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Ask Clare Your Own Question
Clare
Clare, Family Solicitor
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 34234
Experience:  I have been a solicitor in High Street Practise since 1985 and have specialised in Family Law for the last 10 years
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HelloI currently have contact with my daughter after fighting

Customer Question

Hello

I currently have contact with my daughter after fighting through the courts for 3 years. My daughter is 5 and of mixed heritage. My daughter Tamara see's me her father every other weekend and one overnight in the week in addition to half of the school holidays as i'm a school teacher.
My daughter has a younger half-sibling who's father also had to go through the court process.
I live 45 miles away and this was the reason given to me as to why my daughter couldn't see her father as much.
I am moving into with 20 miles of my daughters school of which I am heavily involved in all aspects of her life. Her mother has described me as being a fantastic father, but doesn't offer anytime apart from what is in the court order.
My daughter unfortuneatly as I predicted is experiencing problems with school attendance and an identity issue as her school is in a prodominately white area and her dual heritage isn't promoted.
When I move I will be applying to have equal or more at the very least contact with my daughter. What are the chances?

Thanks

XXXXX XXXXX
Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  Clare replied 4 years ago.
Hi
Thank you for your question
I shall do my best to assist you but I need some further information first.
At present what is the exact weekend contact - Friday to Sunday or Friday to Monday?
What changes to the pattern will you be requesting?
Claire
Customer: replied 4 years ago.


friday - sunday 1 week.


friday - monday 3 week.


overnight thursday 4


visit thursday 2 week.


 


i will be proposing every other weekend for the weekends Tamara doesn't see me then 2 nights in the week.


At present Tamara goes 8 days without seeing her father, I can't see how this benefits Tamara.


 


Thankyou

Expert:  Clare replied 4 years ago.
Hi
I am a little confused - does she not see you one night in the week every week?
Claire
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Sorry


 


I'll try and explain; week 1 friday to monday 3 nights - i pick tamara up from school on friday and drop her to school on Monday.


I then see Tamara just for a visit the following Thursday 15:10 - 18:00.


8 days later I have Tamara Friday to Sunday 2 nights.


Then the following Thursday pick up from school and drop of to school friday morning. 1 night.


 


Thanks


 


Mark

Customer: replied 4 years ago.

I see Tamara 1 night a week every week.


 

Expert:  Clare replied 4 years ago.
Hi
Thank you for that I think I am clear on it now.
You will need to try and discuss matters with her mother using Family mediation (www.familymediationhelpline.co.uk) to negotiate a new pattern of contact now that you are nearer
However it is not sensible to go straight for a request for equal shared care
This will but your ex's back up and will make the negotiations immmediatly antagonistic
One option could be Friday to Monday on alternate weekends plus one night a week (five nights out of 14)
This is a more realistic first request than two nights a week and gives you a stepping stone for the future to increase it to two nights a week and make it a fully shared care arrangement
I hope that this is of assistance - but do please ask for further details if you need them
Claire
Customer: replied 4 years ago.


Thank you for your reply.


I have tried mediation before. My ex pertner is not interested in allowing our daughter any extra time with her father. This is compounded by her actions from her latest relationship which has gone the same way.


She knows that the law favours her enormously and uses it.


My understanding from your answers/advice which I appreciate is that even if I lived next door Tamara would have to make do with seeing her father only once a week.


It's quite obvious that Tamara as all children requires a balanced up-bringing. Tamara being of mixed heritage, living in trhe area that she does and already displaying identity and attendance issues at school.


I will try the mediation but my ex will not agree to anything I have had to fight tooth and nail just to achieve the bare minimum.


Tamara needs balance in her life and that is from both mother and father. Her grandmother has endorsed the BNP which I feel is a huge worry. How can Tamara grow with these sorts of attitudes surrounding her.


I will take your advice and try. Last time I went to court, my staement was as non-offensive as I could 've made it. Yet my ex's just lied and attacked. The courts as I have unfortuneatly found out don't really care about fathers. There mind was made up. I will always try and put on a brave face. But the law is incredibly one sided.


Thanks


 


Mark

Expert:  Clare replied 4 years ago.
Hi
If mediation fails then Court will be the only option
If you go in with this reasonable request - alternate FULL weekends and one night a week then you are likely to be successful in court as it a reasonable request and balanced for your daughter.
Your ex's strongest card is the fact that there is a younger child and the children need to spend time together so finding out more about the pattern of contact that the other father has could be useful
Claire
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Hi


 


Tamara's 1/2 siblings father only see's her father 1 a week although he lives 3 minutes away.


From what you have advised me, the law puts 1/2 siblings relationships in front of fathers relationship?


The children will have every other weekend together, which is deemed fine for her father, but not for 1/2 siblings?


I will speak to the other father and get the exact details of his contact. I will look at patterns. Eventually it would be easier if we had shared care.


 


Thanks


 


 


Mark

Expert:  Clare replied 4 years ago.
Hi
No the sibling does not have more rights - but it would be helpful to your case to dovetail the arrangements so that that argument is not available to her
Claire