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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 01-11-2013, 03:58 PM
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Default Reality check: 50/50 for a 3.5 year old?

Today I had a bit of a shock.

I was interviewing a lawyer with over 30 years of experience and who came highly recommended from a friend who used him.

His comment was that because I'm the father and my daughter is 3.5years, no judge in the Ottawa area will award me 50/50 till she is 6 or 7. The most I can hope is around 30% now.

I do not want to harm my daughter and I want what is best for her. Would she be harmed with a 50/50 custody at this age? She is a normal happy child and I have been told by many that she talks like a 5year old.

Has anyone got 50/50 custody through litigation for a child less than 5 years? What strategy did you use?
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Old 01-11-2013, 04:23 PM
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This is a perfect example of why I think a person should hire YOUNG lawyers. Young lawyers are more up-to-date on case law.
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Old 01-11-2013, 04:31 PM
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Time to find a new lawyer, a young lawyer like Arabian pointed out. They are often more up to date on recent case law. Interview another lawyer and search this site... there have been some case law posted regarding 50-50
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Old 01-11-2013, 04:43 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PursuitOfHappyness View Post
Today I had a bit of a shock.

I was interviewing a lawyer with over 30 years of experience and who came highly recommended from a friend who used him.

His comment was that because I'm the father and my daughter is 3.5years, no judge in the Ottawa area will award me 50/50 till she is 6 or 7. The most I can hope is around 30% now.

I do not want to harm my daughter and I want what is best for her. Would she be harmed with a 50/50 custody at this age? She is a normal happy child and I have been told by many that she talks like a 5year old.

Has anyone got 50/50 custody through litigation for a child less than 5 years? What strategy did you use?

Get a different lawyer. First, because this lawyer obviously isn't up-to-date with the times and has their head stuck in 1960's thinking. And secondly, they either have a defeatest attitude and/or won't give their all on matters that are important to you, but they feel are not worthy.

There are members here that have shared custody of toddlers, so it is definitely something one can accomplish.

Now, there may be a bit of a hill to climb given any perceived gender biase. But if you can provide evidence that you were an involved parent and a reasonable co-parenting plan, there should be no reason to deny you the opportunity to be an equal parent.
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Old 01-11-2013, 06:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PursuitOfHappyness View Post
Today I had a bit of a shock.

I was interviewing a lawyer with over 30 years of experience and who came highly recommended from a friend who used him.

His comment was that because I'm the father and my daughter is 3.5years, no judge in the Ottawa area will award me 50/50 till she is 6 or 7. The most I can hope is around 30% now.

I do not want to harm my daughter and I want what is best for her. Would she be harmed with a 50/50 custody at this age? She is a normal happy child and I have been told by many that she talks like a 5year old.

Has anyone got 50/50 custody through litigation for a child less than 5 years? What strategy did you use?
I have seen motions before the Superior Court of Justice where 2-2-3-3 (50-50) access schedules have been ordered for 18 month old children. So, this lawyer is (a) out of date and (b) doesn't want you as a client.

Mess posted a link to an article a while back that outlined all the Jurisprudence from the Ontario Bar Association for joint custody and equal access for minor children.

The "tender years" doctrine has not been effect since the early 90s. Time to talk to a new lawyer.

Good Luck!
Tayken
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Old 01-11-2013, 07:15 PM
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Just finished a 14 day trial self represented myself.
At the start our children were 2 and 3. at trial they were 3 and 4
Both are girls and I'm the father. Mom wanted sole custody.
I had 5 calls to CAS, and an OCL recommending sole custody to mom.
I ended up with education mom medical and everything else joint.
50% one week one one week off, with a 24 hour midweek visit.
If you would like to see my order I can send it to you.
Reasons for order were given orally.

I posted a strategy that I used and it can be read here.
http://www.ottawadivorce.com/forum/f...tml#post121543

I used a really good free support group called Fathers Resource International.

And I waged peace not war.

It can be done. But it'll be the hardest thing you ever do.
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Old 01-11-2013, 08:36 PM
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Congrats on getting pretty much everything your children (and you) deserved.

Are/was there any issues on costs?

Hope you stick around, as I'm sure you have some valuable advice to offer.
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Old 01-11-2013, 08:39 PM
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Thank you all so much. I've got wind in my sails

I will not go to this lawyer. I don't have the time to do all the research to self represent so I have to get a lawyer - so its back to the drawing board.
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Old 01-11-2013, 10:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PursuitOfHappyness View Post
Today I had a bit of a shock.

I was interviewing a lawyer with over 30 years of experience and who came highly recommended from a friend who used him.

His comment was that because I'm the father and my daughter is 3.5years, no judge in the Ottawa area will award me 50/50 till she is 6 or 7. The most I can hope is around 30% now.

I do not want to harm my daughter and I want what is best for her. Would she be harmed with a 50/50 custody at this age? She is a normal happy child and I have been told by many that she talks like a 5year old.

Has anyone got 50/50 custody through litigation for a child less than 5 years? What strategy did you use?
If you want 50/50, which seems to be the case.

Find a new lawyer. One whom actually believes he/she can win.

That's more important than whether or not he/she is correct in their assumption/opinion.

Just my 2 cents.
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Old 01-11-2013, 11:32 PM
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Take some time to research a 'collabrative' Family Law firm/lawyer.

Consider the typical lawyers position is to be 'adverserial'. The very nature of the profession.

that's 4 cents now.
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