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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 02-05-2014, 04:36 PM
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Default Communication Book vs. Family Wizard

We have an existing final divorce order, obtained on consent, that states "parties are to communicate regularly regarding the children using Our Family Wizard". My ex insisted on us using it, and after the order was finalized, pushed me to set it up. I have emails indicating this clearly.

I set it up, and we used it for about 6 months almost exclusively. Texts were only used occasionally, generally for last minute "running a few minutes late" kind of situations, as allowed for in the order.

All of a sudden, my ex started having "internet problems", and pushed me for text messaging and phone calls only. I have tried to refuse, and stick to Family Wizard. In a couple of important matters, I have used regular email, because I can see they haven't bothered to log into Family Wizard for months.

Now, they outright refuse to use email or Family Wizard. They are pushing me for using a communication book, and phone calls. They sent a book, which came in the backpack of our D6, who is an avid reader with good comprehension. The comments in the book, in my opinion, would not have been good for our daughter to read. So I removed the book, and let my ex know why, and that I do not consent to the book, and that we need to use Family Wizard, as per our order.

They are accusing me of being high conflict, because I will not consent to the change. I know that they have internet at home, and on their cell phone. They have posted 50+ times on facebook groups (including Canada Court Watch), in this period when they "have no internet", but never once during this time have they used Family Wizard or replied to an email.

They have recently declared that they will not share information (such as health card numbers, sin numbers) with me unless I consent to the change.

Am I out of line, and being high conflict, to keep insisting on Family Wizard? Verbal communication does not work - they have accused me several times of saying things that I didn't, and every time I try to be firm with them on the phone, they accuse me of being threatening. Their email communications are out of control - why would I expect anything else in the communication book? Their first attempts at it, have shown they don't realize the potential harm to the children in what is being communicated.

Some kind of communication needs to be in place, for matters regarding the children. Should I, in the best interests of the kids, be backing down and trying the communication book, or should I stay firm with Family Wizard?

I suppose I will have no choice other than to file a motion to enforce using Family Wizard. I have offered mediation, but that has been refused by the ex as well.

Any thoughts? And thoughts about how to get the use of Family Wizard enforced?
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Old 02-05-2014, 05:34 PM
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Stay firm. Let them know that if they want to change the order they are welcome to file in court, however until such time there is a new court order you will be following the court order.

You do not have to file the motion, as it is already in the court order, if they want it changed they can file to have it changed.
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Old 02-05-2014, 05:37 PM
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I think the divorce order is out of line. Nobody should be legally obligated to depend on a computer and definitely not the internet.

Start using a book.

Having said all that, your ex is probably just trying to give you a hard time. Suck it up. I am sure you have had to weather much worse storms. This is small beans.
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Old 02-05-2014, 05:56 PM
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Do you have the sort of relationship where you could ask her the reasoning behind moving away from the Wizard?

Without that information, I agree with Berner and would stand firm on communication via Wizard or email only. You are not out of line, and are not being high conflict in seeking to continue to follow the agreed method of communication.

How bothersome that you are having to deal with a "they", instead of merely an ex.
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Old 02-05-2014, 07:10 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AnarX View Post
I think the divorce order is out of line. Nobody should be legally obligated to depend on a computer and definitely not the internet.

Start using a book.

Having said all that, your ex is probably just trying to give you a hard time. Suck it up. I am sure you have had to weather much worse storms. This is small beans.
Many, many people are legally obligated to, via court orders, to use Our Family Wizard... wait a bit... I am sure Tayken will post some case law to demonstrate court orders where the no internet thing doesn't fly.

No one should be legally obligated to talk to someone who cannot control their emotions, yet it happens every day.
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Old 02-05-2014, 07:15 PM
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They or he, it results in the same end - refusal to use Family Wizard that is in the court order. I point this out as it is easy to get caught up in the drama of speaking to them as opposed to only your ex. At the end of the day THEIR opinion is the same as HIS opinion.

I've heard that the communication book is not a great idea for many different reasons:

The kids can read it
It stays with the child so the other parent can't access it should they wish to review something or even reflect on it.
It doesn't allow for immediate communication if immediate communication is sought or necessary.
It is difficult to gain clarity if clarity is needed as you must wait again for the book to come back to you.
It is often read in the presence of the child immediately after transition.
Others can potentially access it and read it (teachers, daycare providers, etc.).

In our situation there is a lot of unnecessary communication. Mom can send 7-30 emails in a week. If we go through them they often have very little relevant information that we would NEED for the kids. Most of her emails are her opinions of us and other useless info. I wonder how much info is really necessary to communicate back and forth.

You should continue using OFW and when you cease communicating through other means they will eventually check it. Any text messages, emails, etc. should be responded to: check OFW. And then cut and paste their message into your OFW message to respond to what they sent you. That will commence the papertrial to show their aggressive communications.

You can't "enforce" an Order to use OFW. You can only seek help of the courts to punish someone for not using OFW through contempt. So I see no reason for you to seek a Motion.
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Old 02-05-2014, 07:23 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mcdreamy View Post
Do you have the sort of relationship where you could ask her the reasoning behind moving away from the Wizard?
The CAS social worker's notes indicate that my ex stated they "felt like they were being set up" by using Family Wizard. The internet "problem" showed up right after our CAS investigation wrapped up, with my ex's allegations unverified for the umpth time. I have been having problems since that point in consistently communicating with my ex to set up therapists and/ or psychologists to help D9.

The irony is... my ex told a different CAS worker later, that they intended to keep using Family Wizard. My ex has not logged onto Family Wizard since that day.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mcdreamy View Post
How bothersome that you are having to deal with a "they", instead of merely an ex.
Not a "they". I just try to keep the he/she out of my posts, because I find it sometimes distracts people from giving their best advice.

Quote:
Originally Posted by AnarX View Post
I think the divorce order is out of line. Nobody should be legally obligated to depend on a computer and definitely not the internet.

Start using a book.

Having said all that, your ex is probably just trying to give you a hard time. Suck it up. I am sure you have had to weather much worse storms. This is small beans.
My ex pushed for Family Wizard - I have at least 6 or 8 emails where they request it to be used. My theory is that once they started to realize that they were getting "caught" by their own actions, they realized it was damaging their position.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Berner_Faith View Post
You do not have to file the motion, as it is already in the court order, if they want it changed they can file to have it changed.
I need to have it enforced, that's the problem. Right now, when I try to call the kids, calls often get hijacked by the ex, who proceeds to discuss issues in front of the kids. I try to cut off conversation at that point, or hang up. It is difficult to call the kids, when this is the situation on the other end.

Things were manageable while we were using Family Wizard. I never had a problem with the ex "not getting" emails, and things being "lost in the mail", like I do now.

The final order has a review clause, that enables us to go back and review the need for Family Wizard. Neither of us has instigated that. In a high conflict situation as mine, I don't think a judge would "take away" Family Wizard, when it had been working well in the past?
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Old 02-05-2014, 07:35 PM
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I agree that you should follow the court order. I would make the problem of the other party not following the order the court's problem.

I am interested to know just how the court would enforce this. I haven't had personal experience/nightmare of child-rearing with a HC ex.

Would the poster file a contempt motion and go from there? What are the penalties of contempt in family court with regards to this sort of situation? Anyone have any experience with it?
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Old 02-05-2014, 10:41 PM
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BeMyself,

How much is this going to cost you?


Quote:
Originally Posted by Berner_Faith View Post
No one should be legally obligated to talk to someone who cannot control their emotions, yet it happens every day.
Sure.

No one should be legally obligated to pay the legal costs for every single obstacle that their hysterical ex throws at them, yet it happens every day.... wait a bit... until they go broke.
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Old 02-06-2014, 07:59 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AnarX View Post
BeMyself,

How much is this going to cost you?
...........

No one should be legally obligated to pay the legal costs for every single obstacle that their hysterical ex throws at them, yet it happens every day.... wait a bit... until they go broke.
We have a viable final order. There should be no need to return to court for this. But the other party refuses to budge, even mediate.

What are my choices?

Do nothing - and have my attempts to talk to our children hijacked by my ex's unwanted verbal communication? Having to record every phone call, just in case the ex alleges I said something to her again (been through this a few times now - NOTHING can be done verbally between us).

I try to follow the "rules". Cut off texting. Insist on no phone calls with ex/ cut off conversations when ex becomes involved (which is hurting kids, btw - very confusing for them when I call to talk to them and other parent takes over call).

There is NO respect for the court order by my ex. This is not the only part that they show complete contempt for.

Quote:
Originally Posted by arabian View Post
I am interested to know just how the court would enforce this. I haven't had personal experience/nightmare of child-rearing with a HC ex.

Would the poster file a contempt motion and go from there? What are the penalties of contempt in family court with regards to this sort of situation? Anyone have any experience with it?
This is why I am asking - Contempt may be an option. I have had to file a contempt motion in the past to get access reinstated, when my ex unilaterally cut it off. But the contempt was purged.

That may happen in this case - I file for contempt - and then it is purged. That would temporarily solve the problem, but isn't a long term fix. But my goal, at the end of the day, is to simply follow our order.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Serene View Post
I've heard that the communication book is not a great idea for many different reasons:

The kids can read it
It stays with the child so the other parent can't access it should they wish to review something or even reflect on it.
It doesn't allow for immediate communication if immediate communication is sought or necessary.
It is difficult to gain clarity if clarity is needed as you must wait again for the book to come back to you.
It is often read in the presence of the child immediately after transition.
Others can potentially access it and read it (teachers, daycare providers, etc.).
Good points, thank you. Even with email/ Family Wizard, the need for reasonably prompt responses (24 hr), was difficult towards the end. I don't think it in unreasonable to expect the other parent to check Family Wizard the day that access starts, and the day after it ends. And perhaps the night of weekday overnights, so any school related issues can be dealt with.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Serene View Post
You should continue using OFW and when you cease communicating through other means they will eventually check it. Any text messages, emails, etc. should be responded to: check OFW. And then cut and paste their message into your OFW message to respond to what they sent you. That will commence the papertrial to show their aggressive communications.
Precisely what I have been doing. But it has been over 4 months since they last signed on, and they have now been circumventing the order by having third parties contact me to relay messages for my ex.
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