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Divorce & Family Law This forum is for discussing any of the legal issues involved in your divorce.

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Old 07-08-2015, 09:26 PM
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Default Best resolve for a party ignoring term of court order

Divorced, two children 13 and 10, in May had a consensual final order in regards to access and custody.

Ex has been ignoring one term of court order she wanted in the agreement since May, up to about 5 ocassions so far in regards to when one party cannot take child/ren to an activity, supposed to contact other party first and see if they can take them before having a third party (which would include partner or spouse) aka first right of refusal.

Ex has ignored emails in regards to ignoring term of the order and ex has refused to pick up registered letter in regards to the on-going contempt of the term of the order, it has been sitting at the post office for almost a month.

What is the best next course of action? Bringing forth a contempt motion? A motion to change the term / language / enforcement on the basis of this on-going contempt?

I know it will be seen as a small item to some but it is a vindictive play by her to prevent the child/ren having any additional time with their father, who only has access and limited access to begin with. In some cases, I am helping coach my son's sports team and she will still refuse to allow him to go to and from that activity with me even when she has a conflict with my other child or work.

Help!
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Old 07-08-2015, 09:41 PM
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What is the actual wording of the agreement?
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Old 07-08-2015, 10:08 PM
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"The parties shall, when possible each provide 48 hours notice, or as soon as possible in the case of an emergency, to the other, if they can not take the children to an activity while the child is with that parent, thus allowing the other party to facilitate with the transportation and allow the child to attend the activity should they wish to attend".

The parties in the court matter were her and myself no other third parties or spouses. She will send the kids with a third party including her spouse rather than follow the agreement of this term first. Even when I offer in advance as I know of a schedule conflict for her, she ignores my offer, does not respond and sends one of the children instead with a third party.
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Old 07-08-2015, 10:12 PM
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This is a term she wanted in place to agree to the final order and I have that in writing from her then lawyer because she wanted to ensure I took the children to all activities when they are with me, yet she wants to ignore this term during her time with the children now because it has basically is now a first right of refusal clause. If one party can get away with ignoring terms of a consensual final order when it only benefits them then what is the purpose of having court orders in the first place?
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Old 07-09-2015, 12:01 AM
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This sounds like very small potatoes to me, and definitely not worth a contempt motion or anything that involves the legal system.

Yes, she should be following the order to the letter, and yes, it's very annoying that she doesn't, but what do you expect a court to do about it? Fine her? Issue another order (which she may or may not follow)? If the issue is that you don't like Mom's new partner helping with the kids, there's no court remedy for that.

If the kids aren't being negatively affected by it (and it sounds like they aren't, as they're going to their activities while with Mom, it's just that they're being taken by Mom's spouse rather than Mom herself), let it go. It's annoying to you but not affecting the kids, so why make a lot of drama about it?

Your order is also ambiguous enough (requiring 48 hours notice, "when possible", etc.) that Mom could easily say that she didn't know 48 hours in advance that she couldn't take the kids, so that clause of the order doesn't apply. Alternately, she could say that she is able to fulfill her responsibility of making sure the kids get to their activities by utilizing the help of her spouse, so she doesn't need to call on you.

Just let this one go.
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Old 07-09-2015, 01:34 AM
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I feel like sexism is alive on this board I bet if we plotted the amount of times women side with women and men vs men we would find a sexist trend.

You have signed the consent in May, it is now July. It isn't that long ago.
I would track it for 6 more months, communicate your displeasure to her in various ways (email, phone call, registered letter). Note down the occurrences.

Make it clear to her she is breaking the court order. Ideally, getting her to acknowledge that is great.

Your kid is 13 they should be able to call you and say come get me to activity Y,

My moron ex-wife was doing the same thing the first year but for whatever reason she now "lets" me take the kids to activities rather than get their uncle or something to take them..

Its somewhat small potatoes but since the order was specifically written in then I would eventually get it enforced.

Contempt is possible but hard.
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Old 07-09-2015, 06:38 AM
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To me this is one of those unenforceable clauses. It's nice if both parents respect the agreement they made, but really it's not enforceable. She is not denying you parenting time because it's already her time. As long as the kids are making it to their events that's all the matters.

My fiancÚ has a clause in his agreement that states he must make sure the kids are at their events, well he did for the first couple years and then his ex stopped taking them on her time. Now we just plan events on our time only.
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Old 07-09-2015, 07:44 AM
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My partner has had this type of issue for four years. It is small potatoes and unenforceable. I hate to say that because she should be following the order but they dont. She knows it bugs you so stop letting her know it bugs you. Your 13 yo is almost old enough to work with you on this stuff. However, kids get sick of the fighting between their parents so dont let them think its causing bs between you.

It sucks but theres really not much the court can do and your ex knows it.
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Old 07-09-2015, 03:35 PM
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I know it is small potatoes to some of you but when one has less than 25% regular access time with their kids and is coaching said activity, it isn't small potatoes that extra car and one on one time. If it is unenforceable then why have it as a consensually agreed to term of the order then? That my ex required! The language is the parties are entitled to ensure they get the kids there when the other can't. A grandparent or spouse or partner is not a party in this matter so yes it is a big deal when she has a third party taking them instead of offering me up the first right of refusal. So what I am hearing here is that as a female she can ignore terms of the court order than benefit her but if I did so as the male, I'd get screwed in court.
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Old 07-09-2015, 03:49 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DontGiveUp View Post
I know it is small potatoes to some of you but when one has less than 25% regular access time with their kids and is coaching said activity, it isn't small potatoes that extra car and one on one time. If it is unenforceable then why have it as a consensually agreed to term of the order then? That my ex required! The language is the parties are entitled to ensure they get the kids there when the other can't. A grandparent or spouse or partner is not a party in this matter so yes it is a big deal when she has a third party taking them instead of offering me up the first right of refusal. So what I am hearing here is that as a female she can ignore terms of the court order than benefit her but if I did so as the male, I'd get screwed in court.
No, what you're hearing here is that this is not the hill to die on. Yes, Mom is not following the court order, but she isn't interfering with your access time, which is the biggie. If you were female, it would not be the hill to die on either. Links is the only one who brought gender in (and he likes to bring gender in everywhere).

Of course, if you feel that going to court would result in complete vindication for you and in your ex suddenly becoming co-operative and following the order in every particular, go right ahead. But I have a feeling that wouldn't happen.
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