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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 10-26-2012, 03:40 PM
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Default My 9 yr old son wants to come to my place instead of his Mom's.

Hello everyone,

My 9 yr old son is not happy at his Mom's house. She has moved in with her 80 yr old Mother and 54 year old brother (Who has major mental health issues and is a recovered drug addict) and she is rarely home until after dinner. There are no friends for my son in that neighbourhood.

He REALLY wants to come to my house, because I am always here (I work at home) and there are a TON of kids his age here.

I have tried to NOT 'rock the boat' and tell him he needs to stick to the schedule, but he is starting to realize he can simply get on the other school bus, and be brought to my place. It is just a matter of time before he realizes he has control over this and takes action.

Frankly, when it happens, I am going to let him stay. My question is, what happens legally?

Can the police come and take him to her house? I assume not. They may show up to make sure he is safe, but I will simply explain that my son obviously has 'issues' at his Mom's house - and that is what prompted him to come to my house instead. I will explain that I do not know exactly what those 'issues' are, as he just got home, and is not ready to talk about it yet. Until he does, I will let him stay.

I expect that will be that. The police will take notes, and be on there way - leaving the issue for the Family Court to deal with.

I have been told, that if this happens often enough, and we end up in court, the Judge will simply grant him more time with me, because a court order is not going to change things. In fact, it might make it more dangerous, because he could easily try and ride his bike, or walk the 4 kms from his Mom's house late at night, or in an Ottawa winter storm etc.

I should note that there has been ZERO parental alienation on my side. I NEVER speak poorly of his Mother, and I praise her in front of him whenever I can. There is however, lots of indication of his mother trying to alienate me. It appears to be back-firing though. Hence this post.

Thanks in advance for all advice!
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Old 10-26-2012, 03:48 PM
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I believe it is entirely dependant on what is written in your separation agreement or any court orders subsequent.

If you have defined access times, you can't just unilaterally change them, no matter what the circumstances.

You had best contact your lawyer and talk to them about what it will take to make an application to change access

I expect others here with more experience will chime in.
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Old 10-26-2012, 03:49 PM
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If you have a court order, and one with an enforcement clause in it, the police can very well show up and enforce the agreement. And you could find yourself facing contempt charges, accusations of PAS or HAP, and possibly even abduction.

Allowing a 9 year old to make adult decisions is wrong. Wrong, period.

Your expectations and ASSumptions are WAY out of whack. What the hell kind of parent lets the 9 year old call the shots and expects the court to validate & back them up?
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Old 10-26-2012, 03:54 PM
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@Downtroddendad: I am not changing the court orders. My son is indicating HE is going to. I see it coming, and I want to be prepared. I have done nothing to encourage his change in attitude.

Last edited by bigdad; 10-26-2012 at 03:55 PM. Reason: Direct to specific person.
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Old 10-26-2012, 03:57 PM
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@blinkandimgone: There is no enforcement clause. I can't be held in contempt for my son's decisions.
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Old 10-26-2012, 04:00 PM
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I'm sorry to be so blunt here. YOU are the parent and guardian along with your ex. HE is a 9 year old child, and not of an age where the court will allow him to make unilateral decisions.

If you want to make this happen, you will have to go through the legal process. If you attempt to do it and ask forgiveness later, a judge will not be inclined to look upon you with leniency.
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Old 10-26-2012, 04:01 PM
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Blink is absoultely right. You tell the child he disobeyed both his mother and you and that he is not to come to your house when his mother is expecting him. Tell him to think about how worried his mother must be and that you would not like it if he did not show up on your days. It is not his decision and you should support the other parent and their time until there is a new order.
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Old 10-26-2012, 04:06 PM
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So if and when he shows up, you put him in the car and you take him to his mother's house. Until the court order is changed you must do this. Just because there is no enforcement clause does not mean you will not be in contempt. The enforcement clause is just to allow the police to remove the child and place him with the other parent.

You need to speak to a lawyer, or try to speak to your ex about this. Would you let your 9 year old son skip school because he decided he didn't want to go? Common... seriously... you are setting yourself up for failure and in my opinion you are setting your son up to become a stubborn brat, by allowing him to call the shots and tell his PARENTS what he is going to do.
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Old 10-26-2012, 04:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bigdad View Post
@Downtroddendad: I am not changing the court orders. My son is indicating HE is going to. I see it coming, and I want to be prepared. I have done nothing to encourage his change in attitude.
Quote:
Originally Posted by bigdad View Post
@blinkandimgone: There is no enforcement clause. I can't be held in contempt for my son's decisions.
Wow.

Wow, wow, wow.......

Holy wtf.

I am truly speechless and don't know what else to say.

Wow.
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Old 10-26-2012, 04:10 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bigdad View Post
@blinkandimgone: There is no enforcement clause. I can't be held in contempt for my son's decisions.
Your kid is 9. Kids don't get to make those type of decisions.

You are not his friend, you are his parent. Act like one.
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