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NSW amending court orders in order to relocate

Discussion in 'Family Law Forum' started by MummyOf2, 14 February 2018.

  1. MummyOf2

    MummyOf2 Well-Known Member

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    My ex moved to a town two hours away from our son a few years ago.
    Just over a year ago I moved to that town so my son could spend more time with his father.
    As soon as I moved here my ex's wife refused to give my son back.
    I took them to court and got orders stating that my son lives with me and my ex gets visitation.
    Because of my horrible experience in this town, the fact that I have no family or friends here and there are no options in a rural town for work I have decided I want to move back home to my family.
    My ex has two months notice before I move so that we can come to a new agreement to have the current orders amended and turned into new orders.
    Our current orders are in a two week rotation; week 1 Tuesday afternoon from after school until 7:30pm and Friday from after school until Monday before school. Week 2 Tuesday from after school until Wednesday before school. He gets half holidays and overnight on special occasions. We also share Christmas day with travel between our homes during the day.
    Since the orders were made my ex has asked me to pick our son up from school every single visitation for the past few months. Before that my ex forgot to pick our son up from school twice and I had to rush to the school twice. He has asked for me to make changes to pickup times during the holidays. He has given up his Tuesday overnights and is now only doing until 7:30pm on both Tuesdays. My ex's wife has defamed my husband to the locals. My ex and his wife have ignored orders not to discuss court matters and parental disputes with my son and have been asking him to keep secrets from me. My ex has sent paperwork to school with my son to get my personal details, medicare etc, instead of coming and talking to me. My ex and his wife have caused a lot of trouble for my family.
    I have written up an offer/proposed parenting plan.
    I am offering to meet him halfway for changeovers, 1 hour from the town I live in now and 1 hour from the town I am moving to.
    I am making sure he still gets every second weekend from after school Friday to late Sunday night.
    I am making sure he still gets half holidays.
    Instead of overnight on special occasions I am offering to give him a whole weekend from after school Friday to late Sunday night since my son will not be able to go away overnight on school days.
    I am asking for Christmas and Easter to be rotational, every second year we have our son for Christmas and Easter, and have offered for him to have both straight of the bat this year as a show of good faith.
    I have offered to pay for all my sons school needs since I am the one that wants to move back home.
    My ex has gone and told our son that I have broken the law, that he has worded legal letters against me and that my son wasn't allowed to tell me about it. I am upset that he is trying to manipulate my son this way but am trying to find a way to reason with my ex for our sons benefit instead of fighting.
    what advise can I get in regards to relocation and how best to go about relocating without ending up in court over a mere 2 hours distance, a mere 1 hour of travel for each of us. What can I say to my ex to help him understand that the kids and I need to be around family and that being isolated in this town is creating a horrible life for us.
     
  2. AllForHer

    AllForHer Well-Known Member

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    Look, the shortest answer is that nobody here can tell you what to say to your ex to make him see reason. Often, there's nothing a person can say to make an unreasonable person see reason, but that may or may not be the case with your ex.

    So, what I suggest is looking at your options, considering the possible outcomes and deciding what path is the most workable for you.

    First step is to attempt mediation with dad to try and negotiate relocation. Possible outcomes are success, you can relocate, or failure, you have to consider your options further.

    What I perceive to be the options thereafter are:
    - stay where you are and continue with existing arrangement; or
    - relocate without dad's consent and let him decide if he wants to pursue proceedings for contravention and recovery; or
    - relocate and leave the child to live with dad; or
    - file for Court to get the orders amended.

    I imagine your preferences will either be to relocate without consent or file for Court, so let's consider the possible pros and cons.

    Relocation without consent:
    Pros
    - You get to move with the child
    - Dad may not pursue proceedings to have your move rectified

    Cons
    - If you send the kid to see dad, dad might keep him and force you to file for recovery, but you may not succeed given the unilateral relocation;
    - Dad may file for contravention orders or a recovery order together with parenting orders for the child to live with him. He might succeed with contravention, but recovery would essentially open up proceedings to vary existing orders, and there's no way of knowing how that would go when considered in light of your decision to relocate unilaterally.

    Apply to vary orders:
    Pros

    - You're following the proper avenues for changing the consent orders instead of flouting them to relocate

    Cons
    - You are back in Court anyway and may or may not succeed.

    Personally, I think your chances of success are actually quite reasonable, provided you focus your case on supporting the child's relationship with dad if you do relocate, rather than the fact that step-mum is a bit of a jerk and you've agreed to collect the kid from school during dad's time.

    In perspective, a travel distance of two hours isn't untenable for an every-other-weekend arrangement, and an every-other-weekend arrangement isn't too far off what's happening now anyway. I think you're being reasonable with what you're offering in terms of care arrangements, and I think your reasons for moving are valid (that is, work, being closer to family and moving back to where you were before). Just don't turn it into a whinge fest about dad and his wife - it might be important to you, but it's not going to support your case in court.

    How old is the child?
     
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  3. MummyOf2

    MummyOf2 Well-Known Member

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    Thank you for your response. My son is 8.
    I will apply to the court today for relocation orders. I understand it means being back in court but I am prepared to go down that avenue to not lose my son over wanting to be near my family again.
    I will attempt to mediate with my ex in the meantime and hope that when it goes to court I have something positive to give the court.
    I don't want to whinge about my ex or his wife but would it be valid to raise all the issues with their breach of court orders with them?
     
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