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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 11-11-2011, 01:29 PM
xerynx xerynx is offline
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Default Ex refused to attend MIP or file financial statement

I am hoping someone can shed some light on this situation, as I'm getting mixed information and am somewhat confused by all of it.

My common-law partner and I separated earlier this year, and I moved out with our toddler. At first we were both very earnest in encouraging a continuing relationship between father and daughter, but my ex slowly began to lose interest.
There were some fairly serious incidents of neglect ('forgetting' to change a diaper for 7 hours, not feeding her for 6 hours, etc). We talked about this honestly, and my ex (who is battling untreated mental illness) told me outright he felt too unstable to look after her on his own.
I was allowing access in my apartment for a while, until I became uncomfortable with that due to some privacy invasion issues (scanning my cell phone call history, rifling through papers, inspecting bedsheet, etc).

We agreed we would continue access at the Supervised Access Centre in town, until my ex was ready and able to continue his mental health treatment - something he said he planned to do. He refused to put the agreement in writing, claiming that he felt we would eventually get back together and didn't want to admit on paper that it was over. But he told me he felt it was best for our daughter and for us that he see her at the SAC.
I contacted the SAC, but he avoided their calls and they finally called me back after a month and said they were closing our file, as he didn't appear to be a willing participant and refused his interview.

At that time, he was dating someone new and had not seen our daughter or contacted me to ask how she was doing in over a month. He didn't answer the phone when I called. He was no longer paying child support (something he had done regularly since our separation) I decided it was time to file for sole custody with supervised access in court.

He did not attend the MIP session, and called me to say he didn't plan to file an answer to the courts, and felt the financial statement "violated his privacy rights" and did not intend to file that either. He said I should be okay with this because he would simply "do whatever I asked him to" in terms of support and access. He also announced that he was planning to move to Alberta in a little over a month with his new girlfriend, and wanted to see his daughter just once before he left "forever". He has never expressed any interest in joint or shared custody, in fact he told me he would prefer I had sole custody.

Our first court appearance is coming up on the 24th, and I am not sure what to expect. What happens when the respondent refuses to attend the MIP, is our case going to be permanently stalled?
I am unsure whether or not he will show up to court (he may not), and if he doesn't, and hasn't responded to or filed any documents, and hasn't attended the MIP, is it likely that the judge will make a decision without him, or is his absence going to hold us up indefinetely?
If he never files a financial statement, and moves to Alberta without updatng me with his new employment information, phone number, or address, is it fairly likely I will never see another child support payment from him? I am a full-time student living on OSAP, so I'm used to being broke, but it would be nice if he would at least contribute financially, since he seems to have no intention of seeing or knowing his daughter anymore.

I'm extremely disappointed by all of this. I understand that he struggles with his mental health (it's depression and anxiety, btw) but he works full time and is carrying on a new romantic relationship - I find it hard to believe he doesn't have the capacity to be a father to his daughter. They were very close before we split (although he was never a very responsible father, they did have a relationship). This is typical behaviour for him, his immaturity and failure to take responsibility is why I left him. I wouldn't care so much if it weren't affecting my daughter this time - she won't be capable of understanding why he abandoned her for a long time (if ever). The least I can do is keep this process simple and avoid any serious conflict - I've been managing so far, but with our court date approaching I feel I've really lost control of the situation. This situation is now being led by my irrational and difficult ex, and I can't seem to get it back on track.

My concern is that this behaviour of his (refusing to comply with the mandatory court procedures like MIP and financial statements) is going to make it impossible for me to obtain legal custody or child support - or an order for supervised access. Is it possible that nothing will be legally decided, and he can one day insist that I send our daughter to Alberta to be alone with him? This frightens me to no end - I know he has substance abuse problems, and since we split up he has not been treating her well. I can't imagine he is able to look after her alone, and it would terrify me to have her be with him and so far away.

Any clarification on what will likely happen in court given the circumstances would be greatly appreciated. I am growing increasingly concerned about this, and am not sure if there is anything I can do to ease the process.
Old 11-11-2011, 03:23 PM
Marcos Marcos is offline
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@Xerynx, i don't know a lot about family law and am embarking on the same kind o of problems.

First, let me say that i think you are lucky that he is gone, you daughter will be better off forgetting him. He is not stable and will only cause her more harm than good. He is telling you he doesn't want to be a father. Its gonna be tough for you but and the money is gonna be tough, but i would save my self the stress and forget about chasing him for child support.

Get the Sole Custody order, which will easily be given to you and forget about him.

I only wish my common-law girlfriend would walk away like that, i wouldn't ask for for a penny.
Old 11-12-2011, 01:03 AM
ddol1 ddol1 is offline
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I am an outsider but I do have a strong opinion in that parents need to support thier children financially to thier ability. Here in Ontario the dreaded evil FRO stands for in this case a parent facing doing it all alone and conflict of contact with the ex spouse. You should have his sin number? If not there are ways to obtain it when the time comes (perhaps by the court order to obtain it?) ANywaay if support is warranted and the income is not reported they will impute an income to him for support purposes. Then his obligation will be court ordered and hopefully The FRO can reach him or there is a similar function in Alberta?

As far as his refusing to cooperate - it takes one to finalize a divorce. Even if you do this alone without a lawyer the duty council at your local family court house can assisst you do this right - then it is just a proceedural thing to provide the right notifications and the court will eventually decide things based on the information on hand. This would be your statements.

So it is possible to get custody, and thru the court process you get sole custody and your ex is ristricted in visitation rights and it is possible that in the process of finalizing your divorce the courts will assign a CS order - even a SS order if you are entitled. Going for the support will not take the energy away form your number one priority your child. But you have to do it as no one will do it for you.
Old 11-12-2011, 10:25 AM
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blinkandimgone blinkandimgone is offline
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Originally Posted by Marcos View Post

Its gonna be tough for you but and the money is gonna be tough, but i would save my self the stress and forget about chasing him for child support.
Bad, bad answer - do NOT take this advice.
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