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Order ignored - where to go from here
#1
So after a lot of emailing and so on I got son here for a week at the beginning of the summer holidays after his absence during lockdown.  Ex is basically saying in emails the order doesn't work for her any more she can't comply and says go back to solicitors.  So she is continuing with the stance of - son can do what he likes, it's up to him.  Then tells him what to text me!  She has taken her holidays over my defined weeks.  I  was more concerned with just getting him here at the moment rather than going back to court - she clearly wants to push me into going to court again so she can apply to vary again and get the recital about son's wishes put into the order.

So I agreed to her having 3 weeks over my two weeks and have now written to arrange for him to come for the last two weeks.  Same excuse - she has no idea what his plans are but she knows he has plans with friends and he is planning to come to mine for some time before going back to school and she will get him to contact me.

He has no choice whatsover and we all know that.  In the past when I've asked him if he's fine with xyz weeks here and then said to ex - he's fine with that - he's come back with a sore ear and saying he doesn't want that. So he has no choice.  He is also slipping into a bit of an alienated mode when over there - and he's hormonal on top.

Basically if I do nothing there is no longer a court order - she gives me token bits of time (not enough) with son sending the message saying when he is coming.   Because of his age (he'll be 13 in 6 months) I am not sure I would have much of a chance in court - especially when he will say whatever she tells him to say.

So not sure what to do. If I go back to court it would have to be for residency saying she is opting out of all parenting and I would ensure he had healthy relationships with both parents. But I honestly don't think I can face the whole procedure for months and honestly don't know if I have much of a chance with Cafcass involved - and son will say whatever she tells him to say. I had two court hearings last year, a parent die and my other parent at death's door at the moment.
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#2
Any ideas on how to deal with these holiday weeks? My options at the moment are to write back and say - if she is not agreeing to the last two weeks then it has to revert to the order and I will be there to pick son up tomorrow for two weeks instead, as no agreement and I can facilitate any plans he has with friends. That wouldn't go down too well with son as he already told me he is doing something with friends this week - sleepovers etc - which may well be in her garden in a tent. So he might then genuinely refuse to come and say he has plans.
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#3
From what you wrote i am reading into it although maybe wrong that she isnt happy for you to have your son for 2 weeks. I think if you got for 1 week instead you will probably more likely have a text agreeing to it. She let you have 1 week at the start so likely to let you have 1 week at end. once in your care for the week you could then contact her asking for usual court order to resume
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#4
She is basically trying to reduce time for him here - probably to what she said she wanted 3 years ago before I went to court - which is two weeks holiday a year in summer and every other week end only. But only if he wants to come! Ie leading to alienation and zilch. Which is why I went to court.

There is a court order that says he lives here for half of all holiday periods. What she wants shouldn’t really be the issue.

If I write asking for a week then that is basically breaching the order and accepting permanent variation- and back to a Mother will
allow “reasonable contact” order.

I know he’s 12 and a half but. I think I am going to end up having to go back to court. But the priority right now is to get him here for long enough that he gets back to normal.
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#5
Its covid 19 and you did self isolate for a while. anything thats happened currently wont matter when u return to court. i would grab the week that you are likely able to get . then when school starts you can go back to court if need be. when school starts really you need to put a stop on son going home after school and before school. there is going to be a second wave potentially as well in the winter which could cause you problems as well
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#6
Yeah I know. She refuses point blank to follow the order with all kinds of contradictory reasons (nothing to do with Covid!) about her job has changed and she wants to vary the order and ordering me to get a solicitor to contact hers to sort that out. She refuses to agree anything. In the end I said agreement to changes in the order needs the consent of both. I agreed to her taking my two weeks and if she won't agree to him coming the last two weeks (half the holidays) then there is no agreement and it reverts to the terms of the court order (that is actually in my order - if not agreed in writing by both it reverts to the terms of the order). So said I would pick him up for the remaining two court ordered weeks (which are separate) next week and the last week and then 2 nights special day/birthday at the end. She just says blah blah order doesn't work for me - get solicitors to sort it out - recital says son's wishes - contact him.

I should have stuck to it and turned up on the court ordered weeks then it would have been a clear breach. But I messaged son and said - discussing with Mum about you coming here for the rest of your holidays and would like to pick you up for your usual two weeks here on x date and x date and a couple of nights over my birthday. Got a reply saying he wanted to stay there and come x date to x date (a week) and the day of my birthday.

I feel sick. It's not even a breach now. And I am now complicit in letting him telling me when he's coming . He knows and I know he was supposed to be here for another two weeks.

So 7 weeks holiday and he comes for two weeks and 2 days, split (if this week actually happens now as she could well say they've been abroad and in quarantine or something) - after being away for 4 months.

I think I have to go back to court. As next thing will be stopping midweek overnights because son doesn't want to.
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#7
Hey Charlie. As we had said a while back, your ex is setting it up so it all falls on the child's wishes, yet at the same time is 'working' the poor kid so that what he supposedly wishes is exactly what she wants.

You have been very patient and have tried hard to avoid more court involvement...but the situation seems to point towards your child being persuaded/manipulated to state that 'his wishes' are to drop the mid week with you, just as you say.

I think you need to become a lot more firm on defending and imposing the hard earned orders that you have in order to protect the relationship between your child and you.

Need to let her know firmly that you expect the orders to be followed. I understand and recall your concerns if the case went to court with Cafcass but also child wishes being manipulated etc.. but if you don't do anything it is already headed towards the result that you are worried might come in court! You have only to gain by trying to secure his time at home with you for the next few years..
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#8
Hi. Yes I was firm in correspondence today stating that it is a Child Arrangements order for residence with both parents and if he is not here for half the holidays it becomes a welfare issue. But she ain’t agreeing to anything. Just says I’m a controlling bully. Before lockdown I was managing to keep her on her toes and she was keeping to the order (although son was still under pressure) - apart from the school morning stuff.

After four months of lockdown she is raring to go and taking advantage of his age etc. I am not so concerned about a section 7 this time. Last time I messed up - my Mother died the week before the hearing - should have adjourned - son was going through hell and his first term at school .

Thing is she would do it again - she would stop at nothing if she thought she might lose a court case and the only way to get me to back off is to put son through hell. And I bet she would. Meanwhile she treats him like a Prince - and an adult - lots of freedom (too much - it verges on neglect). I cannot see them transferring residency though when Cafcass and a Judge go along with the idea that you can’t force a near teenager to go. I probably don’t have enough evidence of manipulation.
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#9
I agree you probably don't have a very strong case on the subject of interference/manipulation. To be more accurate, you probably don't have enough evidence of a high degree or very harmful manipulation. Of course this is all going on case law and what courts deem is 'high level' or 'harmful', because to normal parents it is plainly harmful and not what a good and decent parents does.

On the same case law basis, your case does not appear to be a change of residency one mate. Just based on the facts and being guided by the case law in terms of level and threshold of manipulation/harm but also the main background. But details can make a difference as can having a very good Cafcass officer.

You just have to do what is available to you to try to secure at least the existing court orders are followed. Might a 50/50 one week each option work for you sorry I cant recall off the top of my head? The court may prefer this option at your boy's age. It provides clarity and less movements and less opportunity for interference by the ex.
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#10
(07-30-2020, 10:40 PM)Charlie7000 Wrote: Hi.  Yes I was firm in correspondence today stating that it is a Child Arrangements order for residence with both parents and if he is not here for half the holidays it becomes a welfare issue.  But she ain’t agreeing to anything.  Just says I’m a controlling bully.  Before lockdown I was managing to keep her on her toes and she was keeping to the order (although son was still under pressure) - apart from the school morning stuff.

After four months of lockdown she is raring to go and taking advantage of his age etc.  I am not so concerned about a section 7 this time.  Last time I messed up - my Mother died the week before the hearing - should have adjourned - son was going through hell and his first term at school .

Thing is she would do it again - she would stop at nothing if she thought she might lose a court case and the only way to get me to back off is to put son through hell.  And I bet she would.  Meanwhile she treats him like a Prince - and an adult - lots of freedom (too much - it verges on neglect).  I cannot see them transferring residency though when Cafcass and a Judge go along with the idea that you can’t force a near teenager to go.  I probably don’t have enough evidence of manipulation.

I do not have the time to go over all the details, but from what I am seeing

a, you had to reduce contact to follow goverment guildlines

b, she is not following the order when it can be done.

In terms of you not getting contact, you should be able to evidance that you have stated you want your contact as per the order, and if you do not get it, file a C79, Application To Enforce.

She has every right to go back to her Solicitors if she says the current order is no longer workable, BUT UNTIL ITS CHANGED BY COURT OR BY AGREEMENT, IT STILL STANDS. She would need to make an application to vary, and she would have to show significant reason that there is a NEW ISSUE, NOT KNOWN AT THE TIME THE LAST ORDER WAS MADE, why it needs to be looked at again.
Posts made by me are my opinion and any factual information should be checked out. If you do not have a Solicitor, often your local CAB can get you some initial advice.
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