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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 05-19-2012, 12:23 PM
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Default Now telling me I can't come to the house?

Consent Order of 9/30/11 states that access to my daughter (D2) now 15 months old "pickup and drop off of the child to be at the Respondent's residence".

Because the ex doesn't live near any public facilities except a park, which is a 5 minute walk, what I had done until now is pull up 5-10 minutes early, so as not to be late. I park the car, turn off the ignition, take baby out of her car seat, and bring her on my lap to try to have a nice 5-10 minute conversation before dropping her off.

D2's mom would always come out of the house as soon as she sees my car pull up, frantically waving her arms to get baby's attention. Baby who hasn't seen the other parent for a long time naturally wants to go to the other parent upon sight.

I asked the ex if she would please wait inside until the end of our access time, and she refuses. So now, with the better weather, I park a bit down the street. Then I will walk up to the house with baby when the time has come.

Last Wednesday and Thursday ex offered me extra time - 6 daily hours instead of the 4 hours under the consent order. She is the gatekeeper and all I can do is ask once, and hope she agrees. It's random and she doesn't always respond or agree. Wednesday went really well and I've found some great places for parents to bring little children, which is great for us since I don't have a home in Burnaby.

9AM Thursday she has not brought the baby out as usual, so I walk up and ring the doorbell. I notice a large, overflowing ashtray with cigarette butts, AT GROUND LEVEL. I have seen my daughter playing in this area frequently. I ring the bell and am happy to see my daughter, I am thinking about nothing else except a smooth handover and spending time with her.

Ex is ANGRY. She yells at me and says "you are NOT to be coming to the house! My parents have made it VERY CLEAR you are NOT WELCOME HERE!" I calmly state that the order states pickup and drop off from the house. She says "FINE!!!" and appears to calm down. She hands baby over to me. I then say (probably should have waited until later), would you please keep that ashtray out of reach of the baby? And I point to it. Ex goes crazy and slams the door on us.

I buckle baby into her seat, program GPS for the family place we will be going to, and am about to drive off when the ex comes out of the house and pounds on my car window. I make sure doors are locked and roll down window slightly. She demands I turn D2 back over to her. She says the order says noon to 4, she no longer agrees to 9am to 3pm as she had agreed in the email. I tell her I am keeping baby until 3, and to please step away from the car. She threatens to call the police and then threatens me: "you had better watch your back, (my name)!)

Because she has called the police on me before, I call the local RCMP constable who had dealt with the incident last time. I leave him a voice mail and explain the situation. I send an email to the ex, her lawyer, and my legal secretary. I inform them exactly where we will be and from when, I include a copy of the email agreement for 9-3pm access, and state that any frantic calls to the police or disruption of our visit will not be tolerated. I get no response to this and the remaining 6 hours go very well.

I get back at 3PM and walk baby back up to the house. The ashtray is still there on the floor. I take a photo of it with my phone before ringing the doorbell. Ex is furious that I came to the door again. I simply inform her what baby ate, when she had her nap, and when her last diaper change was, I say goodbye to my daughter, and walk away.

I send an email to the ex, her lawyer and her mother with the photograph of the ashtray. I ask politely that they please not have cigarette butts or any dangerous objects at ground level where the baby plays.

Ex's mom writes me back, copying the ex but not the lawyer. She tells me I ought to choose my battles wisely. She tells me I am not to come to the house for any reason whatsoever, that I am not welcome there, and that I may call my ex on her cell and she can bring the baby to me wherever I am. I reply that I intend to follow the court order of pick up and drop off of my daughter from her home, and that I have never come to her home for any other reason, and that I expect her to keep cigarette butts off the floor where baby plays.

These people have threatened to have me killed before. I think they are more bark than bite, but what's most upsetting is the way they speak to me and about me in front of the baby. Is there anything I should be doing here other than taking notes? Wednesday I am super-dad "worthy" of 4 extra hours of access time, Thursday I am a criminal intruder who had better "watch your back".
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Old 05-19-2012, 12:38 PM
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well at least they are not smoking in the house. I would leave the cig butt thing alone. You cannot control that. Have you seen your child playing with the butts??

Who owns the house in question?? If it is your exs mother then just do as she asks and maybe wait down the block and call the mother from there. Why push buttons?? Just remember if you want her to abide totally by the court order then you may lose out in the end. She has been willing to not follow the order and give you extra time with your daughter. You push following the court order to the letter then that is what she will do.
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Old 05-19-2012, 12:43 PM
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Ex's mom and dad own the house, as far as I know. Ex has lived there since she was born, with a 3-4 year gap where she lived out of the house, including with me for 11 months in 2010-2011.

I have seen the child playing in the area where they keep the butts. I don't think cigarette butts should be left on the ground where children play. Are you saying as a parent you wouldn't say anything?

When she threatened to have me killed in late 2011, I asked that we set a location other than that house for pick up and drop off of the child. My lawyer said unless I could prove a direct threat, it was unlikely to be changed. The ex refused to consent to a different location, even though I requested it repeatedly. I am not sure why I should agree to vary that part of the order all of a sudden?

I want to be reasonable, but please understand, the last time we went to court, the ex tried to point out all these ways I had NOT followed the order. Specifically about how we would handle rescheduling requests. I have no doubt she would say, "he has refused to come to the house, he insists on doing the exchange down the street".
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Old 05-19-2012, 01:03 PM
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how about not going to the door?? Just text the mother when you get there and she can meet you when you are parked in the public street??
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Old 05-19-2012, 01:08 PM
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Bring a recorder w/you next time, and no there's nothing you can do re: where they have the cigarette butts. This is a judgment call on their part and NO ONE (ie: CAS) is going to make an issue out of it. You will be on your own arguing that point til you're blue in the face.

SOS was not saying she would be okay or not okay with the location of the ashtray and cigarette butts - she was merely stating that there's nothing you can do about that. Hey, in a perfect world you two (ex and you) would get along, not be in court and be able to communicate all the little, and 'not so little' things. But that is not the case. It doesn't sound like it will be the case any time soon, either.

Your pic of the ashtray isn't going to factor in anywhere, but fine.. you took a pic. If the baby was eating them and covered in ashes - who knows? Maybe that pic would be useful (one would think). But that (as far as you know) has not occurred. It may never occur.

Having said all that, I do think it's pretty whacky that she ran up to your car and demanded the baby back. You have a totally shitty situation on your hands there. Get the recorder. It may be useful for the "watch your back" comments and any other threats.
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Old 05-19-2012, 01:09 PM
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The order says pick up and drop off from the house. The order has been in effect for 8 months. There were two problems with the procedure: 1, the death threats in 2011, when I asked to have the procedure changed, and she insisted, no, it has to be pick up and drop off from the house. 2. Now, when as of two days ago she is insisted, no, it has to be not at the house but somewhere else.

I think I understand what you are saying about being reasonable, but I would like a second opinion. For one thing, the weather is only good in Vancouver a few months of the year. Do I need to be in a situation where I have to walk the baby up the street in the driving rain in winter, when the order clearly states pick up and drop off from the house?

To be clear, this is a CONSENT ORDER. Meaning her and I agreed it would be at the house.
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Old 05-19-2012, 01:13 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by singledadoftwogirls View Post
The order says pick up and drop off from the house. The order has been in effect for 8 months. There were two problems with the procedure: 1, the death threats in 2011, when I asked to have the procedure changed, and she insisted, no, it has to be pick up and drop off from the house. 2. Now, when as of two days ago she is insisted, no, it has to be not at the house but somewhere else.

I think I understand what you are saying about being reasonable, but I would like a second opinion. For one thing, the weather is only good in Vancouver a few months of the year. Do I need to be in a situation where I have to walk the baby up the street in the driving rain in winter, when the order clearly states pick up and drop off from the house?


To be clear, this is a CONSENT ORDER. Meaning her and I agreed it would be at the house.
are they in a city street?? One with sidewalks?? If so then park in front of the house and text the mother. That way you are not tresspassing on the property and still close to the house. The order may say from the house but does it say that you go up to the house and ring the doorbell?? If you are in the street in front of the house it is still at the house.

For the death threat, were the police called and were there charges??

Last edited by standing on the sidelines; 05-19-2012 at 01:17 PM.
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Old 05-19-2012, 01:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hadenough View Post
Bring a recorder w/you next time, and no there's nothing you can do re: where they have the cigarette butts. This is a judgment call on their part and NO ONE (ie: CAS) is going to make an issue out of it. You will be on your own arguing that point til you're blue in the face.
I agree with you. I am not saying there is anything legal I could do, or that the baby is about to choke on them tomorrow. I just find it shocking when people tell me, don't say anything, keep your mouth shut, express no concern. I mean it's my child for god's sake! It would be nice if we got along and cooperated, but I am still going to speak up. I thought the photo might MOTIVATE them to be a little more careful, and I predict it will. I mean why would you leave anything dangerous on the floor when an infant is crawling around?

I am sure it was just an oversight on their part, not maliciousness or recklessness. For example when she came with the baby to see me in Kelowna, she pointed out a popcorn kernel that my 7 year old must have dropped on the ground. She said, "this shouldn't be on the ground when baby is here, would you mind if I vacuumed?" No problem and thank you! Is how I replied.

Quote:
SOS was not saying she would be okay or not okay with the location of the ashtray and cigarette butts - she was merely stating that there's nothing you can do about that. Hey, in a perfect world you two (ex and you) would get along, not be in court and be able to communicate all the little, and 'not so little' things. But that is not the case. It doesn't sound like it will be the case any time soon, either.
Agreed.

Quote:
Your pic of the ashtray isn't going to factor in anywhere, but fine.. you took a pic. If the baby was eating them and covered in ashes - who knows? Maybe that pic would be useful (one would think). But that (as far as you know) has not occurred. It may never occur.

Having said all that, I do think it's pretty whacky that she ran up to your car and demanded the baby back. You have a totally shitty situation on your hands there. Get the recorder. It may be useful for the "watch your back" comments and any other threats.
Yes, I have a recorder. My problem so far is I never think to have it running. As I said, Wednesday was pleasant, kind, cooperative, and an extra 2 hours for the day with the extra two granted for the next morning. On Wednesday night, ex sent me a kind email, saying she loved the choices of family drop in places I made, and was I staying now with a family as she would like to meet them. I said I wasn't staying with a family, yet, but she was welcome to come to the Gymboree to help me select the classes if she wanted. No response to that, but when I got to her house at 9AM she was furious I "dared" to come to the front door. I didn't even THINK I needed the recorder running.
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Old 05-19-2012, 01:19 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by standing on the sidelines View Post
are they in a city street?? One with sidewalks?? If so then park in front of the house and text the mother. That way you are not tresspassing on the property and still close to the house. The order may say from the house but does it say that you go up to the house and ring the doorbell?? If you are in the street in front of the house it is still at the house.
It is a fairly busy city street and there is not always parking directly in front of or near the house. It depends on the time of day, really.

With all due respect if I have an access order BY CONSENT for pick up and drop off at their HOME, I don't think walking up with the baby to bring her or pick her up can be considered trespassing. That frankly makes no sense. It's trespassing when you don't have a legitimate reason to be on the property. Postal workers, salespeople with a permit, and people with an access order specifying that location, date and time, aren't trespassing.

The order doesn't state in front of the home, down the street from the home, text or call before, or anything like what you are suggesting. It is very clear. Pick up and drop off AT THE HOME at set dates and times. We have liberty to vary the dates and times by mutual consent, but that is where we have difficulty. Changing the location and procedure is a NEW issue she has just thrown into the works.
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Old 05-19-2012, 01:22 PM
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Expect the Unexpected, Dad. Use the Recorder. Sometimes it will be blah blah blah. But other times - it just could be priceless!

Her moods (as you describe them) sound volatile and unpredictable.
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