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Clare
Clare, Family Solicitor
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 35062
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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I went to court about custody for my two daughters last July

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I went to court about custody for my two daughters last July 2017 and unfortunately I need to go back again.The reason is have here two current cases of the mum is not complying with the court order and at the same time someone she wants to take the girls for 5 years to America.Is there a minimum o maximum time to go back to court?
Do we have to go under at least a single mediation session again?

My name is ***** ***** I shall do my best to help you.

How old are your daughters and what are the breaches?

Has she applied for permission to take the children to America?

Customer: replied 18 days ago.
Court order Says: "The children shall live with the Mother"
Holidays:
I offered her to sit down and talk and work this out together by the end of last year. She didn't reply to my request. She then sent me a text message saying:
Message from her sent on the 20th of January.: "Hello, the girls will be in Spain for the February half term. Then in Easter we are flying on the 30 March and will return the 13 April. For summer we will fly to Barcelona on the 26th July and then come back on the 17th August, please let me know if from the 17th August you will take them somewhere until the end of August. The mum".This means that she has taken them for the entire of all the school holidays and till the 20th of August, living me just 10 days until they go back to school in September.The court order says: "The joint intention is to move towards the children having stay in contact with her father for a full weekend every other weekend and for half of the school holidays but this should be achieved in a way that has full regard to the children's wishes and feelings"Up-to-date I haven't denied any of her holidays.As per the court order says: "the Cafcass officer having advised that there should be a referral to the "parents as partners programme" at the Tavistock clinic the mother will on or before the 21st of July seek of referral to that programme by her GP. Should further support or counselling be advised by the Tavistock both parties intend to co-operate with any such advice".
Then also the court order instruct that: "The parents shall each, individually, attend the Shared parent information programme".The first one at Tavistock clinic, she cancelled the whole programme without attending any session.
I attended the MID (Mid Mediation and Counselling ). As far as I know she said that she did it too but I cannot confirm either way.I never had a full weekend with both or either in my house. My older daughter slept in my house only for two nights in the last two years.
My youngest daughter stayed with me while they were sleepovers only.
In the last four weeks I spent four hours in total. I tried for many times to work this out with her but she refuses.The court order says:
"They'll co-operate to their best ability to promote the success of contact between the children and their father"......" Their joint intention is to move towards the children having staying contact between their children and their father...."The mother is not complying with this. I tried for several times to sit down and decide parenting responsibility, schools holidays and there is no answer back from her.She didn't applied yet to take them to the US next year or moving there to live, but she said the coming is thinking to relocate her.
Customer: replied 18 days ago.
Sorry Clare, My daughters are 7 and 10 years old

Ok I see the problem with those - what actual contact did the Order give you?

Customer: replied 18 days ago.
About the contact the order only specify that the mother make the children available to spend time with the Father as follows:IT IS ORDERED BY CONSENT THAT:b) The mother is to make the children available to spend time with the Father as follows:
I on 1st july 2017 from 10am to 4pm
II on 15th of July 2017 from 10am until 5 pm
III on 22nd July 2017 from 10 am to 6pm
IV on 26 august from 10 am to 6 pm
V Thereafter fortnightly on a Saturday from 10am until 6pm
VI For such additional contact as shall be agreed between the parties5. issues between the parties.
b) they will co-operate to their best ability to promote the success of contact between the children and their father.
c) Their Joint intention is to move towards the children having staying contact with their father for a full weekend every other weekend and for a half of the school holidays but this should be achieved in a way that has full regard to the children and feelings.After a year she didn't help at all.I can attached the order if you need me to be more specific..

And have they spent 10am to 6pm with you on alternate saturdays?

Customer: replied 17 days ago.
Rarely. Never easy to confirm with the mother in advance. If I have spent Saturdays, it was may be with one of the two. Then also in terms of respecting the 10am to 6pm frame, never easy, the girls felt they want to go back home before the time. The mum is telling them things like "if you don't come back home then I don't open the door to you".
The mum most of the time said they don't want to come with you. Very difficult to arrange. So difficult to move on without her cooperation.

So in fact she has breached the order totally?

Customer: replied 14 days ago.
She is constantly taking things to the limit so she doesn't breaches totally. I think I've explained you before. I gave enough information. In regards ***** ***** forward she doesn't promote or help to re-establish the relationship between the girls and the father. Nothing is been achieved. And she blames is my fault. So this is a classic case of "bullying". She kept saying all the time the girls don't want to see me. It's a complicated case.I try to talk to my daughters and they are too young to know, I prefer to concentrate to build a great relationship, but they are scared, they don't want to talk, they are maybe confused about the role of a father.
So I come back to her and see if we can work this together, then she blame is my fault again and I decide to stop, because it escalate without sense.I keep records of her messages, texts, and put them all together in one file.What else can I do?Thanks.

In fact she is simply breaching the order as the children are not spending time with you when they should

The threat about not letting them back in is very clear emotional abuse

You are not seeing the children when you are supposed to see them and you have not tried to enforce that.

I understand that you are concerned about the other issues - but they are harder to enforce and it would be easier to deal with them as part of the overall enforcement application.

You should not try and speak to the children about this.

You should concentrate on making their time with you enjoyable - and if they say they need to go home early simply say calmly "this is your time with me so shall we go and...."

You need to file a form C79 to enforce the Order in all its elements

I hope that this is of assistance - please ask if you need further details

Customer: replied 7 days ago.
Many thanks for your support. I'll get back to you if I need more details.

You are most welcome

Clare and other Family Law Specialists are ready to help you