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Clare, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 34895
Experience:  I have been a solicitor in High Street Practice since 1985 with a wide general experience.
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my daughter (11) is adamant she doesnt want to live with mum

Customer Question

my daughter (11) is adamant she doesn't want to live with mum (has done for 10 years, weekends with me). She is currently with me and refusing to go home. Ex has got a solicitor stating she must return tomorrow 4pm or else they will apply an emergency residence order on Thursday. I know I have equal parental responsibility. I am continuing my childs schooling (pick up/drop off) and she is fed clothed etc etc. I wanted mediation as my ex suffers depression and I feel if my daughter was allowed to get her point across maybe they could reach an agreement) How likely will the x get the emergency residence order agreed? cam I counter it (though I live with mum and dad who will support me and the child).
Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Clare replied 4 years ago.
Thank you for your question
I shall do my best to assist you but I need some further information first.
Why has your daughter made this sudden decision?
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

has wanted to live with me for a couple years, fallen out with mother who has depression (sees psychiatrist) mother doesn't really let her have an opinion, daughter fed up and frustrated and get on better with me as im less strict, but fair. her circle of friends/school is near her mother but I can still manage to do school run as im self employed. Daughter really upset last week when I picked her up and really insists on not going back. letter from ex solicitor says mother still wishes to co parent but wants daughter home by tomorrow 4pm, daughter wants me to fight it, ex wont speak to me but I would have preferred mediation for the 3 of us.

Expert:  Clare replied 4 years ago.
Your problem is your daughters age and the way that this has happened.
If you had made an application for a Residence Order in the normal way asking for her to live with you then her wishes would be seen as being of great importance - she is s little young (usually the trigger age is 12) but nonetheless it is (and remains) likely that court would go with her wishes provided matters were approached in the correct way
However in general terms we do not let 11 year old's make the major decisions in their lives such as whether or not they go to school or the dentist etc so the fact that there has been no "crisis" event is a major problem in terms of an application for her immediate return to her mother whilst the long term arrangements are considered.
Your over all preference - using a Family Mediator who is trained to also work with young people - is sound and certainly the best way forward
I would suggest that you find a suitable mediator today and ask for an Urgent appointment and then speak to the mother's solicitors and point out that the only sensible way forward is mediation
You may also wish to discuss with your daughter if she would be willing to return temporarily on the basis that you will issue an immediate application for Residence yourself.
I hope that this is of assistance please ask if you need further help
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

im off to a solicitor tomorrow as ex states only way forward is the legal route. I have my daughter with me and we have gone past the 4pm today deadline that was imposed by her solicitor. They are now preparing to go to court tomorrow whilst im at solicitor. Can a court issue this temporary emergency residence order without me being able to challenge? without my daughter being asked? If they can I need to warn my daughter that she may end up back at mums tomorrow.

Expert:  Clare replied 4 years ago.
I assume that you spoke to her solicitor today and your offer was refused but Yes I am afraid that the Court does indeed have that power - although the Judge may instead choose to list it for an urgent hearing next week.