Separated Dads
Court outcome - Printable Version

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Court outcome - Naive - 04-30-2018

I’ll write up in the right place.
Three women judges, they ruled completely in ex’s favour. We got an agreement of 5/9 split then went into court for the rest, everything else in her favour. Passport, half holidays not until 2020, lives only with mother.

I think everyone was shocked, even her side.
It was a complete ambush, they didn’t care how bad ex was, they were going to rule anything in her favour.


RE: Court outcome - asd1270 - 04-30-2018

Hmm, did you have legal representation yourself .

Sorry to hear things didn't go as you expected.

RE: Court outcome - Tamagoto - 04-30-2018

Sounds pretty much identical to my outcome.

Fatherly man hugs. I’m sorry it didn’t work out how you wanted it to. Before all this happened I thought the talk of institutional sexism was rubbish, I’ve sadly been proven wrong many times.

RE: Court outcome - Charlie7000 - 04-30-2018

I am sorry - not what you wanted I know but it is 5/9 and it's an enforceable order. Only 2 years to go till you get half the holidays (well 18 months really). But you should have had it. When you say 3 Judges, were they magistrates? I don't count them as Judges. But it must feel bad when you want them to agree that your daughter lives with both parents and her time with you is as important. I may not have got lives with either if it hadn't been by consent (ie Barrister pressuring them into it because my ex had done some pretty bad stuff and it meant she avoided cross examination). The Judge I had was pretty wishy washy.

RE: Court outcome - Naive - 05-01-2018

I still can’t quite grasp it. So the other side without our knowledge asked the magistrates for an “indication” and they came back with one night every week and every other weekend. That meant ex would no longer budge and stuck to it, negotiation over. So after I agreed the times they turned round and said it won’t be a full hearing, the barristers only need to give “submissions” a quick speech on why we want what we’re asking for, my barrister was great, she set it all out. Her barrister simply said “since mr ******* has agreed the majority of time with mother then it should be a lives with mother only order” and that was it. AND THAT WAS IT, with zero evidence, a statement full of lies, they ruled everything in her favour.
What was especially nasty was the passport, they saw all the evidence of withholding the passport, yet they still said she has to hand over 7 days before holiday!!!!!! Not two weeks, not 30 days!!! Not when I book, but I have just 7 days to take her back to court and force her to hand passport over. After seeing the games she plays that’s just spiteful.
They must not have liked the look of me. I said nothing, I smiled, in a court full of women, with overwhelming evidence they effectively agreed with the ex that I was a babysitter.

I’m sorry but if you’re thinking “ah he’s just bitter because he lost, or he’s not telling the full story” then please don’t be fooled. I had the strongest case and a power hungry ex who just couldn’t help but build my case with her games. It was literally a coin toss.

RE: Court outcome - Charlie7000 - 05-01-2018

I hate that they try and get you to come to agreements before the hearing. Same thing happened to me - because the negotiations led to consent then there was no full hearing - and the points that weren't agreed were put before the Judge with both Barristers arguing their client's case. The problem is - when there's no full hearing there is no opportunity for cross examination to prove lies, or evidence to be heard. So even though the Judge has seen the statements they almost become irrelevant once you've agreed something as they aren't considered. It sounds like your Barrister, when agreeing the times for eow and the midweek night, should have said you only agree to that if it's on a shared care basis. I was given the option not to agree all along and go ahead with the full hearing. It's a minefield. Also sounds like the Magistrates were biased if your Barrister didn't manage to win any of your points.

I didn't want to agree to a consent order either but I think my Barrister had sussed that the Judge was a bit wishy washy and I may not get what I'd asked for if it went for the full hearing so he negotiated the lives with by putting the screws on them but I still had to compromise on time.

In my case it would have been "probably" 5/9 like you but not lives with. Or accept the lives with deal for 4/10. Naive - was your order sealed on the day? Just asking because of the problems I had getting a consent order approved for sealing after the court day.

I also felt like it wasn't a win - and it does feel like that - but in a way it is as you will have an enforceable order for 5/9 that she will have to keep to and need your consent to change anything or she's in breach. It's the same really. And she does have to release the passport within 7 days which although it's not long, she would be in breach if she didn't give it to you - would she risk that? If she didn't give it to you, you could get a specific issues order on a 24 hour notice hearing and at the same time ask for the order to say the passport will be held by you in future as she didn't comply.

That's the way I'm thinking about it. Anything that isn't belt and braces tied up can be dealt with by a quick specific issues order (albeit at £215 a time). As long as you have an enforceable order with the dates and times defined, and it written in that you get half the school holidays from 2020, then it doesn't matter that it's not lives with - it's almost half the time. If it helps my ex is still behaving as if son lives with her and talks about me picking him up from "home" for his "visit" to me. Her attitude won't change just because she's been forced to agree to something, but she does need my consent over various things. Again if she starts railroading without consent you can do a specific issues order.

I found it a huge anticlimax not to go ahead with a full hearing.

RE: Court outcome - proud_dad - 05-01-2018

Naive, I am sorry to hear about the outcome.

It's shit that it didn't go your way due to a failed family courts system. But 5 in 14 nights is still pretty good - I imagine that translates to week 1: Friday afternoon to Monday morning and week 2: two mid-week overnights. Spread over the two weeks, you will easily balance the ex's shit with the unbiased, unpressured, unconditional love.

May I ask why you can have 50% holiday time from 2020 onwards?

Take care brother.

RE: Court outcome - Naive - 05-01-2018

I know, at least I have a good amount of time, not what I asked for but its ok for now.
Its every Wed night and every other weekend Fri-Mon. Im not entirely happy as it means 7 days away from me every other week. but they didnt care about that at all. What they did care about is that despite ex went abroad last year for 5 days she is saying that is too long to be away from mum now so the holiday has to increase from 4 days until 2020. One of the many completely illogical things they said.

In relation to whether ********* should live with both parents or live with mother and spend some time with father, the fact that the parties cannot agree is not a reason for declining to make an order for shared residence, neither is that inability , by itself, a reason for making the order. Because the parents cannot agree, we find that there should be some order for residence. If we are to order shared residence, we need to be satisfied that there are circumstances which positively indicate that **********s welfare would be served by a shared "live with" order being made.
The father will still be able to exercise PR for child regardless. However we find that child needs a primary base with her mother. She is starting school and she requires stability of care. Therefore, lives with mother and spends time with father.

Mum comes first!!!!! Mum is the only parent and should be given the power, and exercise it in making my life hell as long as she says "in childs best interest" after everything. Father should know his place and stop trying to be a parent and just have fun with with child so poor mum can have a break. Its the attitude of society, it was the attitude of the mediator, CAFCASS and the entire court and everyone involved, except my daughter.

Not bitter much. The only solace I take is knowing that the result was all set long before I walked into court and nothing I did short of full out war against ex would have changed the outcome.

RE: Court outcome - LTCDAD - 05-01-2018

Such a shame... but remember make sure those 5 days are the best 5 days in the 14 so she grows up understanding her dad loves her and helps her at every stage.. the more people who love kids the better they turn out and knowing you love her 110% makes her time when she's not with you better...

Don't budge 1% on those 5 days and first sign of blocking by the ex... then back to court

RE: Court outcome - Tamagoto - 05-01-2018

It took me about 24-48 hours to turn the decision against me, around in my head and see the benefits of what was going to happen from now on.

For me they were:

- Better fit around my work life. In reality I work full time and doing 7/14 would have strained my relationship with work
- Less use of childminders (only once every 2 weeks for 1.5 hours now)
- The kids look forward to seeing me more. When I am with them, I am entirely with them. Not distracted by work or chores or anything. I am 100% theirs, something their mother can't say
- As they get older - they can ask for more time and their wishes will be respected by the court
- Opportunity to increase contact in other ways when they aren't with me. A scheduled video call, I post them postcards and deliver books to their mothers address, with their name on
- Time for me to be me, something I think we all noticed when we became parents is how much of ourselves we lost. Friendships, hobbies etc. Now I can enjoy those things, guilt free. I can be a more rounded, happier person which means I am a better parent

The obstacle truly is the way, I'm happy with the outcome now, happier than I would have been if I had "won"