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NSW Accused of Domestic Violence - Supervised Visitation and Interim Orders?

Discussion in 'Family Law Forum' started by DadonaMission, 23 July 2015.

  1. DadonaMission

    DadonaMission Well-Known Member

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    Hello,

    My (ex) wife has filed in the Federal Circuit Court and falsely accused me of child abuse and family violence hence bypassing mandatory mediation. No evidence at all. Her affidavit is ridiculous and all lies. We have produced a powerful response (affidavit) which proves it.

    She is applying for interim orders whereby I am able only to spend 4 hours per fortnight of supervised visitation (by her family) and her solicitor has offered this before the hearing. My lawyer told me not to accept supervised visitation. Instead we seek 4 nights/fortnight as interim orders and our Risk Notice is blank.

    Importantly the children have been kept from me for nearly 2 months.

    I have a preliminary police ADVO (domestic violence) hanging over my head between my wife and I where I picked up her mobile phone and left the house and she called the police. I'm fighting this but she and the police are trying any which way they can to have it extended to include the children.

    For example, after 6 weeks of not seeing them, my mother and I attended the younger children's child care centre but they weren't there. We drove together in a two seater car, and yet, we have been reported to police for attempting to abduct the children. There is no order that I can't see the children.

    I went to my eldest school in the morning after 6 weeks and found out she's been withdrawn from school until further notice (wife never told me) for fear of abduction probably. Wife called the police.

    I called my daughters after school activity and my wife phoned the police and said that I'm stalking her by doing this. The police disagreed with this but they are pursuing the childcare abduction incident to extend ADVO.

    I have just read part of a book on the topic called Breaking Up. That book says that at the interim hearing if child abuse or family abuse is claimed by the other party in any unproved form the judge will have no choice to order supervised visitation. Is this true?

    How long would me and the children have to do supervised visitation for until her rubbish is disproven? Do we have to wait until the final orders? What will happen?

    Supervised visitation for only 4 hours a fortnight will dissolve my strong relationship and will confuse my children aged 11, 4, 3. It is also expensive at $380 for 3 hours. I don't have direct blood relatives in NSW.

    Thanks.
     
  2. AllForHer

    AllForHer Well-Known Member

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    Unfortunately, it is often true that a judge has to order supervised time between parent and child in the interim for two reasons. The first is because they have to err on the side of the caution while the evidence remains untested just in case there is a risk (which, of course, is hardly ever the case). The second is to ensure you're not subject to any further false allegations.

    I agree with your solicitor that you should not agree to supervised time with the kids, because doing so is almost like a pseudo admission of guilt. However, I also implore you to exercise patience. If supervised time is ordered, take it as an opportunity to keep seeing the kids, and try to keep your chin up. Let the contact centre do the job of disproving your ex's allegations. If the report from the contact centre is healthy and shows a positive, safe relationship, the court will be more likely to order unsupervised time at future interim hearings. How long this takes is a question nobody can answer. It's unpredictable. But if you give the court no reason to suspect the wife may be a credible witness regarding the family violence allegations, then there's no reason not to order unsupervised time. It just might take a little while, that's all.

    Seek interim orders that both parents attend a family dispute resolution conference and a post-separation parenting course. The court doesn't like parents who bypass those fundamental steps, and you will be seen to be looking for ways to work with her to resolve the parenting dispute outside of court. You could also request the mother pay half or all of the costs of the contact centre, if it is ordered.

    I hope this helps.
     
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  3. DadonaMission

    DadonaMission Well-Known Member

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    Our evidence shows that she is a liar. I will be asking for costs to be paid. This was not necessary and we could have done mediation. Frankly this has and will continue to put me through hell. It's not fair that women can abuse the system like this.

    Can I instead ask a family member or friend to be present at my home? What are normally the requirements of the supervision?

    Are we talking 6 months, a year or more before the claims are tested? What hearings are after the interim? Does it go straight to final?

    Thanks.
     
  4. AllForHer

    AllForHer Well-Known Member

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    If the court orders supervised time, I would highly recommend asking that a family member or friend be present at your home, rather than have supervised time with the mother's family. Realistically, if the mother hasn't requested contact at a contact centre, then the matter of who supervises is not the main concern, so she shouldn't raise issue with it being someone you know, rather than someone she chooses (though I would wager this probably will be an issue, all the same).

    I would argue it is probably better for the kids to be at your home with a friend or family member present as it will ensure they are not at risk of exposure to conflict that might be imposed by any hostility the mother's family might feel toward you following the divorce. It will also facilitate the children developing a comfortable connection with your home, enabling them to have a more meaningful relationship with you as their father.

    The time frame, as I said, is an unknown quantity. Using your case as an example, you might have the first interim hearing in August and supervised time might be ordered with another interim hearing set for November. If, between August and November, no further incidents of conflict arise, you might request further interim orders for unsupervised time and the court might order it until the next mention in, say, February. If the mother continues to contest unsupervised time, even if no incidents have occurred during supervised time, then it might raise questions against her.

    I'm not sure if any of this helps, I can only provide general knowledge and parenting cases are so hard to predict, particularly in terms of time frames. In my husband's case, he filed an initiating application in May, had interim hearings in June, September and December, a final trial date then set for March, and then three weeks before the hearing, his ex-wife's solicitor sent a proposal for settlement of equal time care arrangements, despite the volumes of affidavits filed by her proclaiming him to be an unfit parent and seeking alternate weekends. In other cases, settlement never comes close and trial happens after three years of crossfire.

    But you will be glad to know that the court often does transition kids from supervised time with a parent to unsupervised time during interim hearings. Just make sure you have don't give the court any reason not to do so while supervised time is taking place.

    And remember - supervised time might not be ordered at all! There's absolutely no way of knowing.

    Do you know who your judge is?
     
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  5. DadonaMission

    DadonaMission Well-Known Member

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    Wow that is a long time. My relationship with them will be much diminished. I haven't seen them in 2 months now. I can't go near them as she's too dangerous and was hoping that the law and courts would start protecting me from her.

    She has proposed supervised visitation of 4 hours per fortnight with her father and brother or with a contact service. Certainly I would never have contact under the supervision of her family. I don't have family here permanently but could arrange something.

    Another solicitor suggested that I should start supervised visitation with a contact service and then pay for them to do reports.

    Fortnightly contact with my 3 children aged 11, 4 and 3 is not often enough. It's nearly $400 per visit for contact service but I'll get the money if I have to.

    So 3 months between hearings that is a long time under these conditions. After the first interim hearing they will read the affidavits and cross-examine? I wonder what will happen when they determine she's lied.

    Why do I have to prove anything with the supervised contact? So ridiculous.

    Thanks again.
     
  6. DadonaMission

    DadonaMission Well-Known Member

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    First hearing at Federal Circuit Court at Parramatta. My solicitor says it could be Judge [D] [Moderator Redacted - Community Guidelines]. She says that's a good draw card for us.
     
  7. RosieR

    RosieR Active Member

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    My ex partner (male) did the same to me. Accused me and my new hubby of physically and sexually abusing my 4 children whilst in my care. I left my ex because of true domestic violence and didn't want our 4 boys raised in that negative environment.

    My ex promised revenge and I went from the children living with us and seeing him each f/night plus any extra time to 1st set of interim orders saw me restricting the children from seeing their stepdad (who they adored). He disputed at 2nd hearing saying I breached and brought the kids into contact with him (which i never did). Judge palmed it off.

    Then final hearing went for 6 days, included an ICL and lies upon lies in my exs affidavits and numerous DOCS/JIRTS interviews which did not disclose any sexual harm (the path he was leaning toward). I lost my children altogether. Only to be seen under supervised conditions in a centre once a fortnight.

    Ex gave the supervisor such a hard time he packed it in any my boys (aged 10, 8, 6 & 4) haven't seen me since Oct 26, 2014 ... 9 months. I get 1 phone call a week which my ex interferes with on most occasions & has on speaker phone.

    There has been 23 breaches of the orders in 12 months. I wake up every day and wonder how the hell this could have happened. I have to switch off and concentrate on our twins girls (now 15 months old) otherwise id be in a mental asylum... it's heartbreaking.... I wish you all the luck in the world but don't ever presume. I and hubby were completely innocent ... we lost the children ... life is just not the same anymore.
     
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  8. DadonaMission

    DadonaMission Well-Known Member

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    RosieR, sorry to hear that. You're the mother and the court ordered you no contact except phone calls?

    Sounds like the court must have proved something pretty terrible happened really..
     
  9. RosieR

    RosieR Active Member

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    Court will be an eye opener for you ... good luck
     
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  10. AllForHer

    AllForHer Well-Known Member

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    Sorry, I didn't realise that saying who the Judge is was against forum rules (sorry, moderator).

    You could consider supervised contact at a contact centre - reports from the supervisors are often good to have as they will express their observations and views about whether or not there are any observable reasons why unsupervised time shouldn't be ordered. But it's probably a good idea to let the court decide in the first instance - maintain your view that it's in the children's best interests to spend time with you four nights a fortnight, if not more, because if the mother's arguments are not genuine, then that truly is what's best for them.

    As an added note to one of your questions, the evidence is not tested until final hearing, which is when cross-examination takes place. This can be a long time between filing the initiating application and trial date, but the court recognises proceedings take time and circumstances can change, which is why interim orders are made.

    I agree with RosieR - don't ever presume to what the court will decide, but I will add that I have always found the court to be well-reasoned in its judgement of what's best for the kids.
     
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