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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 11-12-2016, 10:48 PM
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Default Shared/joint custody cooperation/communication requirement

I know that generally the courts order joint and/or shared custody in cases where parents cooperate and communicate well

parent A has custody but is claiming there is no communication or cooperation for joint/shared custody

Parent B has access but is claiming material change and that there is cooperation and communication

parent A wishes to have child on Christmas Day/eve weekend as well as New Year's Eve/weekend

Parent A cancelled parent Bs visits that fell on Christmas Eve and New Years the first Christmas after order was made, parent A in writing said pick another day or you lose your visit - I know there is case law about sole custodial parents changing visits or threatening to cancel visits For access parent when they wish to do so

Parent B had contacted parent A in advance to arrange something but Parent A was being difficult and wanted to provide work schedule, never did, and ended up giving no additional time on Christmas and cancelled visits that fell on those days

Parent A, after being taken to court, offered parent B for time but excluded Christmas eve day and New Year's Eve and day. Parent A had the majority of the time. Parent B asked to split the break in 2 but Parent A asked for daycare costs. Parent Bs lawyer sent parent As lawyer a letter and As lawyer said these are things the parent should be able to resolve on their own - I am thinking if this is something they will use as a weapon against communication and cooperation. Parent B accepted he time that was being offered in fearing of getting no time at all

Parent B, this year, asked to split the time in half. Parent A said she will advise what dates Parent B can see his child but will not be getting Christmas or New Years weekend. Parent As argument is that parent B doesn't célèbre ate those days. Parent A advises that she will share the reminding days in half once she has her work schedule

Parent B also asked for travel consents and for Parent A to apply for passport.

Parent B sent letter to OC reiterating the request and staying that that it appears Parent A wishes to have child on both Christmas and New Years weekends and to share the remaining days based on her unpredictable work schedule - once she has it from work. Parent B further stated he has time booked off work and wishes to travel with child and provided travel consents.

Question: which parent is source of conflict here and which parent would appear as the reasonable parent here? Should parent B back down and just take whatever Parent A offers or should Parent B proceed with a motion?

What would reflect better for joint custody? Parent A has a history of being difficult with access and denying holiday requests unreasonably and switching dates and times to suite her own needs and subsidized daycare regulations. Parent a wants parent B to pay 100% daycare costs and has stated in writing that Parent B will forfeit visits if daycare is not paid in advance , i.e., you need to give me the money or you lose your visit

Please no jumping to conclusions. If something is not clear just ask and I will answer or clarify.


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Last edited by trinton; 11-12-2016 at 10:52 PM.
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Old 11-13-2016, 08:06 AM
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Joint custody is not going to solve your access disputes. Joint custody means you discuss school, medical, religion, etc... it doesn't mean time sharing.

What you need is a defined parenting agreement so that each year you both know who has what holidays with the children. Obviously you cannot work this out between yourselves and you should follow what dispute resolution clause you have in your agreement


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Old 11-13-2016, 09:26 AM
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Child support/section 7 (anything to do with money) and access are mutually exclusive, meaning you cannot withhold the child if payment is not made. There are many resources online that specifically state this that you can reference to her, including on FRO's website.

As BF said, you need a more specific arrangement set ouy in detail to reduce the amount of conflict. If you are claiming that the two of you can, in fact, cooperate and communicate you will need to prove this- provide examples of good email communication between you two.

Alternatively, if you cannot communicate and cooperate, consider parallel parenting.

Either way, make sure you document all communication where she is refusing to be reasonable and especially where she is stating you must buy the time with your child by paying unreasonable expenses before being allowed to see the child
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Old 11-13-2016, 12:01 PM
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Originally Posted by blinkandimgone View Post
Child support/section 7 (anything to do with money) and access are mutually exclusive, meaning you cannot withhold the child if payment is not made. There are many resources online that specifically state this that you can reference to her, including on FRO's website.

As BF said, you need a more specific arrangement set ouy in detail to reduce the amount of conflict. If you are claiming that the two of you can, in fact, cooperate and communicate you will need to prove this- provide examples of good email communication between you two.

Alternatively, if you cannot communicate and cooperate, consider parallel parenting.

Either way, make sure you document all communication where she is refusing to be reasonable and especially where she is stating you must buy the time with your child by paying unreasonable expenses before being allowed to see the child


Thanks. My question is now. Should I just accept what ever she is offering as interim pending all decision, to show I'm the more flexible and willing parent or should I proceed solidly through for a split in half Christmas schedule

Could they argue. These parents can't figure Christmas among themselves and joint custody or shared custody is not workable ?

I do keep hearing parallel parenting from lawyers I meet with. I think that may be where I am headed.


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Old 11-13-2016, 04:47 PM
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Originally Posted by trinton View Post
Thanks. My question is now. Should I just accept what ever she is offering as interim pending all decision, to show I'm the more flexible and willing parent or should I proceed solidly through for a split in half Christmas schedule

Could they argue. These parents can't figure Christmas among themselves and joint custody or shared custody is not workable ?

I do keep hearing parallel parenting from lawyers I meet with. I think that may be where I am headed.


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Yes.

I suggest you bring in a third party (who is not a lawyer working for either parent). Can A and B agree to go to mediation to put together a very detailed holiday schedule? Even if mediation doesn't work, showing that you tried to keep this dispute out of court is important. I agree with everyone else - you need as detailed a parenting plan as possible, leaving as little to negotiate as possible.
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Old 11-13-2016, 07:53 PM
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Default Shared/joint custody cooperation/communication requirement

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Yes.



I suggest you bring in a third party (who is not a lawyer working for either parent). Can A and B agree to go to mediation to put together a very detailed holiday schedule? Even if mediation doesn't work, showing that you tried to keep this dispute out of court is important. I agree with everyone else - you need as detailed a parenting plan as possible, leaving as little to negotiate as possible.


So like what? Send a letter to OC requesting mediation? Have I created conflict by sending a letter to her lawyer saying her proposal for Christmas doesn't allow me to go on vacation? Or should I have discussed that with mom directly ? I requested from mom to have either first or second half and that was a no.

Can I not argue back that mom is being unreasonable by wanting access on both weekends? Interruptions during Christmas break access doesn't allow for vacation. I can't fly out then fly back for mom to have her 6 hour or 2 day access then fly out again...

The matter is already before the court. The final order has no holiday schedule and my requests for holidays have historically been unreasonably denied.




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Old 11-13-2016, 07:59 PM
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So like what? Send a letter to OC requesting mediation? Have I created conflict by sending a letter to her lawyer saying her proposal for Christmas doesn't allow me to go on vacation? Or should I have discussed that with mom directly ? I requested from mom to have either first or second half and that was a no.

Can I not argue back that mom is being unreasonable by wanting access on both weekends? Interruptions during Christmas break access doesn't allow for vacation. I can't fly out then fly back for mom to have her 6 hour or 2 day access then fly out again...

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Well, yes. A better question is whether you want to have something to argue with Mom about in court or whether you want to take a shot at resolving this so that you won't be going through the same thing every year until Kid is 18. Mediation might not get you anywhere, but it seems like you're not getting anywhere as it is.
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Old 11-13-2016, 08:05 PM
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Well, yes. A better question is whether you want to have something to argue with Mom about in court or whether you want to take a shot at resolving this so that you won't be going through the same thing every year until Kid is 18. Mediation might not get you anywhere, but it seems like you're not getting anywhere as it is.


I did sent to her lawyer along with my letter about my request travel consents and asked to get back to me

I guess at this point I have to wait to see what they come back with. Last year they came back with, you don't celebrate Christmas and you don't celebrate New Years. I don't think I can let them bully me again this year.

I also know that mom can't create conflict on purpose and then say there is no communication/cooperation.

Is she being unreasonable by wanting to interior current court order and dictate what schedule she wants for Christmas? Technically she'll be in contempt of court if she withheld a my weekend that falls on Christmas since any other time is to be agreed upon. But I know contempt motions are sure ways to kiss your chances for joint custody goodbye.


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Old 11-13-2016, 11:20 PM
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I know that generally the courts order joint and/or shared custody in cases where parents cooperate and communicate well
That is untrue.

Parents that are litigating in court generally do not cooperate well. These parents have chosen to spend tens of thousands of dollars rather than come to an agreement.

If joint custody was only ordered for cooperative parents, then it would almost never be ordered.

From http://canlii.ca/t/1n29p

Quote:
[65] In determining whether a joint custody order is appropriate, one must take care not to hold the parents to an unrealistic level of mutual co-operation. After all, they are estranged.[25] The co-operation needed is workable, not blissful; adequate not perfect. And, one must not use a too-finely-calibrated yardstick for measuring parental character. The quest for joint custody must not be restricted to those who can pass the Ozzie-and-Harriet test.
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Old 11-13-2016, 11:26 PM
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Default Shared/joint custody cooperation/communication requirement

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That is untrue.



Parents that are litigating in court generally do not cooperate well. These parents have chosen to spend tens of thousands of dollars rather than come to an agreement.



If joint custody was only ordered for cooperative parents, then it would almost never be ordered.



From http://canlii.ca/t/1n29p


Notice how I didn't say always and Used the word "generally" ?


I have dozens of other reasons that joint custody is granted absent of communication. All supported by case law.

To balance the power imbalance

To allow the other parent to obtain information from 3rd parties - when 3rd party simple won't release information unless they have custody - and there are 3rd parties that won't release information without sole custodial parents consent regardless of what the order says

Any many many more. But thanks, I'll add yours to my list.

It looks like my lawyer didn't ask for Christmas in my motion to change. Now the question becomes, can I bring a motion for something that is not in my motion to change??

It was discussed at settlement conference that an amendment could be done after the focus hearing but that was a private conversation....

Sometimes I'm just so happy my old lawyer is off the record. She tied more knots when she was supposed to be untangling knots.



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