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Custody help!!! Florida

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  • Custody help!!! Florida

    Hi there! My fiance and I are trying to get custody of his 4 year old son from his first marriage. His son really wants nothing to do with his mother and cries uncontrollably when we take him home after the end of the weekend. He tells us he wants to live at our house and doesn't like Mommy's house.

    It is not a healthy environment for him at his mother's house. Her fiance is very hot tempered (as she is as well) and his mother writes it all out on open "mothering" forums for all to see. Things like, "my son has no emotional attachment to me" or "I told my fiance no conflict in front of my son, yet he just caries on and my son cries and screams at him to stop yelling at me"... etc, you get the picture. On TOP of all of that, her fiance LOCKED her, my fiances 4 year old, and their 5 month old out of the house at 10:30 on a rainy night! She had noone to call except us and we came and got my fiances son.

    That is the short of the back story. We want to take her back to court to get primary, if not FULL custody of the 4 year old. So I guess the question is, are the online writings from her submissable in court and can we do it on our own? If you have ANY help or can point us in the right direction, we would be forever indebted! I have searched and searched and have not found much, so I am here! Thanks!

  • #2
    OH, OH...the responses to this thread are going to be great! Time to sit back and enjoy the show.

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    • #3
      What do you mean?

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      • #4
        Any help?

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        • #5
          Talk with an attorney most consults are free, document everything. Most importantly stay out of it and let Dad handle it. You are not going to get any kind of custody because you are not involved in this matter legally. I am a step-mom and I spend more time with my step-son then either of his parents do, it took me a long time to learn my role and it's been a lot better since. This is between Dad and Mom. Be supportive of Dad but you are not a party to this.
          Last edited by Kris23; 06-23-2009, 10:43 AM.

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          • #6
            I totally understand my role in the 4 year old's life. I am asking these questions for my fiance, but it does concern me for his sons well being. I am NOT the boys mother or father and his father and I are NOT married yet, so that gives me no say, all of this I know.

            What I also know is that I love that little boy with all of my heart, treat him no different than my own child and never will.

            My questions are about what is and is not "reliable evidence" in court and what we can use. We had a consult with an attorney and he was not interested in looking at the online print outs. We can't afford the attorney and our consult didn't help much. I thought I might get some encouraging, helpful information here!

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            • #7
              Thats good to know. Also just another little piece, even after your married to his father you still have no place in this legally. Emotionally you do and I can relate.
              Anything on the internet usually can be dismissed under "hear say" thats why he was not interested in them. In our case even her (step-sons mother) e-mail's were thrown out of court which she tried to present as evidence with a disgusted look on the judges face.
              Your fiance just needs to be there for the boy and work on a case and maintaining a positive relationship with him no matter what. By working on it, you guys continue to do some research, document happenings, and spend as much time with him as possible.
              Has he tried any local legal aid?

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Kris23 View Post
                Thats good to know. Also just another little piece, even after your married to his father you still have no place in this legally. Emotionally you do and I can relate.
                Anything on the internet usually can be dismissed under "hear say" thats why he was not interested in them. In our case even her (step-sons mother) e-mail's were thrown out of court which she tried to present as evidence with a disgusted look on the judges face.
                Your fiance just needs to be there for the boy and work on a case and maintaining a positive relationship with him no matter what. By working on it, you guys continue to do some research, document happenings, and spend as much time with him as possible.
                Has he tried any local legal aid?
                Do I just look up "local legal aid"?

                How about a book of us writing down bumps, bruises, things he says, them getting locked out of the house, etc.... that is ok in court?!

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                • #9
                  With him being so young, things he says is also "hear say" as he is to young to go into court.
                  Kids get bumps and bruises, so that is also not very good evidence. Gosh my step son and my three year old daughter take many spills! The way it was explained to me by my step-son's social worker before my husband got custody was to watch for area's on the body that are not boney. Boney area's such as arms, legs (shins), and even parts of the back (lower back/tail bone) have a tendency to bruise easier then other parts of the body. Those are not alarming area's.
                  I would start by searching your county websites. Do a little digging.
                  Also check into a Gaurdian ad Litem program in your county or state. That can also help you fiance's case if he is indeed the more suitable party.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Kris23 View Post
                    With him being so young, things he says is also "hear say" as he is to young to go into court.
                    Kids get bumps and bruises, so that is also not very good evidence. Gosh my step son and my three year old daughter take many spills! The way it was explained to me by my step-son's social worker before my husband got custody was to watch for area's on the body that are not boney. Boney area's such as arms, legs (shins), and even parts of the back (lower back/tail bone) have a tendency to bruise easier then other parts of the body. Those are not alarming area's.
                    I would start by searching your county websites. Do a little digging.
                    Also check into a Gaurdian ad Litem program in your county or state. That can also help you fiance's case if he is indeed the more suitable party.
                    The attorney we talked to said we could call her to the stand and ask "Did you write this" and that would be the way to get the internet posts/e-mails into the case.... Acting as our own "defense", can WE call her to the stand to ask her those questions?

                    Guardian ad Litem program.... will look into it!

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                    • #11
                      She could always lie, especially since it would make her look terrible. If she did you would have to have a way to prove she was lieing. I think that you could call her to the stand. At our hearing my husband and his son's mother both took the stand and they could ask eachother questions. Again I am not sure but I don't think that you can even be involved in the court room. Not sure but Dad might have to do it all.
                      I sat in on it but was not involved, even though I did everything your doing now. I just helped prepaire him and stayed in close contact with our lawyers but when it came time, I didn't say a word. I didnt need to...
                      There is no "our defense" or "can we call her to the stand". Its your fiance that is going to need to take charge in this battle.
                      Good luck!

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Kris23 View Post
                        She could always lie, especially since it would make her look terrible. If she did you would have to have a way to prove she was lieing. I think that you could call her to the stand. At our hearing my husband and his son's mother both took the stand and they could ask eachother questions. Again I am not sure but I don't think that you can even be involved in the court room. Not sure but Dad might have to do it all.
                        I sat in on it but was not involved, even though I did everything your doing now. I just helped prepaire him and stayed in close contact with our lawyers but when it came time, I didn't say a word. I didnt need to...
                        There is no "our defense" or "can we call her to the stand". Its your fiance that is going to need to take charge in this battle.
                        Good luck!
                        Again, I am just asking all on behalf of him, I know I am not allowed to "drill" her in court, or even sit next to my hubby-to-be. I know this is not MY battle, it is THEIR battle. I will sit back quietly (as I did at the first custody hearing) and let them do what they do. I only use "us" "we" "our" since he and I are working together NOW (just as you wrote "OUR hearing", but in the courtroom, it is all up to him! So I am well aware, just to make myself clear!

                        That is good to know that your husband and his ex both took the stand, that is good to hear! That way he can ask her. She really CAN"T lie about it since she uses FULL names and everything.... and if she DID lie and say "I didn't write that" well, any sane person would know she was lying under oath!

                        I also just called our counties Guardian ad Litem program and they said a court has to assign someone AFTER a hearing, not before...... so I have no idea.

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                        • #13
                          Also, does she need to document what she uses the child support payments for? He is supposed to have health insurace and such, since she is the primary care giver, that is her job to take care of WITH the CS payments (which she does NOT have for him), correct?! The good thing, fiance just got a new job with good benefits and he added all of us to the plan.

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                          • #14
                            I don't think that she has to document what child support is spent on. Since she is his custodial parent she is entitled to it and he is required to pay it. Unless your fiance and you are worried that his needs are not being addressed I would let that one go.
                            It's true that a GAL would be appointed by the court, but in a contested custody dispute a judge usually orders one or some other type of evaluator. Your fiance could even go as far as motion and request one at the next hearing, however their services are not free. Here in Minnesota the GAL fee is 1200.00 to split between all the parties. If he is not required to cover his insurance that could merit a reduction in his child support if he is willing to always cover that cost. He would have to motion for a modification to the current child support order which I only assume that is a seperate case then the pending custody case.
                            In court its not whether it's sane or even the truth sometimes it what you can prove. I witnessed my step-son's mother lie right out under oath many times in family court and child protection court.(CHIPS)

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                            • #15
                              Consider yourself a researcher... That CAN be your part in this. That is what I did for my husband when he sought custody of his daughter (we won).

                              I typed letters for him requesting records (and had him sign them)... I did the leg work basically. When it was required for him to come in person and bring his ID to get records I found out & we drove there together to get them. I got all the records I could to help, compiled them & then handed the notebook to my hubby and his attorney. I kept a notebook with all "events" listed, and was called as a witness. That was how I helped HIS case.

                              The judge was very careful (and even told me so) to make sure that I was not the one pursing this case..... that my HUSBAND was... but, our evidence was able to show the judge quite well.

                              What records?

                              Your husband is entitled to any doctor, dental, hospital, school records. You might be amazed what you find in these. We found that his daughter was taken to the ER more than we could've imagined... that she had cold sore medicine placed in her eye "by accident" because her Mom thought it was eye drops (how do you do that?)..... we found many, many things through getting these records.

                              You can also get the Criminal History Reports from Mom, boyfriends, friends, etc. all from your county clerk of court. You will need their name and birth date to do it. Sometimes you can get it with their physical address, but without verifying the birth date the clerk of court cannot verify it is the person for whom you are seeking the records (get it to an attorney anyway).

                              Tell your hubby to consider this............ If his daughter is indeed in such a serioius and dangerous situation, is it worth FINDING the money to get an attorney? I would suggest doing all the research you can to save yourself some money, and take that to an attorney.

                              Best wishes,
                              Amy

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