• Page:
  • 1

TOPIC: Child arrangement order - is it worth the risk?

Child arrangement order - is it worth the risk? 3 years 6 months ago #72669

Hi. I filed for divorce 4 weeks ago citing both unreasonable behaviour and adultery as grounds. I was lucky enough to have a signed admission of guilt from my soon to be ex wife. My main issues are not with the divorce itself but with the aftermath, particularly in relation to the children and secondly the home/financial issues. My wife was happy to go 50/50 split across childcare and finances which originally I was advised was a good deal and we should look to put this forward in mediation and eventually a court order amicably. Unfortunately, in the last 4 weeks my wife has become a different person and is very difficult to deal with in terms of moving forward. For the first week after divorce, she left the property on 4 occasions (twice more to commit adultery) before the children were even in bed and spent the entire weekend away from them. Although I loved my alone time with the boys (4&5), I felt this was not the correct way a mother behaves. After going to the doctors and advising them that my wife had recently smacked our boys a referral to social services happened and my wife was referred to the doctors. Miraculously she came out of this advising me that both the doctors and social services were now under the impression it was my fault.
Things calmed down for a few days until she started an online relationship with a man. During this time we stupidly had an intimate encounter and she used this against me citing 'I'm sure I still have your DNA on me, I could tell the police you raped me'. She has been neglecting our children and their care whilst I have been in work and spends 16 hours a day on the internet and my children have now not really spent a day out with her in a month. She had self-harmed (for attention) with them in the house and this was reported but again she managed to talk her way out of the situation. Things came to a head this week. On Tuesday, after speaking with a solicitor I broached the subject of mediation again. At 7pm, she said she needed space to think about it which I was happy with. She left the property and did not return until 3am having spent the night at another man’s house. That's the lowest I've ever felt, I never thought she would stoop that low. On Wednesday she came back from the pub at 11pm and tried to remove my kids from bed at 23:00hrs. They had decided to sleep in my bed for comfort and I asked her to stop it. Eventually the police were called; she falsely accused me of assault and was taken to her mother’s by the police. The policeman remarked to me ' hopefully this will be the moment she realises what she’s doing'. No such luck, she came home the next day and blamed the situation on me. She asked to go away in a few weeks to clear her head and I told her she could go to a friend’s house until Monday if she wished. I thought this was a good compromise as surely it was better to do it now than wait. She used this time instead to go to see her internet boyfriend and spent the weekend with him(committing adultery, although she denies this on advice from her mother), when she returned she was not on time for me to go to work and therefore the night before I arranged childcare. When she returned she called me and asked where the boys were. I advised they were safe and would be home at 6pm. She called the police and I received a call, an overzealous policeman telling me what I had done was wrong and in ‘his court’ I would be denying the mother her children, which was not true I was getting them care when she was not around. I spoke with my solicitor who stated this was not correct information provided the policeman and I was in the right. I had phone social services myself that morning to inform them of my concerns
I have looked into child arrangement orders, particularly to remove my wife from the property due to the instability and irrational behaviour. The boy’s school is close, my aunty and Nan live on the same street and I can afford to keep the payments on the house and bills alone. My main worry is that my wife has not worked since September, has no income barring benefits and has managed to talk her way around family, professionals and even the police. I am worried this could backfire. I may be too close to the situation and I am clearly emotionally involved in this but I feel my kids are better off away from my wife at this time, in the state of mind she is in. Does anyone have any advice? Is it worth the risk for a residence order or should I be pushing for mediation ASAP instead (appt book in for 26th Feb)?
BTW, my in-laws are assisting in my wife’s behaviour although they don’t agree with it. My mother in law in particular is placing herself in my home on a regular basis and applying pressure and accusations.

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

Child arrangement order - is it worth the risk? 3 years 6 months ago #72670

Hi There,
.
Firstly I would make a very accurate diary of events, not everything including anything you said to your ex that wasn't nice, even if you swore or were abusive towards her as that will show honesty in your notes, this will help you later on, and keep adding to it, so every time she has neglected the children to be with another man, when she told you she would cry rape, anything like that will start to build a picture.
.
As far as I am aware you can apply for a residency order without having to go through mediation, though I may be corrected on that, if you apply for residency, then work out a plan to cover every aspect of caring for your children, cover what will happen, if they are off school ill, cover school holidays and anything else you can think of, show you have the means to look after them finacially and more importantly, emotionally.
.
It seems to me that your ex is starting to live her own life before she has even got to the point of being properly single, I think that will help your case as she has used time she should be with the children to spend time with another man.
.
You have already been in contact with SS which is good as they will have a record of this, I wouldn't worry too much about the call from the police, as you have ben advised, I don't think that what they said was correct, your ex didn't come home when she should have to look after them and you made arrangements so you could go to work, the only question that may be asked is why you wouldn't tell her where they were so be ready to answer that.
.
I think it would be worth adding into the application for residency a plan of when your ex will have time with the children, again this will show that you are being reasonable and not trying to deprive the children of time with thier mum.
.
Hopefully this helps.
.
GTTS

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

Child arrangement order - is it worth the risk? 3 years 6 months ago #72671

Hi Many thanks for that. I have documented everything that has gone on from my side. I have some records I need to update regarding the things I have said as you mention. It is a daily occurrence in terms of the flaunting of the situation and the fact she has had three partners since 14th January 2016, one on multiple occasions, not to mention the telephone/online relationships. There have been times where I have told her to grow up and take some responsibility and have threatened to see a solicitor etc. For honesty purposes I agree it is best to come clean about this as well.

I think you're idea of a plan for mum is a great one. I don't want to deny my boys mum time, I want their time to be special and quality time together. As things are right now that is not happening.

In terms of finances, because of the mind-set of my wife, my solicitor advised that all overdrafts in joint names were to be stopped which I arranged. She also advised that my finances need to be separate and I was to make sure all bills were paid. I have therefore left our joint account with no outgoings but all benefits going in so that we both have access to money for the children. I am also topping the account up with extra funds when possible so that mum is not without money. I have been advised this is a good strategy as I ensure bills remain paid and no one is without. However, my wife keeps telling me its financial abuse and unfair. What are your thoughts on this? Was this a reasonable step as suggested by my solicitor?

Thanks

MH

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

Child arrangement order - is it worth the risk? 3 years 6 months ago #72673

Hi,
.
I think this is a reasonable step, your not keeping money from her, but you are ensuring that bills are paid so that you keep a roof over you're childrens heads and that they have what they need.
.
I would be a little careful, when it comes to applying for the residency order, try not to quote the number of guys you ex has been with since, keep things factual around the fact she has neglected the children, you can mention the reason is other men, but gloss over it and remain focused on the childrens need for care rather than what your ex has been doing instead of being there for them, you risk coming accross as bitter about her being with other men rather than being concerned about your childrens well being.
.
GTTS

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

Child arrangement order - is it worth the risk? 3 years 6 months ago #72675

  • Mojo
  • Mojo's Avatar
  • Offline
  • Moderator
  • Moderator
  • Posts: 8528
  • Thank you received: 1763
Hi there

Unfortunately residence orders are no longer in place, you would need to apply for a child arrangements order for residence and you would need to attend mediation beforehand. I think GTTS may have been thinking of an urgent application, mediation isn't mandatory in that case. To apply for an urgent order there would need to be serious risks to the children and I'm not sure your situation would apply.

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

DadTalk Moderator... I'm not legally trained and my responses are my own views based on my experiences of the family court. I have plenty of common sense and can offer you emotional support and guide you to answers.

Child arrangement order - is it worth the risk? 3 years 6 months ago #72732

Mojo wrote: Hi there

Unfortunately residence orders are no longer in place, you would need to apply for a child arrangements order for residence and you would need to attend mediation beforehand. I think GTTS may have been thinking of an urgent application, mediation isn't mandatory in that case. To apply for an urgent order there would need to be serious risks to the children and I'm not sure your situation would apply.

.
.
.
Happy to be corrected Mojo's knowledge on this is better than mine :dry:
.
GTTS

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

Child arrangement order - is it worth the risk? 3 years 4 months ago #73973

You could argue the move drunk acts and odd movements of not being their when the children need her to be their ( as agreed ) is urgent in that the children are losing out in the mean time and she is accusing the only parent that is caring for them to be unfairly abused ( mental abuse ) and thus making the relationship harder

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

Child arrangement order - is it worth the risk? 3 years 4 months ago #73985

  • Yoda
  • Yoda's Avatar
  • Offline
  • Moderator
  • Moderator
  • Posts: 2563
  • Thank you received: 417
You've had good advice about keeping a diary of events here. Personally I would advise that you get mediation started as it is mandatory to attempt before making any court applications. I don't think the court would consider an urgent application in this scenario which would make you exempt from mediation.

www.nfm.org.uk/

With the situation as you have described, I do think it will be necessary to apply for a Child Arrangement Order to sort out matters for the children. Contact and Finances are separate issues and not dealt with during the same proceedings. We can help answer questions on contact matters and some basic financial issues but would strongly advise taking legal advice on the financial and property side.

Good luck

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

DAD.info Moderator

I have several years experience supporting parents in family proceedings as a McKenzie Friend. I am, however, not a lawyer or barrister and my responses are based on my own opinions or experiences of the family court.
  • Page:
  • 1