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Likelihood of order breaches and mental health problems leading to residency change?
#1
Hi, All.
I have two children (Daughter 4 and Son 2) and have not seen them in about three months despite having a contact order which stipulates an overnight a week.

Some background:
  • My ex has had mental health issues which in the past have led her to attempt suicide, attempt to separate the children so we raise one each, after we moved to NZ as a family come back for a holiday only to text me later 'I'm not returning' (I had to stop work, turn our shipping around and chase them back to the UK) abuse me and my new lady (been together around 6 months) and then beg for me to come back to her/declare undying love etc (we have gone to the police about these) and other erratic behaviours.
  • She has never had any form of rehabilitation for these issues, including medication
  • The court process for us to agree on residency etc did not go to full trial, we were guided to a decision by a judge over three (exciting...) court appearances.
  • The order was made on the 5/11/2015 (nearly six months ago) and first overnight stay was to be mid December
I introduced my children to my new girlfriend over a handful of meetings. We went to the zoo, we all baked a cake together and we visited her for lunch. I thought fairly harmless and slow introductions to get them used to Dad's new friend....I received a bunch of angry messages saying I would never see my kids again because I had had them around that *insert delightful term here*. Initially, this was a straight up you'll never see them again, take me to court, I don't care.

Then things got a bit weird. 

She began to say that my Daughter was performing a kind of self harm. What this is has not been made clear despite asking. SO upset was she at being around my new girl that she was exhibiting concerning behavioural traits. I am convinced this is untrue, and stems from her inability to come to terms with the fact we will never reunite (been apart almost two years). The reason I think this are: she told me the nursery had noticed and referred her to a therapist - I called them and they were horrified and knew nothing of the sort and sent me all their observations which don't include anything of concern, she apparently still hasn't been admitted to see a therapist (I would have thought this a priority) and I had never seen this behaviour or noticed any marks on her when she was allowed to visit in Dec. My ex has in the past and during this whole episode told me I must reply to a letter from her lawyers saying I agree never to have the children around my sister (they don't get on), sometimes it's my family and lately it's been my family and my girlfriend or sometimes will say I can see them if I agree to see them only by myself.

I wanted to know if anyone could help me understand their experiences of reversing residency orders and achieving custody. I understand there are time considerations, they assess the impact on the children and they would also try and assess whether or not she can meet their needs - I am keen to understand what this means in practice.

Does it happen? How severe/long do breaches have to be before actions are taken. What effective ways are there of proving alienation?
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#2
(04-04-2016, 12:03 PM)Ronfuego Wrote: Hi, All.
I have two children (Daughter 4 and Son 2) and have not seen them in about three months despite having a contact order which stipulates an overnight a week.

Some background:
  • My ex has had mental health issues which in the past have led her to attempt suicide, attempt to separate the children so we raise one each, after we moved to NZ as a family come back for a holiday only to text me later 'I'm not returning' (I had to stop work, turn our shipping around and chase them back to the UK) abuse me and my new lady (been together around 6 months) and then beg for me to come back to her/declare undying love etc (we have gone to the police about these) and other erratic behaviours.
  • She has never had any form of rehabilitation for these issues, including medication
  • The court process for us to agree on residency etc did not go to full trial, we were guided to a decision by a judge over three (exciting...) court appearances.
  • The order was made on the 5/11/2015 (nearly six months ago) and first overnight stay was to be mid December
I introduced my children to my new girlfriend over a handful of meetings. We went to the zoo, we all baked a cake together and we visited her for lunch. I thought fairly harmless and slow introductions to get them used to Dad's new friend....I received a bunch of angry messages saying I would never see my kids again because I had had them around that *insert delightful term here*. Initially, this was a straight up you'll never see them again, take me to court, I don't care.

Then things got a bit weird. 

She began to say that my Daughter was performing a kind of self harm. What this is has not been made clear despite asking. SO upset was she at being around my new girl that she was exhibiting concerning behavioural traits. I am convinced this is untrue, and stems from her inability to come to terms with the fact we will never reunite (been apart almost two years). The reason I think this are: she told me the nursery had noticed and referred her to a therapist - I called them and they were horrified and knew nothing of the sort and sent me all their observations which don't include anything of concern, she apparently still hasn't been admitted to see a therapist (I would have thought this a priority) and I had never seen this behaviour or noticed any marks on her when she was allowed to visit in Dec. My ex has in the past and during this whole episode told me I must reply to a letter from her lawyers saying I agree never to have the children around my sister (they don't get on), sometimes it's my family and lately it's been my family and my girlfriend or sometimes will say I can see them if I agree to see them only by myself.

I wanted to know if anyone could help me understand their experiences of reversing residency orders and achieving custody. I understand there are time considerations, they assess the impact on the children and they would also try and assess whether or not she can meet their needs - I am keen to understand what this means in practice.

Does it happen? How severe/long do breaches have to be before actions are taken. What effective ways are there of proving alienation?

Once any aspect of the order was not kept to, you are able to make an application for enforcement.

If keeping the child from set people is not part of the order, its up to you if you want to agree to it or not. If you do not, she can apply for prohibited steps, but it will be up to her to prove reasons why she does not want it.

There is several ways to get the decision looked at again, and in this case if you can prove significant changes since the final hearing, you can go back on an application to vary, what is faster than starting from scratch.
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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