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Joint Parental Responsibility

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I am aware that for all long term things I need to consult with my children's father.   Am I correct in thinking that I need to discuss with him what high school our children will be going to and also whether or not our oldest son is allowed to have braces as suggested by his dentist.     My ex does not see our children and refuses to reply to any emails that I send him (it is court ordered that our only means of communication is email).  So I am assuming that I cant make these decisions without him.  What do I do if he refuses to reply to me.  I surely can not keep going back to court for each of these problems as they arise.  Considering we have 4 children they will arise often.  I have tried to do mediation through the family relationship centre but he did not agree to do it.   Just wondering if anyone has similar problems??
Mumof4,
           perhaps if you worded a letter/email in a way that he has the right to provide input, but that without input it is taken as his acceptance of the matter, you would then be following the orders.

e.g.

Dear X, the dentist has recommended braces for A, please provide your views with regard to this matter. In the absence of you providing input within 1 month, it will be taken as your agreement to the treatment being undertaken.
You may want to discuss with a lawyer, getting sole responsibility - use the fact he does not reply, or use his rights and that it could one day become a huge concern.
You cannot raise your children properly if any decision you make could, at any time be changed or, prevented from happening because he decides to respond or respond late. Also there are things which have to have decisions made quickly - like high schools, they usually have a limited enrolment period, especially if your child would be attending from outside the schools catchment area.
I am in a similar position. I have recently had to start corresponding with the father via email - It is currently court ordered NO CONTACT at all due to DVO, however I could not follow that and  be a good parent. (The children are named persons on the order, but do attend when we have written arrangements in place - currently no court orders regarding parenting)
I am pursuing the sole responsibility in court, and I have in writing that he agrees to my having right of final decision if we cannot reach a decision (with a clause that we have to attend a mediation on the subject before we are deemed to not agree).
Having sole responsibility would not stop my ex (or yours) from making his thoughts known, and doesnt preclude me from taking into consideration his thoughts - it just means that I am responsible for making the decision in the end - the same as it was during the marriage anyway.
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