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Clare
Clare, Family Solicitor
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 33549
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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My son is 13, my wife and I divorced 8 years ago but still

Resolved Question:

My son is 13, my wife and I divorced 8 years ago but still she is bitter and reflects this via controlling the contact I have with my son. She is letting me see him but few and far between. I would like to see him more often, I pay child maintenance through CSA and have done since we parted company. I recently saw my son at the weekend and he desperately wants to spend more time with me and is constantly let down by his mother controlling the situation, he keeps saying that he thinks she is jealous.
I wondered what my options are as I'm seriously considering going through the courts, my only contact with my ex is via email and she is very uncooperative.
Many thanks
Submitted: 10 months ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  Harris replied 10 months ago.
Hi, thanks for your question. What are the current arrangements?
Customer: replied 10 months ago.
Am I being charged for continuing this with every question or response
Expert:  Clare replied 10 months ago.
HiMy name is ***** ***** i have been a family lawyer for more than 30 years.The law says that a child is entitled to regular personal contact with BOTH parents - and the courts will enforce this if necessary.At 13 your son's wishes will be seen as important in deciding what contact there should be. Not totally - he is after all still only 13 - but if he wants more contact then the courts will certainly try and achieve it.Assuming that you live reasonably close to his school alternate weekends Friday to Monday and half the school holidays plus one night in the week is a reasonable position - although obviously the actual arrangements should reflect the needs of your sonThe starting point is to arrange to attend Family mediation - choosing a Mediator who can also work with young people so that your son's wishes can be brought to the discussions.If that fails or your ex does not attend then you can apply to the court using a form C100 in the knowledge that your ex does NOT have the power to dictate contact!Please ask if you need further details (all covered in the fee already paid)Clare
Customer: replied 10 months ago.
Hi ClareThank you for the response, the problem I have is that my son is scared of upsetting his mum and I feel that if he was ever asked in front of his mum a question about wanting to stay with me he wouldn't want to upset her and would basically just say something that she wants to hear.I was seeing him once every 3 -4 weekends until 2 years ago, when I had a fall out with my own mum which resulted in my mum contacting my ex in order to have contact with her grandson, which is fine but during the past 4 months I've been back in touch with my mum again via phone conversations and she in turn has been saying that when she was having my son he was saying things like he wants to see me and that she was being told by my ex that she would appreciate me having my son more often but then every time I contact my ex and suggest dates she just throws it back in my face.Basically she is feeding my mum a load of rubbish and contradicting herself, It was all a bit coincidental that when my mum got in touch with her, my contact was then cut off and during that period I was messaging my ex by email asking to see my son and all I was getting back was he doesn't want to see you at the minute.In reality my son is very impressionable and is also smart listening to everyone's conversations, if he hears my ex and my mum discussing me he wouldn't want to upset either of them but after a lot of emails eventually 1 month ago I got a response from my ex stating that he wants to see me which was last weekend for 1 day again at her request saying that I need to build a relationship again.I didn't question that but after 5 mins of time with my son he was already saying that he really missed me and that his mum is jealous and he doesn't like upsetting her. As the day progressed he started to ask if he could come back to my house overnight, we contacted his mum by email but no response so he then suggested that when I drop him off he will go in and ask if he can go home with me but no surprises he came out crying saying she wouldn't let him.... So what happened to me taking him off her hands more often that was a perfect opportunity but again she likes the control and likes to get to me but doesn't realise he is of an age now that it's affecting him.She won't communicate with me other than by email and even then it's quite abrupt and short where as I'm polite in my emails, I know for a fact she won't do mediation hence why I'm thinking my last resort is court or I may try and go through my mum as I know she will say something to her.Sorry for long response
Expert:  Clare replied 10 months ago.
Deep breaths!The basics are there - the child wishes to spend more time with you and it appears that your ex is willing to discuss it (on her terms I appreciate but nonetheless to discuss it)A mediator is in fact very skilled at speaking with children , and ensuring that the wishes brought to the adult discussions are expressed in a way that is positive rather that negative Arrange Family mediation to "help in the discussion of the way forward"
Customer: replied 10 months ago.
I really don't think she will go through mediation!
Expert:  Clare replied 10 months ago.
Depends how you sell it to her!In any event it is where you start!
Customer: replied 10 months ago.
Where is the best place to find a mediator?
Customer: replied 10 months ago.
I'm presuming like you stated before if she didn't turn up I can take it further and this would probably work in my favour
Expert:  Clare replied 10 months ago.
www.familymediationcouncil.org.ukYes it will certainly help you
Customer: replied 10 months ago.
Ok thank you
Expert:  Clare replied 10 months ago.
My pleasure - and I am sorry to ask but unless you give me a positive rating I do not get my share of the fee you have paid!
Clare, Family Solicitor
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 33549
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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