The children are 11 and 8
For the last four and a half years the pattern of access has been;
- every other weekend from Friday after school until 6pm Sunday
- two evenings after school til 6pm
She is seeking to remove Mondays on the basis that our eldest is starting Comprehensive school in Sept and cant do homework in my flat!
At the same time she is asking me to have the girls on Sunday nights through to Monday mornings on weekends that I have them
My youngest has taken Tae Kwon Do classes on Mondays for 18 months and they have been fantastic for her. She loves them. My Ex wants to prevent either child enjoying activities I arrange - its always been the same, this is just worse than previously because its really hurting my daughter badly
I have offered to drop the older girl off en route to taking the youngest to Tae Kwon Do and I have been advised by the new school that no homework given on a Monday would have to be in on a Tuesday
There is no reason for the change, which is a reduction in my Access. My Ex just wants to stop the Tea kwon Do lessons
Possibly, but not as a substitute for a second weekday evening after school and not necessarily as a permanent fixture. I have said we should discuss it further. It flies in the face of seeking to establish a regular pattern of school mornings for both girls and is being used as yet another attempt to fix access at times that suit my Ex, rather than thinking about what would be best for the girls or my relationship with them.
I have examined the possibility of Tae Kwon Do on a Friday - since Fridays after school are already agreed - rather than a Monday (but at an additional cost to me of £100 pcm for a Gym membership) and am thinking of perhaps agreeing to the loss of Mondays provided they are replaced with any other after school weekday evening.
I know solicitors think that after school on weekdays does not constitute "Quality Time" but it most definitely does in my book and in our lives- and my Ex does actually agree with that!
6.30- 7.30pm. We usually leave at 6pm and the children would be home by 8pm with their mother. As I say, to address the issues with regard to homework, I have offered to drop the eldest off en route - which idea thoroughly appeals to my eldest, who would have all evening at home without her sister to commence any homework. I have had no reply to date to that offer of a compromise.
Club would be the same times on a Friday - but different venue where I need to be a Gym member - hence the additional costs which I am reluctant to incur.
Thanks for your time with this....
I am very grateful for the time you have spent on this and for the links provided, but you have not answered my main query, which was whether it is in fact the case that any legal precedent has been set, or cases resulted in an outcome, where a parent was successfully prosecuted (in UK) for wilfully obstructing previously agreed access. This is crucially important as I propose to make it clear that I will be turning up as usual to collect my children after school on a Monday and wish to advise my Ex, in the strongest possible terms, that she must not seek to obstruct that access or remove the children at that time....which I am sure she will seek to do. It is my access time, as it always has been and my expectation is that that should remain so and not that I should have to pursue formal legal action to achieve that.
Sorry, perhaps I didn't express myself sufficiently well - my question is not whether I can or should look to prosecute but more simply:
Are there cases on the record (in UK) where one parent has successfully prosecuted the other for willful obstruction of access?
and in particularly, where a father has done so to protect his access, whether or not a Court Order was in place?
Thank you once again for the time you have spent on this. I am extremely grateful and this is simply a concluding message. Unfortunately, taking the route to mediation and court is not a viable option for me (just as it isn't for many other fathers in my position), for several reasons, which it might be helpful for the law and courts to consider:
1. I cannot afford it
2. I am not prepared to put my children in a situation where they would be a part of the process - it would be immensely painful for them and their mother would use it to try to score points with them, but additionally:
3. I have not done anything in this situation. I have not caused any rupture or difficulty. I am not insisting on changes. It shouldn't be me that has to go to Court. If my Ex wants to force through changes that are unreasonable and is refusing (she has repeatedly refused) to discuss these with me then the law ought to provide for her, not me, having to take the steps you have recommended.
The whole situation is skewed against the more responsible and reasonable parent (whether it be Mother or Father) who happens not to be the Primary Carer. When the Primary Carer behaves so atrociously, (and this is just the worst example in four and a half years of unremitting nastiness) the law offers no real and effective support for the other parent. In effect, and although I shall continue to try to change my Exs viewpoint, I am screwed - simply because she couldn't give two hoots!
The law badly needs to change, because in these situations, as is very much the case here, the children are suffering at the hands of a tyrannical parent determined to destroy their relationship with their father. Concluding that I'll have to take legal action is NOT in the childrens best interest!