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Holidays/ quality time
#1
So , I have my two year old every other weekend , (not during the week due to the distance) and the CAO has been in place since December , all going fairly well  but cant wait to get more time as 12 days in-between is  too long. Usual stuff tho , the ex will not drive to any of the drop offs saying she has no vehicle ( I know she has ) .The order states that The mother must make sure that the father spends time with the father on these specific dates etc , one of which states , "each fathers day " I live an hour and a half away and I was so looking forward to spending most of the day with my little one, heres the rub tho, its not my weekend and although the ex has read the order she stated that it does not specify anything and that I can spend 2 hours with my daughter not because she has to let me , but through the goodness of her heart ! and I can take it or leave it. Cant believe just how spiteful and bitter some women can be. I have asked that I should be able to spend longer than this as the travel up and back should be taken into consideration.
Also , in my CAO it says that when my daughter attends nursery that" extra time is to be added during the holidays." This cannot be far off, but was really hoping to get the ex to agree to quality time with our daughter and not to go back to court and all that it entails to vary the order. It is very apparent and obvious now tho that because it doesnt specify exactly what amount of holidays ,and the sheer bloody mindedness of the ex she can say one extra day in the summer hols will suffice  for example if she so wants...  So ,  if I was to go through he courts again, would I get half the holidays ( xmas, Whitsun, easter and summer hols) if I started it now , or should I wait until she is in nursery as the order states ? I think I would have to do the mediation and cafcass thing again probably ? I have spoken to a friend that is a solicitor and they were very confident that as my daughter  is now over two (just ) that I would get the hols.  I also run the risk of  not being able to see my daughter whilst awaiting a court date as  the ex would withhold contact just to be spiteful( even tho this would  be clear breaches) this would break me, again, damned if I do and damned if I don't. I am nothing but pleasant an amiable in all communications, but some people just cant help themselves and are toxic.
Any advice much appreciated , thanks
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#2
(06-14-2018, 03:50 PM)Blackheath Wrote: So , I have my two year old every other weekend , (not during the week due to the distance) and the CAO has been in place since December , all going fairly well  but cant wait to get more time as 12 days in-between is  too long. Usual stuff tho , the ex will not drive to any of the drop offs saying she has no vehicle ( I know she has ) .The order states that The mother must make sure that the father spends time with the father on these specific dates etc , one of which states , "each fathers day " I live an hour and a half away and I was so looking forward to spending most of the day with my little one, heres the rub tho, its not my weekend and although the ex has read the order she stated that it does not specify anything and that I can spend 2 hours with my daughter not because she has to let me , but through the goodness of her heart ! and I can take it or leave it. Cant believe just how spiteful and bitter some women can be. I have asked that I should be able to spend longer than this as the travel up and back should be taken into consideration.
Also , in my CAO it says that when my daughter attends nursery that" extra time is to be added during the holidays." This cannot be far off, but was really hoping to get the ex to agree to quality time with our daughter and not to go back to court and all that it entails to vary the order. It is very apparent and obvious now tho that because it doesnt specify exactly what amount of holidays ,and the sheer bloody mindedness of the ex she can say one extra day in the summer hols will suffice  for example if she so wants...  So ,  if I was to go through he courts again, would I get half the holidays ( xmas, Whitsun, easter and summer hols) if I started it now , or should I wait until she is in nursery as the order states ? I think I would have to do the mediation and cafcass thing again probably ? I have spoken to a friend that is a solicitor and they were very confident that as my daughter  is now over two (just ) that I would get the hols.  I also run the risk of  not being able to see my daughter whilst awaiting a court date as  the ex would withhold contact just to be spiteful( even tho this would  be clear breaches) this would break me, again, damned if I do and damned if I don't. I am nothing but pleasant an amiable in all communications, but some people just cant help themselves and are toxic.
Any advice much appreciated , thanks

Hi mate, unfortunately the courts like to make orders that are open to interpretation and usually the mothers will interpret it how they want and tell you thats how it is. The courts do this because they want and hope that you will both act in the childs best interests and they will not have to put their heads on the block and make an order for it all to happen. If she will not agree you only really have one option and thats to go back and vary the order and get a specific order put in place. You do run a high risk that she will stop all contact and maybe even start throwing accusations about in order to try and stop you getting what you want. 

I get what you are saying though, my ex things she is turning up to contact out of the goodness of her heart too, she doesnt have to but she does and i should be grateful to her for it. My daughter is still only 18 months old and i have a final hearing in August. I am asking for a progressive contact working upto at least 6/14 days or ever 50/50 if i can get it. 

Usually if you can do it the courts would give you half the quality time, every other weekend and half holidays. You say you have your child every other weekend? Do you have them overnight?
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#3
Hi there , thanks for your reply , yes I pick my little girl up at 12 midday on every other Friday and she stays with me until Sunday when I bring her back to the door at 4 pm . It is so difficult as you say , I may run the risk of not seeing her for a while while waiting for court and thus disrupting the familiar routine that she is now so used to , or do I take the softly softly approach and pussyfoot around the ex and hopefully gradually get the holidays that I'm entitled to through asking directly. I know it's not worth going back to court just for the fathers day thing tho. As you said , they interpret the wording because it's not specific enough, but it's really sad that in the end it's the child that misses out every time .
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#4
What exactly is the wording where it says "each Fathers Day" - do you have the whole line/paragraph because it depends what it says before as to whether it is the whole day. "Each Fathers Day" sounds like the whole day to me - because Fathers Day is a day. "Spends time with" is just the new word for contact. So if it was in the old wording it would say child would have contact with Father each Fathers day. Even then it doesn't say how much. I think it's intended to mean the whole day, but as it's on Sunday the best you can do right now is accept what's offered. At least she isn't asking you to swap the time back on your week-end. Although maybe you could offer that in return for the full day? Send a brief email or somethign and say as you have to travel so far, you'd appreciate swapping a day so you could have the whole day.

I think it does sound like you will need to apply to vary at some point though - your current order was probably not very specific because of your daugher's age. But that really is far too vague if it doesn't specify how much extra time in the holidays.

You would want to be asking for a defined order (which is when days, times etc are specified). I had to do that after a woolly first order. I now have a list of special days which include Mothers Day, Fathers Day, child's birthday and both parents birthdays - and are a full day from 5pm the night before through to 9am the morning after - eg two nights and a full day.

It's probably best to wait till she starts at nursery if that isn't too long, because then it can work around the nursery schedule and also include progression to a long term schedule for when she's at school.

As you'd have to do mediation first you might be able to get it agreed - if the mediator is good - and get it in a consent order which means you wouldn't need to go back to vary - an agreement could be stamped as a consent order. A good mediator would tell her you would get xyz if you went to court so she might as well agree to it. Before mediation you could write a detailed parenting plan (ie everything you'd like to be in an agreement) and use that as a basis for negotiations and for the mediator to work with. If a parenting plan can be agreed in detail that could be turned into a consent order.
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#5
Thanks Charlie, it says in the order, " it is ordered that " and " the mother must make sure that the father spends time as follows " .." each fathers day " . and " contact with " I can just wait until she is in nursery like you say and hope she attends mediation this time , that sounds a lot better than having to go back to court .
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