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Clare, Family Solicitor
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 34900
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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hi, I am receiving rude and abusive emails from my ex partner

Customer Question

hi, I am receiving rude and abusive emails from my ex partner 4 years after our seperation and subsequent divorce. I have to retain contact with him as we have a 6 year old son. Can I stop him, or do I need to go to the police? I don't have huge funds available and we have joint parental responsibility for our child although he lives with me 26 days of each month
Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  Clare replied 4 years ago.
Thank you for your question.
My name is Clare and I will do my best to help you but I need some further information first.
What was the outcome of reporting him?
How many e-mails do you get a week on average?
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

The outcome was that the police called him and reminded him that he was responsible for returning my son to me at the end of the weekend. they also called me before and after the pick up to ensure that everything was fine.

The number of emails is sporadic as it depends on his moods. I tend to get a barrage over a few weeks, and then it will go quiet for a few weeks.

I have spoken to the police again this week as it's making me really stressed and feeling ill. They have suggested that I get something in place to regulate when he is allowed to email me, and the subjects that he is allowed to approach. They have said that as it's conversational (i.e. I reply to him factually) it is a case of nuisance messaging rather than harassment.

The emails generally accuse me of not allowing him contact with our son, and as this is incorrect I feel obliged to answer with a factual answer. I am very concious not to be rude, or personal in responses. I have no interest in restricting access between him and my son, as it wouldn't benefit anyone, but I would like to work out how to restrict the ex husbands access to me. I changed my phone numbers just over a year ago to stop nuisance phone calls and he argues that his current argument is that he should be able to call his son.

Expert:  Clare replied 4 years ago.
Is there a set pattern of contact or do separate arrangements have to be made each time?
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

The set pattern is alternate weekends he spends with his Dad, he will pick him up from school on a friday and I meet him in the same public spot at 6pm on a Sunday to collect him and bring him home. I also give my some the phone to call his Dad on Wednesday's at 7 pm and on the Sundays when he spends the weekend with me at 7pm. Sometimes his Dad can't answer and I get abusive emails that he doesn't have a number to call him back on. I understand it must be frustrating but can't give my number out again as my ex husband abused it so badly previously

Expert:  Clare replied 4 years ago.
So in fact there is no need for much email contact in any event?
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

no. I've always said that the child comes first and I'll always talk to him about welfare etc, but he twists such queries with me to get attention to his own feelings. I'd like to ignore all emails but don't want this to get me into trouble. I also don't know if I have an obligation to discuss welfare etc with him? To me, the school is set for the next 5 years, childcare is in place, maintenance agreed, and visits agreed.

I set up a shared hotmail calendar to input school holiday childcare as this is split across us, but he never inputs into it. I add the days that I need him to take charge of our son, and the pick up times and venues. I always do this about 4-5 months in advance to allow for planning

Expert:  Clare replied 4 years ago.
So other than in emergencies there is need for emails.
If this is the case then simply say that in future you will only respond to emails that are relevant and warn him that you will simply ignore any non relevant emails and will not respond - then stick to that policy.
You cannot get any orders as they are enforceable where there has to be some basic level of exchange - but you will not be penalised for ignoring abusive messages
I hope that this is of assistance - please ask if you need further details