GAL asked to be excused 1 week before temp hearing...

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GAL asked to be excused 1 week before temp hearing...

Postby granitedad » Tue Jun 12, 2012 6:01 am

I wrote this whole post out and somehow erased it by mistake, so here we go again.

Found out yesterday that our court appointed GAL has asked to be excused from our case because he will not have his report completed in time. NJ's attorney has approved of this, mine has not. Our temp hearing is next Monday.

Background, NH, s1 and s5, after NJ filed ex parte, we had hearing and judge gave NJ full decision making responsibility and custody. I am able to see children Sundays 10-4, and tues and thurs from 4 pm until her AA meetings are over. No over nights. I recieved exclusvie use of the marital home, but had to pay child support. I was hoping that the GAL would see through her smokescreen and make some big changes in our situation.

Here is the timeline of our interaction with GAL
3/29 Gal introduces himself and distributes docs and fee structure via email
4/2/12 I complete, sign, notarize and write check for my 75% of GAL fee
4/6/12 I inform my attorney and GAL that the residence where the NJ is living with the kids is completely inappropriate. I am gravely concerned enough to pay NJs 25% of the GAL fee to expedite the process
4/13/12 I reach out via email to GAL to introduce myself and make myself available ASAP
4/14/12 GAL responds that he is wating for docs and payment from NJ to begin his investigation
4/30/12 I reach out a 2nd time out of concern that the ball is not rolling yet. I offer to help expedite the proceedings any way I can
5/1/12 GAL responds that he has JUST recieved NJ docs and 25% of fee. Gives me dates to choose from to meet him for inital date, I choose 1st available
5/11/12 I meet GAL for initial interview. i express my concern that because of foot draggin by NJ, his report will not be completed in time. He tells me that he is 95% confident it will be.
5/30 NJ FINALLY meets with GAL for first time
6/11 my attorney informs me that the GAL has asked to be excused from the case.

Now, my fear is with no GAL report, there is nothing to convince the judge to change the status quo at our temp hearing, and this will continue. She will continue to have all of the control. Has anyone experienced this? Is this what I can expect.

I had a feeling that this was going to happen. That it was the NJ and her attorneys plan all along to drag their feet as long as possible. None of the references given to teh GAL ever heard from him, he never even met my children, and he never contacted me after my initial interview a month ago.

Just really bummed out right now as I did everything in my power to help the GAL expedite this.
thanks for letting me vent.
granitedad
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Re: GAL asked to be excused 1 week before temp hearing...

Postby hoosier_dad » Tue Jun 12, 2012 6:28 am

What is your attorney suggesting? Unless you have a bad feeling about the GAL, I would motion to delay the temp hearing until the GAL report is complete. From the limited info it appears the GAL has met with both of you and wouldn't need a lot of time to wrap things up, so I'm wondering if the GAL was just hoping to punt your case. No way I'd let the GAL off that easy after collecting fees and doing most of the work unless you are sure the report will be in your ex's favor.

Also the GAL's job is to represent the childrens' best interests. That role isn't limited to producing a report and can be just as easily accomplished via witness testimony. That is risky since you don't know up front what the GAL will go on record with, but you could go ahead with the temp and call the GAL as a witness.
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Re: GAL asked to be excused 1 week before temp hearing...

Postby granitedad » Tue Jun 12, 2012 7:03 am

thanks for the reply HoosierDad. Spoke to one of my attorneys briefly last night. He seemed to have a wait and see attitude. Sent my other attorney an email first thing this morning, and hopefully we can get on the phone to see what his gameplan is.
I have no bad feeling about the GAL. like i said, we spent just the initial interview together. He didnt even take a look at my journal or any other supporting docs I have. I don't know how the GAL could contribute much to the hearing after an hour with me and an hour with NJ.
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