Author Topic: Custody drama  (Read 2700 times)

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CrazyDaze

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Custody drama
« on: August 18, 2010, 01:47:49 PM »
We went to court yesterday afternnoon where we were told that the custody arrangement was to return to 50/50. I could go into looong boring details but to keep it from being a novel I'll refrain. Anyhow the plan was to have the child exchange take place at 6pm. We got home around 345pm and told Ali she was going to have to return to Eric's house at 6pm and resume a 50/50 arrangement. She started saying she's not going back and he's going to have to have the cops drag her out. We talked her down and she said she'd go but I'll see you in a day or two however long it takes to walk back here. I told her she needs to tell her dad this which she turned into telling him she doesn't want to live with him anymore and why can't he just let her live where she's happiest and wants to live. He of course only said simply your not in charge and you go where the court orders you to go.

Fast forward to 3am and the wife wakes up suddenly and asks for her phone. I find it on the dresser and we go back to sleep. 312am call from the highway patrol. They found Ali walking on a freeway off-ramp one exit away from ours. She tells the HP whats going on and he drops her off at our house. We call the db and tell him what's happened and he starts with that's impossible because he's been up all night and she's there. We say that's your view but she's here and safe. 335am he calls back very excited now and says he's coming to get her and can't understand why we didn't just have the HP take her back to his house. If we were good parents we would've driven her back ourselves lecturing her on the way about how unsafe it was to do and she can't run away from her problems. I tell him he needs to reflect on why his daughter has chosen to call him by his first name for over two years, file physical abuse charges (which have been dropped due to lack of evidence, pictures aparently weren't enough :mad2:) and now leave his house at 1130pm (according to her) and risk walking back to our house at such a late hour.

He shows up and calls to inform us the cops are on the way and it'd be best if we just take her out there and send her back with him. I basically told him she doesn't want to live with you anymore and you need to accept it and after sending her home with you just hours earlier she was found walking down the freeway. I then tell Ali she needs to talk with her dad so that he understands how she feels. She tells him she doesn't love him and doesn't think of them as her family just a jail sentence since she is "court ordered" to live with them. While they are talking the police show up. I tell Ali to stay inside. He comes to the door with the police behind him and asks me to bring Ali out and tell her she needs to go with him. I tell him all I can do is ask her to go but I'm not going to physically carry her out there. The police step in and ask to speak with Ali. I call her to the door and she tells them that they are going to have to physically put her in his car and that at first chance will just run away again. She'd rather live on the streets than at his house.

Now am I bad for telling her to stand up to her bio and reject court orders? I want her to have respect for authority but at the same time when she's telling everyone that she doesn't want to live with him, she's been abused both verbally and recently physically and no one listens for reasons I don't understand. I honestly don't feel like a bad guy I just am not sure what to think. Are there any laws that I'm breaking by backing her and not forcing her to follow court orders?

Offline Scott H.

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Re: Custody drama
« Reply #1 on: August 18, 2010, 01:56:21 PM »
I can't remember, how old is she? When the custody hearing was going on (again) was her voice heard?


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Offline keetedw

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Re: Custody drama
« Reply #2 on: August 18, 2010, 04:04:59 PM »
I think it will depend SLIGHTLY on age, but yes, you're absolutely breaking the law by disobeying court orders.

That being said, I think, beyond doubt you're doing the right thing.  Did the cops take your daughter out of the house and physically deliver her to her bio?  I think this is that situation that no one wants to really deal with.  Document all of this, dates, times, etc.  Ask for a copy of the police report since it'll show the decision the cops made (especially if they refused to get your daughter).

Either way, I'm not sure it'll change the court order (judges hate having to do anything but 50/50 custody, anymore), but the more evidence you have, the better it'll be in the end.  You'll have to file for a change to the custody and include the police report(s).  Maybe that'll be enough.
 

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nightstorm56

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Re: Custody drama
« Reply #3 on: August 18, 2010, 04:21:02 PM »
I know here in Utah, at the age of 12, the child can tell the courts that they no longer wish to see their other parent and that they wish to stay with the parent that they want to stay with.

Not following the court order is against the law, but from the sounds of it, you were not the one breaking the court order, you were merely the receiver of the child when the police brought her somewhere safe. Telling her to stand up for herself is a good step in the right direction by showing her that she CAN stand up for herself, not by disobeying court orders. Just explain that there are certain situations where things should be questioned, such as an abusive sperm donor that she's forced to live with partially. Also explain that there are sometimes consequences for actions, such as if she continually does this, he may be able to use it in court, saying that "the other parents" are cooercing(?) her into walking all the way out there to see "the other parents", even though you didn't/haven't been.

My suggestion is to check local custody laws and see if there's something about how Utah has the age thing, and possibly getting something like that arranged.

Offline Big daddy Eis

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Re: Custody drama
« Reply #4 on: August 18, 2010, 04:22:53 PM »
wash she not old enough, or is it to late for her to decide where she wants to live. 

CrazyDaze

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Re: Custody drama
« Reply #5 on: August 18, 2010, 05:23:26 PM »
Thank you all for your input. It's nice to get other perspectives to help me keep mine.

Ali is 14 and with her birthday coming up in October. A previous judge has stated that minors don't have to be listened to because they are just that "minors". If a judge placed a minor in a house they wanted to live in and then after a few months the minor decides they don't like that house then you'd be back in court wasting more time to make adjustments. The current judge we're in front of seems different but we'll have to see how this plays out now. The wife just called me and said we have court on Friday at 830a.

Ali has had her chance when she was 9 to talk but remarkably they went on an all out vacation fun time the month leading up to the trial. So when asked who she wanted to live with and why. She said I want to live with my mom because I love her but still see my dad because we have fun together. Of course ever since he got 50/50 custody their vacations consist of a weekend camping while she's there and going all over the place when she's not, according to her sisters.

Offline keetedw

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Re: Custody drama
« Reply #6 on: August 18, 2010, 05:29:02 PM »
It's a valid concern by the judge.  Kids to change their mind pretty often.  But the fact that she's pointing out abuse and is willing to take the risk to walk across town to your house HAS to be noticed by the judge.

Also, considering she's just 2 years from emancipation anyway, it makes sense that she be taken at least a little more serious.

If you have an attorney, talk to them about the possibility of her submitting an affidavit or some other official record to the courts about where she wants to live.  I don't know if it'll help or if it's even possible since she's a minor, but it certainly can't hurt to ask.
 

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Offline Aftrthought051

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Re: Custody drama
« Reply #7 on: August 18, 2010, 11:55:00 PM »
I'm in LA mind you, but laws are basically the same.  I see people disobey court orders all the time and nothing really happens.  And those ppl just disobey them for spite.  This is for your daughter's safety.  Get the original police report the police wrote for finding your daughter on the freeway and the conversation they had w/ her and their investigation should all be in the report.  The later is good as well when the cops show up, but the first one is the one to have.  No cop can physically take a child from one parent to give to another unless they have a court order in hand and it specifically states for "police to take custody of said child and turn over to" so and so.  7+ yrs of law enforement, I've never seen such a letter.  Just ppl waving custody papers.

Don't encourage her to disobey court orders, but just to stand up and be hear.  A judge will listen to a 14 yr old.  Some do go as young as 12, but most feel 14 is the age where their opinion should be heard.  As long as there is no history of her going back and forth on who she wants to live w/, you should be OK.  Keep the documentation on everything that takes place and get your daughter heard in court.  She may have left to come to your house, but that is irresponsible of him to have let her get out of the house and deny it when he gets a call that his child is gone.  Best of luck.

 



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