Child custodial advice for a determined Dad

Parental Alienation, Malicious Mother Syndrome, dealing with the ex, and various other non-legal concerns throughout the process.

Child custodial advice for a determined Dad

Unread postby Snowolf » Thu Feb 23, 2017 9:43 pm

Hello everyone, first time posting on this forum. Here's a bit about myself to further help you understand my situation and who I am. Im a very easygoing guy, and I generally get along with everybody. I am a father of a wonderful 16 month old boy, and I am also recently separated from my ex fiance who is the mother. We were together for almost 3 years and had our son together. Both of us were active duty in the Navy and when we seperated she received permission through the courts in Washington to move down to California.

I have currently been away from my son since November and took leave right after Christmas to see him. His mother has not been making this process any easier on me, instead of the five days I asked to have him during that time, she gave me four for basically because she wanted to and could. I have always been a good father to our son and when she worked I had a lot of 1 on 1 bonding time with him.

The case currently resides in Washington, but I am moving to California in a few days to be involved in my son's life. The temporary parenting plan is very basic, I have every other weekend with him, not even a Wednesday. I want more time with him, but his mother will not reasonably talk to me about it. She says "I like the way it is now." She says further down the road, we can DISCUSS "possibly" upping my hours. I have not scorned her, she just fell out of love with me and is upset because this went to court and I didn't let her easily take our son away.

My attorney said I need to sit down and discuss a permanent parenting plan with her. This will avoid it going to trial where I was told it will not favor me when it comes to parenting time. The problem is, she is very sneaky and doesn't reveal anything or even tell me how he is. I have to beg her for photos, so how can I expect her to actually discuss a plan with me to increase my time with our son?

I've got a place live down in California and I'll have the other room set up for our son. I also am going to school down there and Im working on getting an easy part time job to slide into. Im currently paying child support as well and haven't been late on a single payment. I just can't seem to win though and this last 4 months has been incredibly tough on me financially, I'm slowly watching everything I've earned since being in Navy dwindle away.

I'd love for some advice from fellow dad's who have been down this road, or someone who has experience in this department.
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Re: Child custodial advice for a determined Dad

Unread postby BartSimpson » Thu Feb 23, 2017 10:06 pm

Hello,

Your attorney is wrong. You should take this matter to Court immediately. That is the only way the mother will negotiate in good faith - with a looming court date.
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Re: Child custodial advice for a determined Dad

Unread postby Snowolf » Thu Feb 23, 2017 10:16 pm

BartSimpson wrote:Hello,

Your attorney is wrong. You should take this matter to Court immediately. That is the only way the mother will negotiate in good faith - with a looming court date.


Hello! I see, definitely not what he's been telling me, to be honest I feel as if most of his efforts are used towards other cases. I'm starting to believe there isn't much more of a need for an attorney in Washington if I'll be in California. Would you consider it a better move to hire a new attorney? As far as I'm aware her attorney is still in Washington as well.
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Re: Child custodial advice for a determined Dad

Unread postby BartSimpson » Thu Feb 23, 2017 10:21 pm

The matter may still be heard in Washington until you change jurisdiction. I haven't really thought that part through yet - you've filed in WA, but now both parents and child are leaving the State.

Your attorney holds himself out as a mediator?
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Re: Child custodial advice for a determined Dad

Unread postby Snowolf » Thu Feb 23, 2017 10:41 pm

BartSimpson wrote:The matter may still be heard in Washington until you change jurisdiction. I haven't really thought that part through yet - you've filed in WA, but now both parents and child are leaving the State.

Your attorney holds himself out as a mediator?


Both of our attorneys seem to think we can work this out between both of us. They think we can come up with a plan between each other, but anything I come up with will get shot down by her, its her way or the highway. She acts like everything is cordial between us to her attorney, but when I Skype our son and ask how she is she tells me "you don't need to know that". I simply want a cordial relationship with her for our son's sake, even after all she's done to me.

So I guess both of our attorneys are acting as mediators in that sense.
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Re: Child custodial advice for a determined Dad

Unread postby Chaos » Fri Feb 24, 2017 12:25 am

Sounds like you already know you aren't going to just work it out between you.

Some important logistical questions, so we can help you figure out your next move. Are your attorney's in Washington or California? Eastern or western Washington? Are you moving to Northern or southern California? What is the distance between you going to be once you move?
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Re: Child custodial advice for a determined Dad

Unread postby Snowolf » Fri Feb 24, 2017 12:53 am

Chaos wrote:Sounds like you already know you aren't going to just work it out between you.

Some important logistical questions, so we can help you figure out your next move. Are your attorney's in Washington or California? Eastern or western Washington? Are you moving to Northern or southern California? What is the distance between you going to be once you move?


Thanks for the help! Both of our attorneys are currently in western Washington and I'll be moving to northern California on sunday about 10 miles away from my son. Any info I can get is greatly appreciated brother.
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Re: Child custodial advice for a determined Dad

Unread postby Chaos » Fri Feb 24, 2017 1:16 am

Cool. I asked because Western Washington tends to be more dual parent friendly than eastern Washington. One of the two big counties?

You're in a bit of an odd spot, jurisdictionally speaking. Western Washington isn't a bad place to get a parenting plan, but you may do better in California. Have you talked to your attorney about what it would take to move jurisdiction? Generally the child would have to live there for six months, but with you both living there, I wonder if you can just agree to move it. I don't know that you can, but it's worth finding out.

She probably assumes it's all the same, so if you can, and she'd agree, it's something to consider.
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Re: Child custodial advice for a determined Dad

Unread postby Snowolf » Fri Feb 24, 2017 2:01 am

Chaos wrote:Cool. I asked because Western Washington tends to be more dual parent friendly than eastern Washington. One of the two big counties?

You're in a bit of an odd spot, jurisdictionally speaking. Western Washington isn't a bad place to get a parenting plan, but you may do better in California. Have you talked to your attorney about what it would take to move jurisdiction? Generally the child would have to live there for six months, but with you both living there, I wonder if you can just agree to move it. I don't know that you can, but it's worth finding out.

She probably assumes it's all the same, so if you can, and she'd agree, it's something to consider.


This is something I've been considering, I've heard my county tends to lean towards the mother. I would absolutely love to get this case down to California the more I think about it. I understand she needs to agree so does that mean we both have to get new attorneys? I'm guessing so, but I'm very new to the court system and how it works. If that's the case I don't think she'd agree to have it moved, I believe she is comfortable with who she has.

What is normally the process on changing the jurisdiction? Does It just require all the case paperwork to be transferred to the county court in the county I'm living in? Is this something I should jump on tomorrow or can I make It happen when I get down there? It has been 4 months since they've moved, So there's two months until the official jurisdictional change if we don't come to an agreement.
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Re: Child custodial advice for a determined Dad

Unread postby Chaos » Fri Feb 24, 2017 2:32 am

I don't know what it takes to change jurisdiction in an ongoing case, or if you can. That's something to ask your attorney about. One of the two biggest counties? I'm from Washington, Pierce county is where my case was adjudicated, and I know a little about the judges is why I ask. King county is also a decent place to set up a parenting plan.

Once you're both there, and six months has passed since your child moved there, you might be able to force a change in jurisdiction. You'd have to file a motion for it, and I don't know how successful it would be. You need to ask your attorney that. And yeah, you'd both need new lawyers.
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