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Your experinces, anybody, RE: visitation cut short

Started by LizaLou1, Dec 10, 2003, 06:55:46 PM

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Can anybody pass on some experience with a similar situation as described below?

Our Judge in a previous contempt finding for denying visitation ordered the BM to provide door to door interstate transportation to the BF (no longer meet half-way) as well as 15 days in jail (suspended).

At Thanksgiving the BM's commercial travel arrangements cut the visit in half and the BM specifically refused to allow the BF to transport the child by auto as he was visiting their city anyway when visitation was supposed to have started.

We filed contempt papers with the court.  

I keep wondering if the Judge will say half is better than none and believe her lies about the child having mandatory school.  The school part requires explanation.

The BM says the child  (age 15) had to make up a test.  The guidance counselor said it was ok for the child to miss the Wed before Thanksgiving.  Don't think he'll give us a written statement so its BF word against the BMs.

The important issue about the BF not being able to transport the child is that instead of letting the boy ride with his dad, the BM put him on an overnight (16 hour) Greyhound bus ride.  He missed a connection to arrive over 2 hours late Thanksgiving day and covered in vomit from someone else on the bus - not to mention exhausted and in a bad mood.

For the return trip, we did not send him home a day early has the BM had planned OR by bus.  We bought him an airline ticket.  He was much appreciative, but surprised because his mom had told him there were no more flights available and the bus was his only option since Dad "forced" the visitation.  (It's always dads fault!!)

Thanks for listening and I look forward to your replies.




How easy is it to file contempt paperS? Do we need a lawyer? Is it expensive to do ourselves? Could we do it ourselves? She didn't put the children on the plane last year, and threatening this year. I know we could've filed contempt last year but didn't. Is threats the same? We have them recorded where she is saying HE WILL NEVER SEE HIS CHILDREN AGAIN. Should we send a word for word verbatum of what the messages say to the court county clerk and ask that it be put in our file? I know this is a lot of questions but you said you filed contempt before and I just wanted to know how difficult it will be?


1. I do not know if it's easy or not as first let me say I have never gone pro-se, so doing this by yourself you would have to be very eduated on law issues.  Judges do not like people that do not know what they are doing "wasting" their valuable time in court.

2. Personally, yes you need an attorney, if you are here asking that question.

3. Any attorney is fairly expensive IF you get a decent one.

4. You can STILL file contempt charges from last year too, as long as the CONTEMPT charge has not been heard in court and ruled on you can go go back as far as you like.

My personal experience I went back 2 years, I wouldn't wait too long, but Judge did rule contempts in my favor.

5. NEVER tip your hand to what evidence you do have. This is between you and your attorney until you go to court.  If you tip your hand asa to your evidence the other party has time to refute (or just plain out lie) with controversal evidence. Just state as such:

Violation No. 1.  Bio Mom failed to put child on plane 12/24/XXX, so we have missed 12 days visitation as per the court order.

Then you will have to show the proof that child was not there.  She would possibly get up and say she sent him. So it would be your word against hers, do not use hearsay.  Have hard evidence to back up all your violations.

Her  just saying he will not see the children is not CONTEMPT.  Contempt actually has to be comitted first.  So let's say the bio mom does not send the children as stated in the court order. Then you have contempt, plus you've got the back us evidence of her saying he will not see them.

I will say I lost on one of the Contempts/violations:

She refused visitation one weekend and she flat got on the stand and said child's doctor said he was too sick to travel.  Most doctor's will not say this I've since found out.  Plus I had evidence to contrary and couldn't find it.  I had the doctor's report and a taped conversation with the nurse stating the child was not that ill.  But I let that slide.

Hope this helps you out.



Contempt hearing was yesterday.   BM arrived with no attorney (so that's 3 attorneys that have refused to work with her more than once).

The judge said he would rule after the holidays because he did not want to affect the child's holiday.  Even though we want jail time, we are glad the Judge considered the child first at this time of year.

But...... (drum role please) he was furious and chewed on the BM for 20 minutes at the end.  He said it was "unconscionable" that she would put the child on a 16-hour bus trip when his dad could have driven him in the car, which would cut the trip almost in half.

It was unbelievable as we watched her argue with the JUDGE about who got to make visitation decisions.  The Judge said he thought she had a personal agenda for denying visitation and that she appeared incapable of following a court order.  He physically came out of his chair when she made a comment on canceling our Christmas visit.   After he asked if she was trying to get thrown in jail right then and there, she finally shut-up.  He told her if we missed "one minute" of Christmas visitation, she would pay dearly.   After that you'd think we would feel confident of a visit - but somehow we don't.  

Hope everyone has a great Christmas.



the judge came out of his chair!!!! That's priceless!
Sending prayers your way that Christmas will be all you hoped for~