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  • A couple questions about motion to change.

    Currently my daughter is 6 years old. We have a court agreement in place since 2005 which timesharing is Tues & Thurs from after work until 7pm and every other weekend with me (Father).

    For the last 3 years my daughter has been with me Tues & Thurs overnights and every other weekend with Sunday night returns at 7pm.

    For the past 3 months my x has been complaining about my daughter having to get up earlier for school while at my place. (30 minutes earlier then at her place).

    I moved out of the city (ottawa) last year with my fiance of 5 years and have a new daughter age 1.

    Last month my x took away my overnights during the week due to the fact of the earlier wake up time. This lasted one night.

    My x has now taken away overnights again due to recent circumstances which follow:

    My x called my daughter and my daughter was in a giggly mood. I was downstairs and gave the phone to my daughter which was upstairs with my fiance playing Wii. My daughter was laughing and being silly and just distracted. My x claims that it was due to my fiance.

    A few days later my fiance was getting my daughter ready for school (she works 5 minutes away and drives her as it's more convient) My daughter was in a slow pace mood and not listening which resulted in time being wasted and my fiance going to be late. My daughter also wanted to wear dirty cloths and my fiance had to say no.

    That night my x calls me stating that my fiance shouldn't be displining her nor getting her ready for school nor driving her to school and that she's mentally and verbally abusing my daughter (completly false).

    She then writes me a big long email stating that because of this, abuse and other false accusations she will be taking away overnights unless I drive my daughter to school.

    She thens blocks all my emails so I can't respond and tells me because my fiance drove her the next day that no overnights are now in place as stated in the original agreement. I inform her (via email which is blocked and text messages) that I can no longer do the 3 hour vist because I work later now and it'd only give me 2 hours and I'm not going to pick up my daughter and goto a resturaunt twice a week as I can't make it home and back in this time.

    What can I do? How much will it cost to get this MOC to reflect the last 3 years. Also, should I just go for the status quo of the last 3 years or should I press for an alternate arrangment at the same time (which I was trying to get her to agree to). I was looking to include sunday overnights and also move the tues to wed & thurs so I can have two consecative days.

    This also leeds to how is the 40%+ calculated... if I have to go back to court I'd like to address as many issues as possible. Do I have any ground do reduce CS?

  • #2
    Your ex is just trying to stir you up. Do not get into replying to her emails with anything but straight to the point reply to issues relating to your child. Always be polite in your emails and discussions with her.

    She has no rights to arbitrarily stop your access unless there are serious issues relating to safety for your child. There is nothing wrong with your fiance taking your child to school, and once you are married, then she has the same rights as you do to look after your child in your time.

    How does she block you emails?

    If you do discuss anything to your ex in regards to the access problems, I would make it very short and to the point. Something such as " I will be continuing with my access as per our order. If you disagree, you are free to take the issue to court. If you stop my access, I will make an immediate application to ensure access."

    Your ex is jealous, and is using your child to try to control the situation. A very simple affidavit explaining the current problems will let the judge see the problem, and will set your ex straight, and if the problem continues, she may find she will be the access parent.

    You can do all the legal stuff yourself. The 40% is usually based on the number of overnight visits.

    My recommendation for going to court is to keep your issues a short as possible in your affidavit. You will have more luck going to court several times to deal with several different issues then you would trying to have all the problems resolved at once. From my experience, judges do not have much time to deal with many different problems at once, and it is easier to deal with issues one at a time.


    • #3
      Good advice!


      • #4
        I agree with rwm1273 -- excellent advice.

        Keep access and child support issues separate. They are two different matters. Don't change child support just because she's messing with access.


        • #5
          Thanks for the advice.

          She's blocking email with her work and hotmail. (either she has it going to junk or she just claims she's not getting it so she doesn't have to respond)

          You mentioned that once we are married my fiance has the same rights as I do while my child is in my care. Is this shown anywhere? Also considering we're common law - does this count?

          Also, in terms of my access... right now it'd be almost impossible to continue my access as per the court order for Tuesday and Thursdays. As it says I have to have her back by 7. I can't make it to my home and back to hers in this timeframe and i really can't afford to take her to dinner twice a week (plus I still only have an hour). What reprocussions can occur if I decline to pick her up on tues & thurs if overnights are taken away?

          Overnights have been happening for 3+ years and my whole schedule and life have changed because of it. (we moved to where we are because we now have/had overnights during the week).

          I can't get legal aid and I really can't afford a lawyer without help from parents (which already helped me out $20k for the intial custdoy dispute). I've looked at some of the forms and although some parts are straight forward, I'm a little overwhelmed. Also the fact that she's going to throw bogus abuse claims into the mix regarding my fiance I'm not sure how far this will go.
          Last edited by CatvsLion; 10-19-2010, 10:07 AM. Reason: spelling


          • #6
            In all honesty - your looking at an uphill battle. If you really want to push it and get into a pissing match with your ex then she will piss right back.

            There are two things here on her side. A separation agreement she can fall back on and the status quo that she can fall back on. Both of which you do not want to do.

            So - you either find a way to work with her - or your going to have to spend a hell of a lot of money and time trying to fight her.

            My advice - do not antagonize her. You will gain more from showing her that you are the one that wants to work with her to make this work for both you, her and your daughter. Try to keep your fiance out of it as much as possible.


            • #7
              The status quo is currently in my favour though... today being the first day that I would not get overnights.. and I'm still seeking council on weather or not I should pick my daughter up for an hour dinner or as you say start a pissing match and tell her I can't possibly do this 3 year old arrangment under the new circumstances. Even though I'd would miss my daughter terribly and my daughter won't see her sister for 11 days regardless. (which also impacts my youngest daughter).

              My x seems to rely alot on what my daughter says even though I believe she coaches her alot, I'm sure if my daughter doesn't see me and my family for a few days she'll let her mother know. Also it would impact my x's free time she usually gets on these days.

              This is unfortunate as it puts my daughter in the middle. My only other option is basically to pick my daughter up and immediately drop her off to her mothers just so I can see her for 15 minutes, that or she gets fast food twice a week until/if this goes back to overnights again. But again then my x knows I'm exceptable to do these hour visits during the week and won't change them.


              • #8
                Pick your daughter up, bring a picnic lunch or maybe just some snack type foods and go to the library. Kids love the one on one time and love it when you read to them.

                Continue seeing her even if it is just for 1 hour, find somewhere that you can take her, it doesn't have to involve fast food. A child of her age probably doesn't eat much. When my kids were that age, the grocery store was a great place for a quick meal. We would get some fresh buns, maybe some sandwich meat a juice box some yogurt and go the park. Be creative, she just wants to see you.


                • #9
                  It really annoys me that your ex thinks she has the right, the power, the authority, the GALL to say you can do this, or you can do that, or, I will allow this, or I will allow that. Who died and made her GOD!

                  Sorry - not much help - I know ....

                  So - Picnic is a GREAT idea! Library too!

                  I'm just not sure that it will solve anything - the status quo has been established and regardless of the Court Order - you should be able to maintain the status quo.

                  Has your ex always had issues regarding your fiance, have they escalated since the new baby? Has your ex been waiting for school to start to have something to complain about? What brought this on? Got to be something other than one difficult phone call and a difficult morning routine gone bad.

                  Have you tried telling her that you WILL BE KEEPING your daughter overnight? What could she do?


                  • #10
                    I was also going to suggest bringing a packed dinner for you to share somewhere, but I see that's been mentioned already. There are also fast food places that are not as unhealthy as others. Make it a Tuesday 'date' night to explore a different option with your daughter each week? Whatever you decide, you will come across as a dad who is continuing to do his best to be a good parent no matter what the other parent is doing.

                    Also, have you considered making arrangements at your work, if possible, to leave a bit earlier on Tuesdays and Thursdays? Maybe work through your lunch, arrive earlier, or make up the time other days in the week if your job has any flexibility. You haven't mentioned what time pickup is, but that could give you more time with your daughter. If the court order specifies "after work" why shouldn't that be you picking her up at school if you get off work before that? Just definitely don't give up the evenings! Exercise every single bit of your court order, as that's the part she can't take away, and you show her that you will not be manipulated into less time, and shows a court just how much effort you are putting into being a good parent.

                    As your daughter gets older, a later return time than 7pm may also be an option. Has her bedtime never changed in three years? You might compromise with your ex to have her back by 8pm until you can arrange to have the custody access agreement updated.

                    I know your ex is being unreasonable, and it will reflect badly on her when you get to court, especially if you've made reasonable offers that she has ignored. So present some! Try to be collaborative with her even if you don't expect any reciprocation, just so you can show you tried. I would present several options such as those already mentioned (Tuesday and Thursday overnights or Wednesday and Thursday overnights, etc) and suggest she pick the one she likes or suggest reasonable alternatives for you to consider. If she won't, when you get to court things will be in your favour. For a child to see her father for more time per week is of far more benefit than not having to get up half an hour early a couple of times a week. I imagine a judge would see that even if your ex can't or won't.


                    • #11
                      All above is good advice.

                      So what if she doesn't open or even receive your emails. When it comes to court, you have to show that you offered her options. If she doesn't respond, that is almost as bad as saying no.

                      Do you have emails from her from the same email address you are sending your offers to? Does the email program you use have an option that notifies you when the emails is opened by the recipient? As long as you can PROVE that you are being cooperative and trying to find a schedule that works it is going to help.

                      I think you really need to consider getting some legal advice on this one. Hopefully things will blow over and she will not deny you the overnights, but if she does you have a lot to lose (and so does your daughter). You have SQ on your side.

                      Maybe she realized that with these overnights it puts you over to the 40% and you should only be paying offset CS. Could this be her reasoning for no more overnights?


                      • #12
                        Registered mail may have advantages... very least, demonstrates, attempts were made for service to no avail.


                        • #13
                          I agree with the above postings. Even though your current agreement states Tues & Thurs until 7 pm, you have been taking your daughter for over nights...and for the past three years! A judge will look at this and will say that is status quo. Even though you have an agreement, you and your ex can make changes to that agreement as long as it is both agreed upon. If this change has been happening for three years, and now she decides to come up with stories of abuse. The judges is going to ask her to show strict proof thereof. However, as said above, whatever you do, do not give up those few hrs you are entitled to on Tues & Thurs evenings with your daughter. The judge will think that no matter what obstacle you are thrown, that your access with your daughter is number one, no matter how little time that is.

                          You were given some pretty good ideas to keep your visits out of the fast food returants, try to be creative. Can your fiance meet you whereever you go with you new daughter, that way it is shown that you are still trying to keep your family status quo. It will show the judge you are trying to keep some consistancy for your first daughter as well as your second.

                          If she is blocking your emails, try writing a letter. There are ways to trace the pick up of the letter just ask at the post office. But also as said above keep brief and to the point, no back and forth nit hard as that may be, trust me I know all to well. Judges don't like when one parent blocks the communication of the other, especially when it comes to access and visitation. It will show that you are still trying work things out and that it is your ex who is the one being difficult.

                          Also, the judge will probally change your current arrangement to what you have been doing for the last three years. In your Affidavit use the fact everything was working out fine until this current accusation. Use the fact that you had to move to make sure the needs of your daughter were met. Not sure of your circumstances, but if you are like us, your probally had to move farther out of the city so that you could find something you could afford and that would fit the accomodations needed for your growing family. This should all be noted in your Affidavit.

                          With regards to worring about the court costs and such, have you though about doing this your self. It really is not that hard. All the documents are located on the web in either word format or adobe. There is also the flic office, fill out all of the information that you think you need and bring it to the FLIC office for a look over. They will tell you if you are on the right track, as well depending on you who get, well give actual quotes and such to added to the affidavit. Word of advise if you are doing this on your own, judges like things to be typed and times new Roman, 12pt font. Make sure you number your points and keep exactly like that, just type out the points. If you are using past emails, letters or other people's accounts ensure that they are commisioned and sworn. You may have to pay for this process, if you are having people write letter for you, see if they can download the Affidavit form from the web, and ask if they will take it and have it notirized/commissioned.

                          Good Luck


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