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50/50 Custody

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  • 50/50 Custody

    My ex and I have been separated for over a year, It was amicable in the beginning but has since gotten very petty and confrontational. I was a shift worker (12 hr rotating) when we separated. Our custody schedule revolved around my work schedule. In essence I had the children ever day that I was off. Now the intent was that I would eventually get day shifts (Mon - Fri) and that we would begin week about custody, however my ex decided to take me to court for CS and won a judgement of $600 a month. The judge didn't look at the times the children were with each of us he simply made a judgement based on.....well I'm not really sure what to be honest. Since I've gone to days my ex will not go week about, I have taken a pretty hefty pay cut to go to days......what can I do??? I am financially strapped and feeling rather defeated. The $600 will force me to sell my house and my vehicle if it keeps please!!!!

    I should mention that there are no orders of custody or signed agreements either.
    Last edited by fairnessrules; 11-12-2012, 10:42 AM. Reason: forgot something.

  • #2
    How often are you seeing your children? Do you have any emails or txt messages about the plan you and your ex made for when you would work day shifts? I would recommend for startes to make sure that all communication is done through email or txt if possible, and invest in an audio recorder for when you must speak directly to your ex.


    • #3
      I have texts and emails regarding her intent and agreement to switch to week about with the kids. Currently I have the children over 40% of the time. Trouble is that the judge that issued the support order didn't make a ruling on wether or not it was shared custody. That was the original intent but it seems gredd has gotten the better of her.

      Naturally I wouldn't have purchased a house and made all the other plans I have if I was not under that impression.


      • #4
        So was the support order made at a case conference I am guessing? Was she disputing the fact that you currently see your children more then 40% of the time?


        • #5
          The story is very long and arduous. I'll PM you the details.


          • #6
            Don't worry about the child support yet. The first thing you have to do is establish the appropriate custody arrangements. If you have 50-50, the CS will follow. If you lose the custody war, nobody will care if you are too broke to pay CS, you will have to pay it anyway.

            Without an agreement, I would immediately start seeing the kids 50% of the time. Give your ex a schedule, and tell her that if she doesn't like it, she can feel free to propose an alternate schedule of her liking that gives you 50% of the time.


            • #7
              Originally posted by fairnessrules View Post
              The story is very long and arduous. I'll PM you the details.
              Not to take anything away with the advice/help fireweb can provide, but posting more details here may get you more advice/answers. They are many knowledgeable people here, that have gone through what you are.

              Leave out personal details (names and such) but substitute with with something similar... like if you have a son that is 7, say S7, instead of his name.


              • #8
                Can I unilaterally just start doing week about custody...even though she has refused???


                • #9
                  Without an agreement or order in place, you have defacto 50-50 custody. She is not allowed to play gate keeper.

                  Do you have a lawyer?


                  • #10
                    I had a lawyer for the "so called" settlement conference. I gave everything away she took it and wouldn't settle on custody. Defacto 50-50???

                    I am currently in a very poor position as I can't afford a lawyer.


                    • #11
                      More of the story:

                      When my ex and I separated we began the schedule I spoke of. It saw me with the kids around 43% of the time. It turned into more than that during the summer simply because she would drop the kids off to me in the morning rather than a day care.

                      By the child support calculator I was to pay her $150 per month in the beginning (our salaries are rather close) She stated that she wouldn't be able to live on that so I offered $350 for a short time until she could get her affairs in order. I also let her keep the baby bonus and the harper hundred (universal childcare benefit)

                      Trouble occurred for me when I wanted to reduce the payment back to $150....she refused. I was running very thin money wise each month so I stopped paying. She took me to court and filed a motion for support. That was where the $600 came from. The judge simply acknowledged that there was a real issue as to whether or not it was shared custody but her didn't rule on it. Now I'm stuck and I'm back to self representing because I can't afford a lawyer.


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