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ukfamilysolicitor, Family Solicitor
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 1439
Experience:  Divorce, Finances, Children, Domestic Violence, Care Proceedings
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My 13 year old son changed residence from living with me

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My 13 year old son changed residence from living with me since birth, to living with his father since last February, who I separated from when he was 3. He has voiced that he feels he has made a mistake to his best friend here but feels he cannot get out of where he currently is as too many people got dragged into matters and he is terrified of upsetting his Dad. We have a joint residence with term time with dad, alternate weekends and half school holidays back here with us. Is there an easy way he can voice his desire to return to here?
Hello Welcome to Just Answer I am a Solicitor and will assist you. Please may I ask: - when was the court order made?- what is the current routine for your son spending time with you?- has your son expressed his wishes and feelings to you? Kind Regards Caroline
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
It was changed last February, it is a joint residency, he resides with his Dad term time and us alternate weekends and half the school holidays. He hasn't expressed his wishes to me rather his best friend who has discussed with his parents
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
My fear he is wants to come home but is staying through fear of upsetting his Dad, rather than feeling he is in the right place, but is too afraid to voice this (other than to his best friend)?
Hello I am sorry for my delay in replying to you -had a few technology issues today! This is a difficult one for your son as he genuinely might not want to upset his father by saying what he really wants to do. That being said - at 13 - his wishes and feeling should be given high regard. Perhaps try and establish with your son if what you have been told by the best friend is true. If it is and your son isn't able to express this to his father - perhaps you could on his behalf? if this is a possibility. Your son could also seek assistance through school. Perhaps a student counsellor might be able to talk through his wishes with him and assist in how this is communicated to the father. Mediation is always an option. This type of issue shouldn't really have to go back to court - if this is what your so wants - hopefully the father will accept this without matters having to go to court for your son to express his position to Cafcass as this will likely only inflame issues. Please do say if you would like me to clarify anything for you or discuss anything further. Kind Regards ***** ***** feedback is gratefully received
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
So even though there is a child arrangement order in place we could reverse it without the need for court intervention if our son wants to return it back to how it was previously where he was schooled with me and had weekend and holiday contact with Dad? There is a psychotherapist that we used previously, may he be able to assist our son and communicate with his father on his behalf if he genuinely wants to come home. I low he has said to his best friend that he is living with Dad purely for Dad's sake, not his own ad he feels it was a mistake for him. I also know how emotionally controlling his Dad is though, as I was with him 9 years and it took me 3 to leave him so I doubt our son would have to courage by himself.
Hello Yes - if matters can be agreed then court isn't required. The courts would prefer if parents agreed matters without the need for court intervention if this is possible. Given that you are both having regular unsupervised time with your son - then it is unlikely there are any child protection concern issues. Matters only need to go go to court - if they cannot be agreed and given your son's age - if that is truly what your son wants - to return to you in term time - then the court would likely order this - so it would be a shame if the father couldnt accept this and it had to be ordered. The psychotherapist seems worth considering. Kind Regards Caroline
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Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Thank you so much for your assistance. I guess the result lies in the hands of our son now x
Please do not hesitate to ask if I can assist you further. Kind Regards Caroline