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CSA and the kidnapped child

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THE CASE and the kidnapped child

Hi Guys,

hope you can help as I'm new to all of this.

My ex and I separated 2 weeks ago.
She left the family home with our 2 3/4 boy.

She now refuses to allow overnight visits, hiding behind the latest study and claiming "it's not in his best interests"

She had no such concerns on the 2 trips away for 6 nights with girlfriends over the last 6 months
Or the 2/3 nights away on several occassions with her 2 kids from previous relationship.

I took 8 weeks off when son was born, and continually took time off work to care and support (including the above trips away)

He has never show any distress when she has gone away.

I now have the CSA chasing me.  (yet to actually return their call)

She obviously has informed them on the 100% care she has, but left out she wont let me have any.
I'm prepared to have him 50% of the time and can restructure work to suit.
There are no orders, and we are waiting to attent mediation (what a slow process that is!!)

Now I could "kidnap" him back during day access, but I'd prefer not to behave like her.

Have spoken to numerous Agencies, who claim there is no gender bias, but if the roles were reversed, the cops would be kicking in my door!

Does anyone have any advice??
My guess is that she wants big $$$ as 100 percent care gives her more CS and she won't want you to reduce your income either.

Call family relationships and start the mediation process and then court if needed. You got to go through FDR first anyway. Insist on write only regarding the CSA and just keep objecting. It might not help but might buy you time.
Thanks for the input so far.

Yes she want big$$!
Alread have letter from solicitor asking for $1,000/week spousal support! AND $$10,000 up front!

She has been down this path before, so I feel like a sitting duck.

I put in 75% of assets to her 25%, but she seems to think shes going to get 80+% in property settlelement.
Been married 4 1/2 years…..
Any comments on that?

Have started the mediation process, but she won't be accomodating, I'll bet.

1000 pw in spousal support after 4 years of marriage and 80 percent of assets? I think she is a dreamer.
SM10, thanks for the support.

What she IS, I cannot print in a public forum….

Never seen a woman turn so quickly, viciously and agressively…
That is some ambit claim.

Now lad, this is what you need to do.
1. Write to her lawyer and say the following:

I am in receipt of your letter dated XXXX.

On what grounds can your client justify seeking the claim as outlined in your letter?

Write nothing else.

2. Write, fax or email the FRC and inform that your wife has taken your child and will not let you see him. You will require this evidence later.

3. Write a letter to your wife (recorded delivery) and ask to see your son, and if not, what are the reasons.
You will require this in evidence later.

Keep a diary - not an electronic one.

Be careful of an AVO set up - that will be next.

Monti

Executive Member of SRL-Resources, the Family Law People on the site (Look for the Avatars).   Be mindful what you post in the public areas. 
Yes follow Monti's advice and try to be patient as the process is long and frustrating. My guess is you might not see your son for a few months by the time you have got through the FRC process and obtained some interim care orders from the court. Make sure you keep your self calm and look after your health.

Thanks for the advice, all gratefully recieved.

Have replies to ambit claim a week ago, still no reply.

The ex continues to keep my son from having overnight stay, now I'm trying to do the right thing, but it is difficult as I do not see why she is the decider in thsi?
She continues to hide behine "not in his best interests" - there is thread about that somewhere here.

I know she has informed CSA as hey have called and left messages, but my question is, will they assess based on the fact that she is KEEPING my son hostage for CSA payment whilst there are no orders?  ie zero nights for me = maximum $$ for her.

How long does it take to file a recovery order?
do we need to have gone to mediation first for this also?
What does a recovery order typically "order"?

Thanks for the help
Whatbus is seeing his child.  He is concerned about not having overnights with the child.  He says so in this thread (see first post in this thread where he talks about kidnapping his son during his day access).

You can sort out a care pattern at mediation which is appropriate to the child's needs, and includes provisions for increasing time (including overnights).  

CS payments will change over time accordingly.
April,

thanks for trying to help.

You seem to miss that (in my case) I used to come home from work and then the child would be thrust at me with a "you take care of him" attitude.
From that time (5pm) I would play with, then feed, then bathe and dress for bed, play a lttle more, then put him to bed and read him a book until he fell asleep.

Now I do not do that.

This routine has been changed significantly and he is the worse for it.

How is this "in the best interest of the child"?
My son has gone from EVERY night overnight with me to NONE.
There is nothing about a child's parents being separated which is in the child's best interest.  Even 50/50 care means they only see each parent for half the time.  The situation is awful for the parents AND the child.  Your child now has to get used to sharing time between 2 homes.  You and your ex can work that out between you or with help.  You don't need recovery orders or court at this stage.

Can you make an appointment at a mediation centre?  They will help you work out an arrangment which transitions the child into a shared care arrangement over time.  Your child will be missing you when with mum and missing mum when with you.  The child needs to be supported to gradually learn new care patterns.  If your ex is uncooperative it will take time.  
There are no orders, and we are waiting to attent mediation (what a slow process that is!!)

Sounds like they are on the waiting lists for mediation, can takes months unfortunately. 
April,

Thanks, have started the mediation process, but as you know, it can take a long time.

Right now, he is missing me while with his mum.
Is that the right balance until we get some agreement (mediation or court)?

He isn't missing her whilst with me BECAUSE SHE WONT ALLOW IT.

Do you have any constructive suggestions to redress this imbalance?
whatbus can you get a solicitor to write her a letter addressing your concerns?, I know it will cost but it maybe a way of attempting to address the issues until you get in at mediation.
Whatbus, Are you having any time with your child at all?  If so, keep up whatever you can at present and be mindful that this situation is temporary.  Follow Frenzy's advice above, it is good.  Sometimes a legal letter can get the ball rolling.
Guys,

thanks - legal letter requesting overnights has been sent a week ago, no reply to date.

My guess this is a stalling tactic, so that once mediation fails and we finally get to court, the ex will be claiming, I've had no overnights and "won't be his best interest" now.
I did hear the word "Status Quo" used in Family law in such a way that there would be a reluctance to change what is happening now, so as not to disrupt the child…. :(

forget about tearing him out of his family home etc…..
Why do you think mediation will fail?  The last place you want to go is court.  If your ex does not attend mediation or make an effort to compromise it will not look good for her if you do need to take the next step.  This situation is temporary.  Even if you don't have any overnights for a while that will not be enough to prevent them happening in the future, provided you continue to play a role in your child's life.  This is a horrible situation, but it is temporary.  Things can get sorted, but it will take time.
thanks - legal letter requesting overnights has been sent a week ago, no reply to date.
I hope you get a reply.

It sounds like you have played a very significant role in caring for you son to date. I think this should be taken into account if it was to come before a magistrate. Hopefully your son's mother starts to be reasonable so that it doesn't come to that.

"Status Quo" is often used in determining interim orders. To ask for interim orders you need to have gone through the mediation process (or be exempt from the process) and have asked for final orders.
April,

thankyou, I guess what is coming out in my posts is the grieving of the loss of my little boy.

It is a terrible time and the ex is showing a callous disregard.

She already has flagged she will not back down from ZERO nights at mediation.
That's why I think mediation will fail.
whatbus - I would like to add that your son is old enough for shared care but due to the break up and what your ex has done you will need to ask for Interim orders that start with one night per week with day time care on other days in the week, and then increase to two nights after three months etc… You might then look at gradually moving into a fortnightly rotation after a couple more increments for example you have from Wed 3pm to Sunday 7pm week 1 and then Wed 3pm to Friday 7pm week 2. As your child starts Kindy you might like to work out a rotation that allows you to be involved in classes/pickup/dropoffs etc…In whatever you do don't rush anything and take it steady.
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