable to pay their rent or car payments ect. Now BM's mother would BM and SS to move in with her even though they are not speaking because she is her daughter and BM's father would do the same but both have informed her that the girlfriend is not welcome. We have a very good relationship with BM's mom and a fairly good relationship with BM's dad so if BM and SS moved in with either of these parties that would be good for SS also even if we don't get custody and that's what its really about after all. However, BM is one of those people who thinks she can do what she wants because she wants to. We went through this all when SS was younger in getting overnight visitation even when her own lawyer told her she would lose and she should settle on an agreement she insisted on going all the way to court with it. We know her lawyer told her that because our very old courthouse has very thin conference rooms and we heard it with our own ears.

rjmurdock

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Re: Gaining Custody in PA
« Reply #8 on: Apr 22, 2012, 08:26:54 AM »
Ok so we talked to the school and now I'm a little irritated with them. SS teacher said he's a great kid and very smart but she didn't see his behavior as anything more than a 7 yr old boy. She has several just like him and several that are worse. So that was a relief we were afraid that maybe there was something we weren't seeing and maybe he did need to see a dr about his behavior. We then asked about the patches. His teacher said she had seen the patches and sent him to the nurse to have them checked out. The nurse didn't bother to find out what they were or what they were for and sent him back to the class telling the teacher its fine lots of parents are doing it. However, the nurse was on vacation so we didn't get the opportunity to confront her on her gross negligence. My husband asked the teacher to keep and eye for any other medications that SS might be given and to please contact him if there is anything else. We then talked to the guidance counselor who had brought him in to talk to him a little and see if any of our concerns were real or not. She said she talked to SS for about 20 min and didn't really get much out of him. She said he seemed to be coached about anything that went on at BM home. She said every question got an answer like I forgot or I can't remember but only after some pause and thinking. Questions like who watches you after school and What kind of things do you do at home. She is now concerned herself and plans to bring him in again to see if she can break through the coaching and find out what is going on. I have to admit I feel a little relief as my husband and I are biased its nice to know that our concerns are not in our head and that someone else sees it too.

 

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