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How Far Away Can I Move?

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Can anyone please advise if there is a distance restriction on how far away I can move from my baby's father?  He chose to leave us when she was an infant and we presently live about 70klms apart.  I would like to undertake a course for a year which would see us living approximately 300klms apart.  Does my ex have the right to stop me from moving and doing the course? 
My children's father moved away from the area we lived in. I am being made to travel to enable him to see the chilren. It is pathetic.
I have spoken to legal aid about this difficulties this is putting on my family, especially financially and physically and I was told that if it caused too much difficulty that the court would order ME to move the children closer to the father even thought he was the one who moved away from us.
So as far as I have been told. The fatehr can do anything he likes, move to where ever he wants and the mother basically has to foot the bill to ensure the children see their father !!
Like I read in another post . . . there seems to be NO justice in family law at the moment !!
I found Legal Aid hopeless (sorry to the helpful Legal Aid people).  They seemed to just take the easy way out and tell me to do everything to please my ex, with no consideration to how it would affect me, my older child, or my baby.  They even told me that I would have to justify why I considered my ex taking cocaine whilst looking after his children was a problem!  It's insane.  I have been bullied and harrassed and their is NO way the changes to the system are about "the best interests of the child."  It's about what the father wants, the father gets.  I was even told I would have to express so my ex could have her.  So he walks away from all the burden and hardship, to be a part-time dad on his terms and uses our baby daughter for attention from his peers and to make himself feel warm and fuzzy when he is feeling insecure after his drunken socialising.  Ah yes, that's in the best interests of the child, for sure.  And he tells me I have to drive down to him for him to see her.  She doesn't know or care who he is, not yet anyway, and is a perfectly happy little baby.  So WHY do we have to do it?  The legal profession is full of narcissists that cater for this type of narcissistic thinking!
Sorry if I wasn't very helpful !! I'm just fed up with all this "Best Interests" of the children at them moment ! My children miss out on so much of their childhood because of the amount of time they are spending travelling to see a man they don't want to spend time with because all he does is tell them awful things about me and my family (our magistrate seemsed to forget about putting the no denigrating bit on our orders) . . . We have to show significant reasons for wanting any type of change, which is fine, but it does seem disproportionately unfair when the fathers seem to be the ones getting off light !!
The Legal Aid solicitors I have spoken to have been completely uncaring. I spoke to one who told me that I had to make sure I had enough money to put fuel in the car to travel the 8 hours to enable my children to see their father, She said if I didn't do this the court would take the children off me (there are NO complaints about my mothering ability of the situation my children are living in) and give them to their father. So I asked how could I make the decision between feeding my children,putting clothes on their back paying the electircity bill OR putting fuel in my car (or getting in the car knowing full well I just didn't have enough fuel and running out in the middle of nowhere). I was told there was no decision to make that I simply had to do it and there were NO excuses !!
But yes, you do have to go back to court if you want to move the kids a significant distance away from where you are living because I don't think we're allowed to make your own life choices once you have court orders. But just be prepared to have to foot the bill for the travel for your children to see their father if he so wishes :)
Contents removed at request of poster.

Last edit: by Artemis

I'm so sorry :( Things must be tough for you !

I instigated court proceedings. Mainly because I wanted my ex to see his kids and he had told me that if he got them from me he would take them. So I went to our local court and we negotiated consent orders with the help of solicitors (unfortunately he is very hostile and is very difficult to communicate with). This saw me drive all the way to drop the kids with him for 2 day visits (sat and sun) each fortnight, only day visits because his accommodation was not suitable. It was very difficult and I did it because I wanted him to see the kids. Eventually this became too difficult and he wouldn't agreee to changint he orders so we had to go back to court. The magistrate then made him have supervised visits (which he blames me for) and then ended up having a hearing. It was very long and very expensive and we still have so many issues. If you can avoid it do so !!!

I hope it all works out for you !! It is a hard position to be in and it truely does not seem, in my experience, that the courts (possibly just some magistrates) do not take into account the financial or emotional hardship these orders they are making have on the "lives with" parent !!
There seems to be some unhelpful and unproductive comment through this. I am particularly concerned about this.

 
I'm just fed up with all this "Best Interests" of the children at them moment !
It is beyond me how to respond to this. Perhaps you should mention this to the family report writer or judge to make your position clear.


Does my ex have the right to stop me from moving and doing the course?
As to your initial question, if you would like it answered, as it seems rhetorical, the answer is off course no. Where you choose to live can not be determined by another. All you need to do is ensure any orders, regarding children matters are adhered to. If you choose to move then obviously the burden will be on you. Much the same as if he were to move 300km away, he would have the burden of doing so.

"When there is no enemy within, the enemies outside can not hurt you"

Executive of SRL-Resources
When I was talking to a Legal Aid Solicitor about the issues/difficulties I am having with travelling such long distances I was told that the magistrate COULDN'T tell me where to live BUT he could tell me where the CHILDREN HAD to live.
I admit that I do not know much about "legal stuff", which is why I consulted a solicitor.
I explained about how my ex-husband had moved a large distance away from where we resided and that I was/am having difficulty in meeting the costs associated with the large amount of travel I had been ordered to undertake (even though I did not move). I was told that if I could not comply with with orders because of financial (or any other reasons) that the most likely outcome would be the magistrate ordering that the children had to live within a certain distance of their father. And yes I was told that even if I had a firm job, owned my home etc etc that I would basically just have to move.
So in effect I was told, YES the magistrate can tell me where to live because he could determine where the children had to live.
I think this would be a terrible course of justice !! Maybe this is the wrong information but it came from a fully qualified legal professional and who am I to doubt or disbelieve this information . . .

And I just would like to clear up by what I meant by being "fed up" with the so called "best interests" of the children. I merely meant that I have seen so many examples of the children's best interests not being really taken into account when orders have been handed down. I have read about children being made to 'spend time with' parents that have mental issues, drug and alcohol issues and violence issues, children being stopped from participating in community/social/sporting events because they are travelling such long distances on very regular occasions, e.g., each fortnight. I am concerned for not only my own children but the multitudes of others who are missing out on their childhood ! As a mother this concerns me terribly.

And as to making any position clear to a family report writer . . . I do not see the point of doing this ? Maybe my situation was vastly different from many other situations but I cannot see why we actually had a family report done in the first place. Our family report came out quite damning towards my ex-husband and asked for numerous things to be done before he should be allowed to have unsupervised access to our children. This was great, I thought that this message would get through to the magistrate ! I made my position clear, I wanted the cildren to have a relationship with their father but I wanted them safe, this was completely in-line with the report. In the hearing the magistrate basically dismissed the report saying he didn't believe the contents. He said that the Family Consultant did not have the qualifications to say anything about what happens and that he would not go any further with any of the recommendations of the report. I was completely confused by this as this was a consultant who the court employs regularly for these reports and who had much experience and was highly qualified. It was all very strange and all VERY unfair on the children that were/are involved.
Thank you for your response regarding moving temporarily. The question was not rhetorical.

Last edit: by MikeT

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