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ukfamilysolicitor, Family Solicitor
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 1436
Experience:  Divorce, Finances, Children, Domestic Violence, Care Proceedings
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My ex-girlfriend is trying to change the access to my children

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My ex-girlfriend is trying to change the access to my children because she feels she wants more money on a monthly basis than the £800.00 I give her per month, which is worked out on the CSA Calculator from my P60. I see the boys every Tuesday overnight, then every other weekend for two nights but she now wants to change this to every other weekend from Friday to Monday (to take to school) and not Tuesdays anymore. She says I can have them on Tuesday's but have to pick them up from school at 3pm, which as I work full time for the bank this is impossible to commit to and very unreasonable, especially as she does not work on Tuesday's or Thursday's. Our situation has been the same for 2 and a half years, but because of the money situation (i believe) she wants to hurt me in this way. It will mean I see less of the kids and won't see them for 11 days at a time. I'm not sure if she thinks that this will assist the CSA calculation but I'm not really concerned about that, more to do with her changing the childcare days that have worked extremely well for the last 2+ years. Clearly, she wants the whole weekend to herself and has no regard for the children and the current situation, is my opinion. The children are 7 and 6 and are very happy but she has become very vindictive since I purchased a new car and clearly the xmas period is a drain on her cash. I would go to mediation, but she has been so nasty on email to me, that I cannot do this, so wish to go the court route, so set in stone childcare days and xmas day as she wants them every xmas day (minor detail but still relevant). I have asked her to go to CSA also to confirm the monthly amount but she is reluctant to do this.
Where do I stand on this, given we have had a consistent childcare arrangement devised by ourselves for over 2 years and I have never let the kids down once in all that time and they are used to the process, seeing me approximately 120 days per annum?
Many thanks, Brett
I am very sorry to hear that your ex has been doing this.
I do think that you are going to have to make an application to the Court for a Child Arrangement Order to confirm the time that you spend with your children.
Before you can make an application to the court - you have to refer the matter to mediation first. Whilst I note that you do not want to refer to mediation - if you don't do this then the court will reject your application. Mediation help you try and agree and for your ex to understand how important it is for your children to have a set and consistent relationship with you. If your ex won't engage or you can't agree then the mediator will sign the form you need for court. It may also be the case that the mediator considers that your matter isn't suitable for mediation - but you have to at least refer to mediation and go to an assessment appointment on your own first.
There are lots of mediation services and there will be one local to you. Just google Family Mediation in your area and give them a call to start the ball rolling.
You make an application to court on Form C100. Send to your local family court. The court fee is £215. You may get a remission on the court fee dependant on your circumstances - see form EX160
It is the view of the court that children have the right to have a good relationship with both of their parents unless there are child protection concerns. There have been a lot of changes recently and it is now emphasised that both parents have equal rights. Courts consider that children do benefit from a routine and I note that your routine has been in place for 2 years now. The court will not consider that finances is a reason why routine should change.
If your ex does stop you seeing your children whilst you are going through this process - then this will actually assist you at court to argue that she is being hostile to you spending time with your children.
Once an order is made - if your ex breaches the order then you can return the matter back to court to seek enforcement. The court also has the ability to sanction the mother for a breach and this can include a fine or community work.
Please do not hesitate to ask if I can clarify anything for you.
Kind Regards
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Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Thanks, ***** ***** go to the mediation on my own initially and she goes separately. To be honest, I really don't want to be in the same room as her because of her lies and vindictiveness (all over money). She is with a barrister (boyfriend) and she has come up with an idea to say that I'm an alcoholic and all I do is drink which is complete rubbish and unfounded, I have a few pints a week like most people, but I think she thinks this will help her case, but totally unfounded, untrue and unproven. She is with a barrister and I think he has offered this advice, as you can see its not ideal, but sometimes that's how it goes! Do I apply to the court post mediation with the form C100 or can this be done simultaneously? Many thanks, Brett
Hello Bret
You initially refer to mediation by yourself. You and the mediator will meet for an assessment session first. If the mediator thinks your case is unsuitable for mediation then she will sign the C100 for you so can apply to court. You can't apply to court until the mediator signs your form.
If the case is deemed suitable for mediation then you can proceed with separate appointments. Again if your ex doesn't engage or mediation is unsuccessful them your mediator will sign your form so you can apply to court.
It is a shame when ex partners throw allegations - but in your case I would argue this doesn't make much sense - if alcohol was really an issue then wouldn't she look to restrict all your overnights and not just the Tuesday's.
Kindest Regards
Positive feedback gratefully received
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
I agree, we know its all about. One last question, does it matter who organises the mediation etc and will this count for in court. She is willing to go to mediation, as i think she enjoys a day out!! I think she can get legal aid to pay for that, but I'd rather pay for it, if it puts me in a better position when we go to court? Many thanks Brett
Hello Brett
It really doesn't matter who refers the matter to mediation - but you must at least go to an assessment session to get your form signed.
Mediation is really worth a go to try and resolve the issues without court - if this is possible.
Kindest Regards