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Equal Parenting
#11
(03-21-2018, 04:24 PM)50/50 Wrote:
(03-21-2018, 04:09 PM)Naive Wrote:
(03-21-2018, 03:39 PM)50/50 Wrote:
(03-21-2018, 03:15 PM)Charlie7000 Wrote: This is the trouble with agreements after divorce - people don't keep to them.  Even if it was written down it isn't enforceable (but may prove it had been agreed).  Are you sure there isn't reference to it in a text message or email?  Suggest you get it written down!  eg send her an email saying you wish to now formalise the Mon Tues, Fri Sat Sun 50/50 arrangement you agreed in x month 2016 (17?) and suggest you both go to mediation and draw up a parenting plan to agree ongoing arrangements for the children.

Then you sort of have it in writing.  If she replies "we never talked about that before we are keeping it the same as now" or something - then it doesn't actually prove it was talked about but suggests it might have been, or why are you asking?.  Having something on paper (email or text) could help.  And if you're lucky she'll reply "we're not doing that now I've changed my mind" then it's evidence you had agreed to do it.

Anyway - your rights are - you are both equal in the eyes of the law but if they live with her most of the time she has the power to pull the strings a bit and say no.  And she could just reduce it more or anything.

You need to try mediation before applying to court, but the only legal requirement is to have attended a MIAM (the first session) so if you go to that and she's invited to the next session  and won't go or doesn't turn up, then you asked to be signed off and then you can apply to court.

Ask for 50/50 shared care "lives with both parents".  The summary box is where you get a brief chance to say what you're applying for and why and how it would work etc.  The court fee costs £215.  You may or may not get it but you'll get a lot of help on here.  But you would get at least 4 nights a fortnight and half the school holidays as a standard.

I can't understand that just because out of necessity I had to move into my parents whilst waiting for the house equity issue to be resolved and it was impractical for me to have the kids 50/50 then that it would go in her favor? I now will very shortly have my new house ready for the kids to move in 50% of the time, they are extremely excited and I don't want them to be unsettled any more than they have to be.

I am purposefully doing the house out to make it as fun for them (and me obviously) for when they stay over. They have had input into what the house will have in it games / toys wise, I couldn't have involved them anymore.

50/50

With the utmost respect I think you need to start preparing yourself for something.

Whats "fair" or "necessary" for the parent [father] has zero bearing on whats best for the child and no one, I mean no one is going to care.
Im sorry to be the profit of doom but some of the shitty situations Ive seen on this site are truly astounding.
Whatever you do, do it quickly, bolstered by other single mums, your ex could very well turn round and say actually youre not having the kids, its too disruptive.
If you look at it from a selfish point of view, your ex's choice is. £500 a month and kids all the time. Or no money and lose kids half the time.

Just dont think the courts will be fair.


God Im on a downer today lol, I was naive and I made mistakes, I just dont want anyone else to make them, I should never have left that house without my daughter.

I understand what you are saying and appreciate the advice.

£500 a month is nothing to her really as she's on close to 6 figures but again the pension side of things will still be aggravating her!

About being too disruptive, going from the current situation to nothing will affect the kids a hell of a lot more than nothing and I'd like to think she has the intelligence to realise this.

Although I'm preparing myself for the worst!
Fair enough buddy, the "£500" and "disruptive" were just examples but you get what I mean.
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#12
(03-21-2018, 04:29 PM)Naive Wrote:
(03-21-2018, 04:24 PM)50/50 Wrote:
(03-21-2018, 04:09 PM)Naive Wrote:
(03-21-2018, 03:39 PM)50/50 Wrote:
(03-21-2018, 03:15 PM)Charlie7000 Wrote: This is the trouble with agreements after divorce - people don't keep to them.  Even if it was written down it isn't enforceable (but may prove it had been agreed).  Are you sure there isn't reference to it in a text message or email?  Suggest you get it written down!  eg send her an email saying you wish to now formalise the Mon Tues, Fri Sat Sun 50/50 arrangement you agreed in x month 2016 (17?) and suggest you both go to mediation and draw up a parenting plan to agree ongoing arrangements for the children.

Then you sort of have it in writing.  If she replies "we never talked about that before we are keeping it the same as now" or something - then it doesn't actually prove it was talked about but suggests it might have been, or why are you asking?.  Having something on paper (email or text) could help.  And if you're lucky she'll reply "we're not doing that now I've changed my mind" then it's evidence you had agreed to do it.

Anyway - your rights are - you are both equal in the eyes of the law but if they live with her most of the time she has the power to pull the strings a bit and say no.  And she could just reduce it more or anything.

You need to try mediation before applying to court, but the only legal requirement is to have attended a MIAM (the first session) so if you go to that and she's invited to the next session  and won't go or doesn't turn up, then you asked to be signed off and then you can apply to court.

Ask for 50/50 shared care "lives with both parents".  The summary box is where you get a brief chance to say what you're applying for and why and how it would work etc.  The court fee costs £215.  You may or may not get it but you'll get a lot of help on here.  But you would get at least 4 nights a fortnight and half the school holidays as a standard.

I can't understand that just because out of necessity I had to move into my parents whilst waiting for the house equity issue to be resolved and it was impractical for me to have the kids 50/50 then that it would go in her favor? I now will very shortly have my new house ready for the kids to move in 50% of the time, they are extremely excited and I don't want them to be unsettled any more than they have to be.

I am purposefully doing the house out to make it as fun for them (and me obviously) for when they stay over. They have had input into what the house will have in it games / toys wise, I couldn't have involved them anymore.

50/50

With the utmost respect I think you need to start preparing yourself for something.

Whats "fair" or "necessary" for the parent [father] has zero bearing on whats best for the child and no one, I mean no one is going to care.
Im sorry to be the profit of doom but some of the shitty situations Ive seen on this site are truly astounding.
Whatever you do, do it quickly, bolstered by other single mums, your ex could very well turn round and say actually youre not having the kids, its too disruptive.
If you look at it from a selfish point of view, your ex's choice is. £500 a month and kids all the time. Or no money and lose kids half the time.

Just dont think the courts will be fair.


God Im on a downer today lol, I was naive and I made mistakes, I just dont want anyone else to make them, I should never have left that house without my daughter.

I understand what you are saying and appreciate the advice.

£500 a month is nothing to her really as she's on close to 6 figures but again the pension side of things will still be aggravating her!

About being too disruptive, going from the current situation to nothing will affect the kids a hell of a lot more than nothing and I'd like to think she has the intelligence to realise this.

Although I'm preparing myself for the worst!
Fair enough buddy, the "£500" and "disruptive" were just examples but you get what I mean.

Understood, fingers crossed that this will be less painless than I'm expecting but I'm not holding my breath!
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#13
Take a good look at my long post in the court outcomes forum (5/9 split). Seems we have similar situations. Ask if you have specifics!
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#14
(03-22-2018, 06:13 AM)Tamagoto Wrote: Take a good look at my long post in the court outcomes forum (5/9 split). Seems we have similar situations. Ask if you have specifics!

Hi Tamagoto.

I've read your post thanks for the pointer.

I have just compiled an email which I'll be sending to the ex tonight explaining what we had discussed back in 2017 and why I think it would be a good starting point for trialing a 50/50 split.

I honestly feel physically sick at the moment!

50/50
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#15
Keep in mind as well, when it comes to child maintenance it is not just about over night stays (and that is B&W in the legislation). It is purely about day-to-day care...

- who arranges doctors/dentist/opticians etc...
- who does the school contact
- who pays for all the children's activities, uniform, school trips, other funds etc...

For CM to be applicable, she has to prove you care for the children to a lesser extent than her. I would keep quiet or now, stick with the plan, stay involved in all aspects of the children's up bringing and care, possibly propose a parenting plan which covers things like - care for the children should you or your ex not be able to during that persons allocated time, bed-times, who is responsible for doctors/dentist/opticians etc... (i.e. you both are), costs for children's education and extra-curricular activities, uniform and so on... Both sign it, then you both have a hard time to state otherwise when it comes to either parent going to the CMS or court.

Once you are in a pattern for an extended period it is very unlikely courts will change that pattern and care arrangement without there being a welfare concern. They don't like to change children's day to day care arrangements or schools.
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#16
(03-22-2018, 12:26 PM)boyce57 Wrote: Keep in mind as well, when it comes to child maintenance it is not just about over night stays (and that is B&W in the legislation).  It is purely about day-to-day care...

- who arranges doctors/dentist/opticians etc...
- who does the school contact
- who pays for all the children's activities, uniform, school trips, other funds etc...

For CM to be applicable, she has to prove you care for the children to a lesser extent than her.  I would keep quiet or now, stick with the plan, stay involved in all aspects of the children's up bringing and care, possibly propose a parenting plan which covers things like - care for the children should you or your ex not be able to during that persons allocated time, bed-times, who is responsible for doctors/dentist/opticians etc... (i.e. you both are), costs for children's education and extra-curricular activities, uniform and so on...  Both sign it, then you both have a hard time to state otherwise when it comes to either parent going to the CMS or court.

Once you are in a pattern for an extended period it is very unlikely courts will change that pattern and care arrangement without there being a welfare concern.  They don't like to change children's day to day care arrangements or schools.

Hi boyce57,

Thanks for the input, my idea was to to go 50/50 on everything, that's all costs and parenting. At the moment I pay her over £400 a month, this figure came about after I used the online calculator, we have never been in touch with the CMS and I don't want to.

At the moment grandparents always pick the kids up from school and both her and I drop them off occasionally. 

I have the kids on a Monday night until 7:30pm, Thursday and Friday night and Saturday until 4pm. It has been like this for the last 16 months because of me having to live with my parents, having 3 young boys in the same bedroom has been difficult to say the least!

50/50
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#17
When you say Thursday and Friday night, do you mean from school until return to school next morning? (ie overnight and from after school on Thursday through to 4pm Saturday)? Every week? If so that kind of is shared care, just not 50/50. It's 4 nights out of 14 plus a couple of tea times. Maybe what you should ask for is as now but to stay over on Monday night instead of just for tea and to stay over from Thursday night through to Monday morning every other week. That is 7/14 a fortnight.

Rather than just email saying you want 50/50 have a look at some 50/50 care patterns that would work. Options could be 2-2-5-5 which would be two nights a week each plus every other week-end. So every week say you would have kids Monday and Tuesday nights and every other week-end you would have them Friday through to Wednesday (includes the weekly mon and tues nights). And your ex would have them every wed and thur night each week and every other week-end from thurs wed night through to Monday morning (includes the weekly wed and thur nights.

When writing your email, think about BIFF (brief, informative, friendly, formal) I think that's what it is. As if it was to a business colleague and not too personal. And don't get into an email to and fro argument afterwards. Because emails can be evidence. Send what you want to say. Wait for a response. Count to 10. Take time to think about her response and don't reply straight away or maybe not at all - keep her guessing as to your reaction if it's not positive.

How About
"Title: Care of our children

- Dear Ex name, I am just writing to discuss the ongoing care arrangements for the children. As you know I move into the new house on x date and the kids have enjoyed helping set it up. When we separated x months ago we agreed that we would have a 50/50 shared care pattern once I had a house and had moved out of my parents house. So I am now writing with suggestions as to how this might work and suggest the following:

As I currently have them after school on a Monday, I propose this continues but overnight until Tuesday morning and then again Tuesday night until Wednesday morning.
Instead of the current arrangement where they come to me every Thursday and Friday night until 4pm Saturday I propose we both have a full week-end with them, and they come to me Friday night through to Monday morning every other week-end.

This would mean they spend two nights a week with each of us - mon tues with me, wed thurs with you,and every other week-end with each of us and the week it is our week-end would be 5 consecutive nights. That way we would have a 2-2-5-5 pattern. Neither of us would go too long without seeing the children and they would get a good length of time with each of us so they feel settled in both houses. It would also mean there wouldn't be too many changeovers for them.

Regarding sharing the school holidays, we could discuss how this would work, for example agreeing certain weeks each, each year.

Let me know what you think. Regards. 50/50"

Or something like that in your own words? It is a good record of what was agreed in the past and what you have proposed and why, in case you need it.

She may just say no, as she already has. She will have got used to having them most of the time.Try and stay amicable about it and not get into a fight. A further email might end up being something like. "I realise you've got used to having them more of the time but as they get older they will want to do all kinds of things and we may both see a bit less of them, so having the care shared is just shared parenting, rather than having more time with the kids, and of course we can be flexible if a certain event comes up or something".
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#18
(03-21-2018, 02:11 PM)Hazy Wrote: You have the right ask for 50/50 and possibly achieve it as there doesn’t appear to be any compelling reasons why you cannot have this.

If it goes to court you would at minimum get a full every other weekend Friday to possibly Monday morning if you took them to school. Midweek overnight (1 or possibly two) the following week  and half of all school holidays as standard so what you are asking for is not much extra at all.

do you need to live in the same town for this?
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#19
(03-22-2018, 05:06 PM)Charlie7000 Wrote: When you say Thursday and Friday night, do you mean from school until return to school next morning?  (ie overnight and from after school on Thursday through to 4pm Saturday)?  Every week?  If so that kind of is shared care, just not 50/50. It's 4 nights out of 14 plus a couple of tea times.  Maybe what you should ask for is as now but to stay over on Monday night instead of just for tea and to stay over from Thursday night through to Monday morning every other week.  That is 7/14 a fortnight.

Rather than just email saying you want 50/50 have a look at some 50/50 care patterns that would work.  Options could be 2-2-5-5 which would be two nights a week each plus every other week-end.  So every week say you would have kids Monday and Tuesday nights and every other week-end you would have them Friday through to Wednesday (includes the weekly mon and tues nights).  And your ex would have them every wed and thur night each week and every other week-end from thurs wed night through to Monday morning (includes the weekly wed and thur nights.

When writing your email, think about BIFF (brief, informative, friendly, formal)  I think that's what it is.  As if it was to a business colleague and not too personal.  And don't get into an email to and fro argument afterwards.  Because emails can be evidence.  Send what you want to say.  Wait for a response.  Count to 10. Take time to think about her response and don't reply straight away or maybe not at all - keep her guessing as to your reaction if it's not positive.

How About
"Title:  Care of our children

- Dear Ex name, I am just writing to discuss the ongoing care arrangements for the children.  As you know I move into the new house on x date and the kids have enjoyed helping set it up.  When we separated x months ago we agreed that we would have a 50/50 shared care pattern once I had a house and had moved out of my parents house.  So I am now writing with suggestions as to how this might work and suggest the following:

As I currently have them after school on a Monday, I propose this continues but overnight until Tuesday morning and then again Tuesday night until Wednesday morning.
Instead of the current arrangement where they come to me every Thursday and Friday night until 4pm Saturday I propose we both have a full week-end with them, and they come to me Friday night through to Monday morning every other week-end.

This would mean they spend two nights a week with each of us - mon tues with me, wed thurs with you,and every other week-end with each of us and the week it is our week-end would be 5 consecutive nights.  That way we would have a 2-2-5-5 pattern.  Neither of us would go too long without seeing the children and they would get a good length of time with each of us so they feel settled in both houses.  It would also mean there wouldn't be too many changeovers for them.

Regarding sharing the school holidays, we could discuss how this would work, for example agreeing certain weeks each, each year.

Let me know what you think.  Regards. 50/50"

Or something like that in your own words?  It is a good record of what was agreed in the past and what you have proposed and why, in case you need it.

She may just say no, as she already has.  She will have got used to having them most of the time.Try and stay amicable about it and not get into a fight.  A further email might end up being something like.  "I realise you've got used to having them more of the time but as they get older they will want to do all kinds of things and we may both see a bit less of them, so having the care shared is just shared parenting, rather than having more time with the kids, and of course we can be flexible if a certain event comes up or something".

So my Father picks them up from school on a Monday and takes them to his until I get in from work then I drop them off at ex's at 7:30pm. Tuesday and Wednesday she has them day and night. Thursday after school my Father picks two up from school whilst the other is at Karate, ex's Father picks Karate kid up and drops him off at my Fathers and they all spend the night then I drop the little one off at breakfast club on Friday morning and my Father drops the other two off at school. Friday after school ex's Father picks all three up and gives them dinner then drops two off at my parents whilst taking one to football. I meet ex's Father at football after work and he leaves. After football I go back to parents and the kids stay with me until 4pm Saturday, during Saturday I take middle one to tennis, then little one to swimming and finally the eldest to Karate. That in essence is my schedule at the moment.

I've already drafted my email to ex which actually is very similar to what you have suggested. What I'm not going to get into is an argument, I've had enough misery in my life for the last two years and just want to look forward to my new house with the kids.

On a side note, since I already pay £400+ in CSM without actually going through the CSM what exactly should this cover because I can't find a definitive answer other than day to day care. So other than putting a roof over their heads and feeding them what else does this cover. What about wrap around care, sports activities, school trips, birthdays, Christmas etc. etc.

50/50

P.S. Some great advice on this site and I greatly appreciate it Smile
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#20
A 25 mile radius is often mentioned as a workable distance for shared care. Possibly a small amount of flexibility allowed.

What you have is a family based arrangement and there are no exact rules about what it covers. It is what you agree. You are pointed to the. CMS calculator as a guide only.

If paying via CMS it would be deemed fully inclusive then you meet all costs in your time with the kids and anything extra is totally at your discretion so you can say no to anything you do not agree with or no to everything that is consider extra. Entirely up to you. Many on here would recommend paying direct for good and services rather than hand over cash for extras.

My opinion on it is simple. If you pay an amount per month then she wants half for after school football for example then if the other half comes from the amount you have handed over you therefore effectively you pay it all don’t you? Best to set an amount that covers everything. She then covers everything i her time and you do the same in your time.

Many use this family based option to get more by getting a set amount plus half of everything and anything.

In theory a family based arrangement could involve her helping you out sometimes too but in practice that never happens even if the ex earns more than you. This is where it goes wrong. There is no appreciation of NRP’s costs at all here.

Christmas, well you’ll need kiddie stuff at your house so you could each buy your own gifts for them but when they are older and wanting mobiles phones etc you could agre to go half each perhaps. So many possibilities.
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