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Parenting Issues This forum is for discussing any of the parenting issues involved in your divorce, including parenting of step-children.

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Old 07-22-2010, 12:45 PM
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So now my ex has decided he is going to move to the family cottage for the summer. This is all fine and dandy and the kids like to go up but he is refusing to drive back with them - he keeps saying, just pick them up when you come up (my mother's cottage is 20 minutes from theirs). Problem is, I don't want to go up this weekend. His solution is to get my SIL to drop them off but I have a lot of problems with that (she sleeps til noon everyday so I won't get them back til 10 at night, she interferes with my access arrangements, etc.) Plus he has the internet over the phone up there so it is hard to get ahold of him.
I am so tired of his nonsense i am going to start a court action (with or without my lawyer, who is on vacation and has this far been useless). My question is, is this considered denying access on his part (refusing to transport them back)? I have been told by my lawyer I cannot deny him access, and the kids want to go, so I am letting them go, but he shouldn't be going and saying he isn't coming back.
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Old 07-22-2010, 01:34 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gumby View Post
So now my ex has decided he is going to move to the family cottage for the summer. This is all fine and dandy and the kids like to go up but he is refusing to drive back with them - he keeps saying, just pick them up when you come up (my mother's cottage is 20 minutes from theirs). Problem is, I don't want to go up this weekend. His solution is to get my SIL to drop them off but I have a lot of problems with that (she sleeps til noon everyday so I won't get them back til 10 at night, she interferes with my access arrangements, etc.) Plus he has the internet over the phone up there so it is hard to get ahold of him.
I am so tired of his nonsense i am going to start a court action (with or without my lawyer, who is on vacation and has this far been useless). My question is, is this considered denying access on his part (refusing to transport them back)? I have been told by my lawyer I cannot deny him access, and the kids want to go, so I am letting them go, but he shouldn't be going and saying he isn't coming back.

Sorry but I do not see how he's denying you access, you can pick them up but won't, he's offered another transport option but do not like that. If it were me, for the 20 min difference I'd pick them up.

What does your order say? I mean you have transportation available by the sounds of things. Usually the person taking the children into their care is responsible for pick up. Would be the same for him, when your access is over, he would be responsible to pick them up.

If he was refusing to hand over the children, then that would be considered denying access, but from what I've read in your post/question, you just do not like the arrangements. If his SIL is the option, then request that you have them at a reasonable time.

Maybe there are others here that can better help you on this one, but I'm thinking for the 20 min or this one time when you do not want to go to the cottage, just have your SIL bring them down.
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Old 07-22-2010, 02:12 PM
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What is your normal arrangement for pick-ups and drop-offs? He should abide by this. Meaning, if you pick up the kids from his house after his parenting time at a specific time, the children should be at his house at that time.

However, he has suggested that he would allow his sister to transport the children to your house. You have no say in who HE allows to transport the children. If he chooses to allow a responsible adults to return the children as he is unable, then that is his choice to make.

The only issue with his sister returning the children is your belief that they will be returned late at night (whether you like her or not is fluff and immaterial to question at hand). If the children are supposed to be returned to your care at a specified time (say 6pm), Dad should ensure that his sister is up and on the road in adequate time to return the kids to your care at the prescribed time.
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Old 07-22-2010, 05:11 PM
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I assume by your post, that this is not the only issue that is problematic.

If it is, then you are probably wasting your time with a court action, as by the time you see the inside of a courtroom, the summer will be over and it will be a moot point.

I agree with the OP's... Dad is not refusing you access.

Good Luck!!
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Old 07-22-2010, 05:56 PM
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Does he have additional accesses during the summer while he is up there (or are you just splitting the summer in half)? If he does, then you might be splitting the driving i.e. he drives to the city to pick up the kids, you drive to the cottage to get them back.
It's not nice, but I think he has you over a barrel on this one, and not much you can do about it.
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Old 07-22-2010, 11:24 PM
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Sorry, I did not make this clear enough.
Both cottages are 2.5 hours away from the children's home. The cottages are 20 minutes apart, not my house and his cottage. What he wants me to do is make a round trip of 5 hours to get them if I am not visiting my mother that weekend (which i will not be). i have pointed out to him that this is unfair but he refuses to even meet me halfway.
My SIL will not be "on the road" anytime she does not feel like it. She is retired and has not woken up before noon for many years and certainly will not do it to accommodate me. He will not even ask her to do that and I am am not even sure she is coming back to town that day. Besides, they are his children, not hers so it is his responsibility.
Basically he is saying wait to see your children until somebody comes back to town sometime, or drive for 5 hours. I think most people would see this as unreasonable at best, at worst a form of denial of access. I would not dream of asking him to do the same.
We do not have an agreement in place which is why I am going to court, not to deal with this specific situation. I know with him to avoid it happening again he will have to be made to financially compensate me for gas/time.
Thanks for your responses but I hope this makes it a little clearer.
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Old 07-23-2010, 07:53 AM
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K so he is using his responsibility to get your kids to you by asking his sister, what is wrong with that?? He is not saying you cannot have the kids, has offered ways to make it easier but you refuse to budge. What you are going through is stuff that a lot of NCPs go through. Sometimes you just have to suck it up for a while. Once summer is over things will be back to normal. It sounds like you visit your mothers cottage alot, just not this weekend.

How old are the kids?
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Old 07-23-2010, 08:43 AM
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What would be fair is if he paid for your gas and possible time off work for one-way of the trip.

It would also be fair if you adjusted the schedule, instead of having time each week, for example, have double the time every two weeks. That cuts the trips in half.

You are each expected to provide transportation back and forth, it isn't just him, or just you. He has chosen to make it an increased trip, this should not be your expense, it could legitimatly be deducted from CS payments. But he is not denying access. There is a question of what is "easier" and you two disagree on that, and I'm sure he has his side. But "denying access" is far to strong a charge.
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Old 07-23-2010, 09:34 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gumby View Post
Sorry, I did not make this clear enough.
Both cottages are 2.5 hours away from the children's home. The cottages are 20 minutes apart, not my house and his cottage. What he wants me to do is make a round trip of 5 hours to get them if I am not visiting my mother that weekend (which i will not be). i have pointed out to him that this is unfair but he refuses to even meet me halfway.
My SIL will not be "on the road" anytime she does not feel like it. She is retired and has not woken up before noon for many years and certainly will not do it to accommodate me. He will not even ask her to do that and I am am not even sure she is coming back to town that day. Besides, they are his children, not hers so it is his responsibility.
Basically he is saying wait to see your children until somebody comes back to town sometime, or drive for 5 hours. I think most people would see this as unreasonable at best, at worst a form of denial of access. I would not dream of asking him to do the same.
We do not have an agreement in place which is why I am going to court, not to deal with this specific situation. I know with him to avoid it happening again he will have to be made to financially compensate me for gas/time.
Thanks for your responses but I hope this makes it a little clearer.
Okay, I stand by my 1st post. You say 2.5 hrs each way. Then say how you would have to drive 5 hours. If you read my 1st post you would see and also other posters have eluded to as well is that each parent is responsible for the transport when taking into children into their care.

So you would be responsible for your 2.5 hrs, then he is! Since you do not have an agreement, what has been the status quo? Sounds like the cottage for the summer is the norm and the children like that, so it's what's in the best interest of the children? Right?

I think for this one time that you've decided not to go to your mom's cottage that is 20 min apart, and since there is no agreement, I think you need to pick up your children, then he can pick them up when your time with them is over. There is also the option of his sister to bring them down, just make sure you voice your time concerns. But if by some chance they don't get home until 10pm at night then just tack the time on the other end of your access, let your ex know that is when he can pick them up.

If you want to know about denied access then I can tell you about a few of my experiences, or just read on this site, it will not take you long to see that what you're describing is not denied access.

I wouldn't make too big of a deal out of this, things can get a lot worse, I do not know you're situation, and not to make light of your concerns but really there are bigger fish to fry, your children like it up there, and they're having fun, not just with you, and it hurts, I know. They'll be better for it, especially of mom and dad are not fighting. If you're up there a lot then the times that this situation will occur will be considered an anomaly.

Anyway just my thoughts, good luck.
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Old 07-23-2010, 10:54 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LostFather View Post
Okay, I stand by my 1st post. You say 2.5 hrs each way. Then say how you would have to drive 5 hours. If you read my 1st post you would see and also other posters have eluded to as well is that each parent is responsible for the transport when taking into children into their care.

So you would be responsible for your 2.5 hrs, then he is! Since you do not have an agreement, what has been the status quo?
I don't agree with this.

Yes, generally the parent responsible for taking care of the child for their parenting time would be responsible for pickups. However, Dad has choosen to leave the city and go to the cottage 2.5 hours away (thus a 5 hour round trip for mom), which I doubt is what would normally occur for access exchanges. Exchanges where each parent lives in the same town are generally at the other parents house or school.

The only important questions are:

1. Where have you normally done exchanges in the past?

- if you have normally done them at each others house or a neutral location local to each of you, that should be continued.

2. When are the children supposed to be returned to you?

- you made it sound like the children will be returned very late in the day (like after 8pm). When do you expect them home? generally access on Sunday ends after dinner time. So he should have at least until 6pm to return the kids. So even if SIL is lazy and doesn't roll outta bed until noon, that gives her 6 hours to get ready and make a 2.5 hour trip.

It would be unreasonable to cause mom to make a 5 hour round trip to pick up the children due to dad's decision to remain up at the cottage. If he wants spend time up there, he can either a) drive them down for the normal exchange and return afterwards or b) arrange for someone else to drop them off (which he has). It would be no different then a parent temporarily moving, which each of us responding have said on this site, the person doing the move would be responsible for doing the transportation.

As for the SIL, I really doubt you know all that goes on in her life and how responsible she may be. You have jaded views and expect the worst because of those views.

And yes, it is at worst inconsideratie to ask you to do the travelling. But it is not a denial of access as he has provided alternatives for return transportation (you just choose to look at the alternative in the worst possible fashion).
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