My sister was asked to leave her partner's home when they split up and in fear that an incident might arise, I called the police. The police suggested she did just that. That she leave and come back and collect her daughter when she was newly settled. In her naivety my sister left unaware she was within her rights to remain. The father of my sister's daughter therefore effectively threw my sister out and self-appointed himself main carer against her will (and pending the outcome of a residence-order which we will apply for). He is being inconsiderate and uncooperative about contact. A few issues here: Parents have equal rights so why can't caring for the child be shared pending an order? My sister was the main carer, she's never had a job, her job was caring for her daughter and being denied access to the child is killing her and no doubt affecting the child who is 2.8 months old. She was tricked into this situation by a manipulative controlling man. She would never have left the house had she known she could have stayed. A complaint with the IPCC has been lodged. Secondly is her solicitor right in saying we should apply for mediation then legal aid then the residence order? Can't we just apply for the R.O and stipulate some sort of joint care meanwhile? The father is Bangladeshi Muslim and the mother white British. It is known to the authorities that she is a victim of D.A. It seems unjust. I am considering taking it to Human Rights.
Thank you. I appreciate your comment re location however we believe we can manage the distance whilst not impacting on the father's time with his daughter. The time is likely to be split than shared on a day to day basis and my sister can offer her daughter a much better quality of life in Minehead. For one she will not be subject to his manipulation and control. We know that if she lived in Minehead she could build a healthy life for her daughter rather than living in constant intimidation in Manchester. The move at Easter was a tentative 'let's give this a go'....but whence the father returned home he became more immersed into his culture and excluded my sister. We now think the move may have been the beginnings of a bigger plan. Meanwhile my sister can stay at the refuge as often as she wants until this is resolved. Therefore she does have accommodation in Manchester and her plan was to make the most of this until a court decision. Do you think this will really jeopardise her chances? The child doesn't really have any ties with Manchester other than her father and providing my sister accommodates his rights then surely it oughtn't matter where the mother lives. If my sister remains in Manchester things will be frequently ugly - how does this benefit the child? Surely shared quality time with each parent is better than diluted stressed time with both?
Also can we make the application without the need of a solicitor? And would this put in jeopardy the Legal Aid entitlement?
Well no, that's hardly ideal for the child. If my sister gets her for half of the week she will be taken home to Minehead but my sister can use the refuge as a base if she needs to be in Manchester as back up or incase of illness. My sister would want to integrate her child into a normal toddler life in Minehead asap. At the moment the child is not integrated. She just spends all her time with the family (Muslim), one key member who denied she existed for the first two years of her life.
Ok. A couple more things then I should have enough info to plan our next step.
1) Can we make the application for interim contact ourselves without the need of a solicitor? And would this put in jeopardy the Legal Aid entitlement?
2) If my sister were to reside in the refuge for the part of week in which she has the child (which is for women and children with excellent facilities) - how would the court view this, in your experience.
3) Are you a UK based solicitor and can I request that my question not be viewable by the public as some of the questions on here are.
Clare, Following on from the above my sister filed and attended court with her solicitor at an emergency residency order. The reason being the child was/is showing signs of confusion and dysfunctional behaviour.
The contact at that point was 3 hours over three afternoons a week. The request was for equal parental care pending final court outcome and for some X-mas overnight stay. What was granted was 4 nights overnight care over Xmas but thereafter only 9-4 every Saturday (but not at the father's home).
Do you think the solicitor failed my sister?
Will this bare any relevance on the final outcome following a CAFCAS report?
It seems that we have gone sideways rather than gained anything?
The negotiations were done through solicitors and the court only endorsed the ''agreement'' - the father's solicitors would simply not negotiate.
Will the father's attempts to deny/discourage contact go against him?
We need some hope to cling on to.