VIC applying to vary intervention order

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Jamie27

Well-Known Member
9 April 2020
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Hi - I'll try to keep it as concise as I can.

* Police took out full 2 year intervention order on behalf of wife and my three daughters aged in July 2018. She falsely alleged various things, including an assault, that police investigated. No charges were laid. I chose to accept the order without admissions.
* In September 2018 wife tells me the girls want to see me for father's day and hatches a parenting agreement signed by both of us - which we thought would give us some flexibility on the intervention order - this included a clause saying I could stay at the family home "as required" (yes I now know I should have gone back to magi's court and got the order amended so please don't bust my chops)
* In December 2018 she pleads with me to come back home full time to help care for our daughter with anorexia.
* In June 2018 wife needs me to look after kids at the family home for a month while she has an operation - daughter with anorexia is getting back on track with the assistance of both of us - I'm pretty much living there full time.
*In late January this year after a few problems and disagreements re children's schooling and other parenting matters, wife announces she is moving out to a rental because she sees no future with me.
* kids don't want to spend time with mum at the rental - I tell them while I won't force them to do anything they really need to spend time with their mum
* I have full time care of the kids at the family home from Feb, through March - two months non-stop - wife tells me via text she's happy with the job I'm doing and she's happy for them to stay with me during the impending coronavirus lockdown
* a few problems arise whenever I try to raise issue of how I am going to pay for eldest daughter's $20k a year school fees after losing my job - it always ends with wife screaming at me.
* problems also arise when I oppose eldest daughter - who is 14 - spending the night at her boyfriend's house. Am very clear thy at I'm okay with her having a boyfriend - just think it's a bit young for sleepovers. Whenever I voice an opposing view on parenting matters she always becomes extremely aggressive. It's like I am just there to pay the bills and that is that.
* early April wife wants to take eldest to the city to stay at her mother's house for an unspecified period - her mum is elderly, our eldest is scared of the whole coronavirus issue - I tell wife I'm not happy about it but don't stand in her way
* wife returns eldest a few days later, then a few days after that announces she wants to take the youngest to her mum's house - despite premier's warning that any travel should be essential and people shouldn't just be visiting each other - I voice my opposition to this as well. She pushes for eldest and middle daughter to go but they refuse because they want to stay at home with me.
* one Friday I head off to the supermarket, and ring home to touch base with my eldest who is beside herself in tears because her mother and the police are there. I later receive a text message from my wife who tells me I can't stay at the family home anymore - this is despite her having her own separate rental.
* Since her message suggests revocation of one clause (staying at the home) I head home to collect a computer and sim card - on arrival my eldest is distraught - telling me her mum is on the phone to triple zero - claiming I am breaching the intervention order. This has all come out of the blue and I am super confused, given the preceding two months have been fantastic with the kids, not withstanding the usual "clean your room" "empty the dishwasher" kind of directions. Lots of hiking, time in the veggie patch, cooking, board games, movie nights... you get the picture.
* I am later questioned by police over an alleged assault a week earlier that never happened - and the supposed "breach" of the order. I know our "agreement' is flimsy legal ground and I should have got the original order modified.
* Police who attended on the morning I was at the supermarket told me that the girls were so upset at being torn apart from me and the prospect of staying with their mother that they considered putting them in emergency care.
* I later received text messages from my eldest, saying she was terrified of her mother, who'd told her that she didn't care if I went and killed myself, and if she was so scared she should ring triple zero, my daughter said she was terrified and didn't know what to do. My youngest also sent an email saying she was scared of her mum and wanted me to come and rescue her. I didn't reply, fearing I would breach the order.
* I got in touch with local police, who went and did a welfare check, The officer who answered the phone was one of the two who attended the property the day before. I sent him the email and text from the girls alleging poor treatment at the hands of their mum. A sergeant who conducted the welfare check said the girls were okay physically and advised me he told them they could contact me if they wanted, since they weren't the subject of any intervention order. Their mother stopped them from doing so much to their distress which was expressed in text messages that I was not able to reply to.
* I have applied to the local magistrate's court to seek leave to vary the order (which I should have done in the first place) - namely taking the girls off the order, and getting the exclusion lifted on me attending the family home (since wife now lives elsewhere). I have been paying the mortgage there ever since the original order was taken out, and also paid child support. I think I have a good case - and am happy for the girls to be interviewed by whoever they need to be to express their point of view given they are 14, 13 and 10. They want to spend time with me. I don't care if the conditions concerning my wife remain, as I have no interest in having anything to do with her beyond sharing parental responsibilities.
* it has been years of misery with this woman - who I have endured for the sake of the children. I can't do it any longer and just want to move on. I am also considering taking out an intervention order against her, to stop her dropping around as she pleases and making my life hell with false accusations etc.
* any tips, views or advice would be greatly appreciated - yes I know I should have had the IVO varied the instant she suggested spending time with girls at the family home back in September 2018 - unfortunately I trusted her lawyer a little bit too much at the time.
* All I want is to go home and share parental responsibility 50-50.
 

Atticus

Well-Known Member
6 February 2019
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I feel for you :( . Definitely going to be better off without her though... There is a lot to take in here. Could you just summarize for us .

1) kids ages
2) What is happening right now with the police, IVO .... Who are named as protected persons
3) Who is currently in the house... Does she still have the rental
4) What is the current state of your employment (future prospects after Covid is gone)
5) What is the situation with her employment/income
6) What is the current situation with the kids. Where are they living. What do they WANT to do
 

Jamie27

Well-Known Member
9 April 2020
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0
121
Hi Atticus
Thanks for replying.

1. Girls are 14, 13 and 10.
2. Wife and girls are named as protected persons on the IVO which expires on July 19. Police questioned me about the alleged assault and the alleged breach last Friday. I am expecting if charges end up being laid it will be in regards to breaching the order by being at the property to collect my computer. That's it. I think I have good plea material in terms of going back to help daughter with life threatening anorexia etc etc.
3. Wife is currently in the house - and still has the rental as far as I know.
4. I'm very confident of finding another good job. Extremely confident. Seeing it all as an opportunity instead of a setback.
5. She has been stood down from her job but will be eligible for Job Keeper and also runs a successful online business.
6. Kids are at the house where I was living - they have been very happy with me and want me in their lives. They are desperate to be in touch with me but the IVO is preventing it. They want to be with me and were so distressed about staying with their mum when police came to the house they considered taking them out of her custody. I would be happy with a 50-50 arrangement.

Thanks again for replying.
 

Atticus

Well-Known Member
6 February 2019
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Have to walk on egg shells ATM ... Cops sound like they are 'on your side' but have to acknowledge orders that are there... Wouldn't worry too much about having moved back in, been there for years obviously at her request & cops haven't raised it...

Shouldn't think too much is going to be made of you going back for computer as long as there was no confrontation at the time...

If you are financially okay & the kids are happy being with you, I think you will just have to move as quickly as possible with the application to vary the IVO as a starting point ... Find somehwre close by to live & file for property & parenting orders .... Also, regarding the child support you have been paying ... How long for? Is it private collect or via CSA?
 

Jamie27

Well-Known Member
9 April 2020
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121
Child support has always just been private collect... I have paid over the odds whenever I've had to move out, or she has left. School fees on top. This is a cycle that's been going on for some time, but not always with the IVO to contend with,

Booked in at magi's court for first stage of varying order next Tuesday. I was surprised I could get in so quickly to be honest - the lady at the court had three time slots spare... police (who pushed me to take this course of action) told me magistrate can decide on the day, but I am tipping they would want to speak to my wife first. If she puts up resistance to taking the kids off the order I am happy for them to be interviewed by whoever does that... cops assured me it's not a traumatic process for them.

My ideal outcome would be to move back into the house where I have been paying the mortgage for years.. she goes back to her rental... I get to have 50-50 care of the kids and we all just get on with our lives.

Thanks for your comments.
 

sammy01

Well-Known Member
27 September 2015
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egg shells atm. Good advice.
Apply for mediation through relationships Australia. Magistrate will want to know that you have started that process.
Do NOTHING. Don't go near her.

don't throw $ at solicitors for avo variation. Do that yourself. Save the $$$ for family law solicitors if it comes to that.

At some point you might need to stop paying. I'm all for paying a bit extra to keep things sweet. But the extra $ you're paying is getting you no-where. If she won't let you see the kids, stop paying the mortgage and pay child support as per their rules. That might see her change her mind a bit.
 
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Jamie27

Well-Known Member
9 April 2020
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121
Thanks for the feedback.

I forgot to mention that in early march her lawyer sent me a letter outlining options for 50-50 care - that offer has now been withdrawn after my wife's latest brain snap, but I'm confident I won't have to fight too hard for it to come back on the table.

I received another letter from her lawyer two days ago offering to let me speak to the kids via Facetime every Monday, Wednesday and Friday plus over Easter. As much as I want to speak to the kids I'm a bit nervous about accepting this offer - as I'm fearful the ex could change her mind on a whim and accuse me of breaching again, given it's just a letter from a lawyer. The police officer's words of not accepting anything that isn't court approved keep ringing in my ears.
 

Atticus

Well-Known Member
6 February 2019
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I received another letter from her lawyer two days ago offering to let me speak to the kids via Facetime every Monday, Wednesday and Friday plus over Easter. As much as I want to speak to the kids I'm a bit nervous about accepting this offer
Yes I agree .... wouldn't risk it until orders are varied to remove their names .... You could possibly use that letter in court at variation to demonstrate that she obviously doesn't consider you a risk in contacting/talking to kids.

I would also be mentioning at variation that it's in fact the cops that attended who have suggested you take this action after having witnessed the distressed state of the kids ...

Also just clarify in case I missed it ... The current IVO places what restrictions on you regarding her, ie, Not to come within xxxxx distance of YOUR house address, or just within xxx distance of her, or something else?

And (if you are okay with it) what was the nature of the IVO that the police took it out on her behalf back in 2018.
 

Jamie27

Well-Known Member
9 April 2020
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121
Hi Atticus
The current IVO is one with the lot. Not to go within 200m of the home, remain within 5 metres of her etc. The nature of the IVO that police took out on her behalf was that she alleged I'd thrown a plate of food (which I didn't) and also threw clothes at her. She told them she felt scared. She also claimed I'd had long running anger issues etc. Kids were put on the order because the ex had claimed that I'd sworn and been angry in front of the children. This latest blow up has come after I lost my job and told her I can't afford private school fees right now...
Cheers
 

Jamie27

Well-Known Member
9 April 2020
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121
speaking of IVO's - my copy is at the home where I can't go - where should I go to get a copy? police station? court when I attend for the variation?