SA Chances of ex being granted recovery orders or denied?

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Concernedmum01

Well-Known Member
11 September 2021
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So short run down
3 kids - 2 I have full custody 1 no orders and just a parenting plan entered into after ex refused to return the child after we broke up for a couple months out of retaliation to me moving in with boyfriend, I was tired of begging so I just agreed to it, then went through mediation to try get a more appropriate plan in place, as he works 6 days a week and the child in question spends a total of just shy of 3 days with the ex if you counted all the hours up in ex's care.
- ex was abusive and had substance abuse issues affecting his ability to parent and would flat out refuse to participate in the household - 3 kids were witnesses.
- he would use a huge chunk of $ on the substance and it had effected my ability to provide for the kids efficiently.
- when he broke up he made it difficult for me to move out. Putting conditions on the times when I tried to collect my belongings (my name was still on the lease). Took 2 months to get my car back and 4 to get all my stuff.
- he kept rocking up unannounced to my house. And sent me texts when i had visitors and had disclosed him and his mother having a conversation suggesting I contacted her for babysitting when I wanted to do "adult stuff" suggesting I was promiscuous.
- attempted to not return child because I stayed over my boyfriends and treated him different now and then next visit did not return him because I moved in to his as my new neighbour was out on parole. Then said it was because i neglected the kids in the relationship (the effects of the abuse were now all my fault)
- after this he let me have every 2nd weekend for 2 months then 50/50
- after 2nd plan through mediation he reneged on agreed arrangement the next day as we looking after our child during his work hours cut him time down...
- has been uncooperative with parental decisions about medical appointments and future schooling arrangements to facilitate the 50/50.
- made medical appointments behind my back and then not attended them.
- took child to ED and did not tell me but was having a go at me over fb messenger while at hospital about me not following his instructions regarding the child (I actually had been)
- never the one doing pick up and drop off
- rarely get updates in his time
- hasnt paid child support and has avoided filing tax to avoid paying bc he did not consent to me applying for it

Recently child came home from his care with concerning injury in a spot a 2 year old would not usually have an injury, when i asked about when and how, he claimed not to know and got super defensive and seemed to only care about himself in the situation. I expressed how I did not understand how it went unnoticed and untreaged (to clarify it looked like he had either been hit with something or fell on something and was lower right back where kidney and liver and rib sits. Huge bruise that was darkish green and 4 inch red line that initially looked like a scratch but there was no broken skin).


Fast forward a week aftermediacal apts, phone calls asking for advice. I was instructed by CARL not to send the child back.

So I tell him until appropriate care arrangements are made, child wont be returning. Bc past abuse and the unknown circumstances surrounding the injury.

Since then this is what has happened

He has denied the abuse, tried to collect the child from child care without telling me, demanded I deliver child at his work or face legal action, called for 2 welfare checks on me, followed me and my children in his work van while on work time and had a lawyer send me a letter demaning I deliver child to him again or they will seek urgent recovery orders. In the letter it shows he lied about when we did mediation, its written as if he is the primary care giver when he isnt and as if the time in which he did not return child was an agreed upon arrangement and ofc denies every allegation of abuse.

The Department of Child Protection got involved after I went to cops asking about him attempting to collect child from child care without telling me. Made a statement about the injury and they had called me next day. Both keep telling me everytime ive had to talk to them not to return child and seek protection orders and full custody...

So... given all this and i did respond to the letter from the lawyer stating my position and corrected the wrong info about mediation and stuff...

What is the likelihood of him getting granted the recovery orders?

Could he get them ex parte?

He has proven that he has no issue in painting me out to be an unfit mother.

Will the judge look into my reasons as to why I havent given him his next visitation before making a decision?

Will i be told he has applied to ex parte if he does and given a chance to defend myself?

Like I am still following the law as per s60CC FLA

Just concerned... and can't find the info I need
 

Concernedmum01

Well-Known Member
11 September 2021
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Hello Concenedmum

To get this right, did his lawyers threaten to file an application to recover the 1 child in his care?
I must have typed something wrong.

His lawyer has threatened me with filing urgent recovery orders to recover the child from me as I have not given him his time as per instructions from the department of child protection and SA police pending investigation. Ive been instructed on multiple occasions to do as DCP instruct and file for protection orders as per DCP request.

Ive always been our child primary caregiver, even in our past relationship. Ex would go to work, come home and smoke weed until he passed out in the shed. Nothing I did was good enough, always a damned if you do damned if you don't situation. Refered to our child as "oi dickhead" all the time, bullied my other children. At one point the only furniture we had in the house was 2 single bed mattresses, 1 double bed, a desk, kitchen utensils, my laptop, clothes and a TV because he wouldnt let me buy any furniture. There's just so many things.

Within the first 2 months of us breaking up (oct last year 2020) he made almost daily suggestions that Our child should live with grandma, it would financially benefit me if he did, then made suggestions of moving the child with him to QLD, then attempted to not return him (dec 4th) and then didnt return him for what he claims was 60+ days (dec 9th 2020 to feb 21st 2021) in which during that time he allowed me a total of less than 24 hours in that whole time seeing our child. Our child regressed in all his milestones except walking, and when he finanlly returned to my care would react to being told not to touch something by slamming his head into walls, concrete, metal poles, draw handles, his cot or the wooden floor. He also had this reaction if he was not in eyeshot of me at any given moment, refused to leave my side and would insist I hold his hand walking around the house or refuse to let me put him down.

This was getting better over time but he still wasn't talking or engaging, and after this injury the first 2 weeks back in my care he would freak out going into the car seat - week 3 and its become only occasionally around the time we would leave for him to go to dads, but upon realising we were just doing school pick up, he settled.

He has been back in my care full time since the 22nd of august (not long I know) in that time he has had only a few outbursts over me leaving the room, is finally talking and attempting to repeat everything I say to him is so engaged with everything and he is back to how he was prior to his dad not returning him.

To give a little context. Ive added a pic of the injury. Hopefully it shows on here. 20210912_001343.jpg
 

sammy01

Well-Known Member
27 September 2015
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I have a few problems with what you have written
1. "He has denied the abuse". So somehow you have decided the kid was abused? Oh and worse - that man he denied it...
2. That photo - that is a kid falling over / grazing themselves. But you have portrayed it as a " concerning injury in a spot a 2 year old would not usually have an injury". This child slams his head into walls, but you're worried about a graze? and have implied it was some how intentionally done to the child by the dad? WTF? it is a graze...
3. He doesn't pay child support? Have you applied? Have you sought for them to investigate his earning capacity? if not? why not? What relevance is that anyways - Especially if you have not sought child support.? Seriously? I wanna know your answer?
4. Child protection told you not to return the kid? NOPE They said "IF you have concerns for the kid then don't return him". IF... They would not tell you to refuse to return a child without having investigated. Do you have any documentation from child services saying DO NOT RETURN THE CHILD? Do you? see I'm gonna bang on about this one heaps.
5. You have "been instructed on multiple occasions to do as DCP instruct and file for protection orders as per DCP request." Why has DCP had to instruct you multiple times? why didn't you do it the first time they 'instructed' you. BTW when child services see a problem, they don't 'instruct' they enforce... So why didn't you get a protection order?
6. Dad took the kid for 60 days? From December until Feb? and when he did return the child you did nothing about it then? WTF?

Finally, this is a child. Not an object to fight over. You are being a twit. Your ex is a twit. You came here looking for advice, so I can call you a twit, if your ex posted here I'd call him a twit too.... Now - go for a walk, calm down. I have no doubt that you're not gonna like my advice, but that is ok. See my advice is good, I spent time writing it so please realise, I am trying to help. I'm not here trolling. So make a nice cuppa, calm down and keep reading.

Can the ex apply for an urgent recovery order? Yes.
Ex parte? No. Given you don't have court orders? Just a parenting plan? Is that right?
Regardless - If the ex applies to court you will be notified and clearly, dad knows how to contact you so ex-parte ain't gonna happen.
So yes - dad can apply for a recovery order - his chances of success depend largely on whether or not you have something from child services telling you that you must not return the child. DO YOU have anything in writing?

If you have welfare concerns for the child then do not return the child. I'd also suggest you contact legal aid.
I also reckon you need to choose your words wisely... See, dad not letting you buy furniture is not abuse... Or let me use something you said "He has proven that he has no issue in painting me out to be an unfit mother." Well you have no issue painting him out to be an unfit father.... So when dad said, hey if you wanna go do adult stuff, you've decided he is suggesting you're promiscuous? U'm a little bit precious there aren't you? We're not living in the 1950's.... But that is how you've twisted it. So my suggestion. Keep it factual - dad offering to look after the kid if you wanna go party is not offensive, in fact it shows that this bloke is pretty nice - but look how you've twisted it... Pay attention - don't try and twist things so they look

So what to do moving forward - behave like an adult. IF you have paperwork from child services TELLING you that you must not return the kid... Good and well. Do you? See the advice I'd give changes HEAPS based on how you answer that question. So I'm gonna leave it there because I don't want to continue writing based on assumptions.

Stay calm
 

Concernedmum01

Well-Known Member
11 September 2021
25
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121
I have a few problems with what you have written
1. "He has denied the abuse". So somehow you have decided the kid was abused? Oh and worse - that man he denied it...
2. That photo - that is a kid falling over / grazing themselves. But you have portrayed it as a " concerning injury in a spot a 2 year old would not usually have an injury". This child slams his head into walls, but you're worried about a graze? and have implied it was some how intentionally done to the child by the dad? WTF? it is a graze...
3. He doesn't pay child support? Have you applied? Have you sought for them to investigate his earning capacity? if not? why not? What relevance is that anyways - Especially if you have not sought child support.? Seriously? I wanna know your answer?
4. Child protection told you not to return the kid? NOPE They said "IF you have concerns for the kid then don't return him". IF... They would not tell you to refuse to return a child without having investigated. Do you have any documentation from child services saying DO NOT RETURN THE CHILD? Do you? see I'm gonna bang on about this one heaps.
5. You have "been instructed on multiple occasions to do as DCP instruct and file for protection orders as per DCP request." Why has DCP had to instruct you multiple times? why didn't you do it the first time they 'instructed' you. BTW when child services see a problem, they don't 'instruct' they enforce... So why didn't you get a protection order?
6. Dad took the kid for 60 days? From December until Feb? and when he did return the child you did nothing about it then? WTF?

Finally, this is a child. Not an object to fight over. You are being a twit. Your ex is a twit. You came here looking for advice, so I can call you a twit, if your ex posted here I'd call him a twit too.... Now - go for a walk, calm down. I have no doubt that you're not gonna like my advice, but that is ok. See my advice is good, I spent time writing it so please realise, I am trying to help. I'm not here trolling. So make a nice cuppa, calm down and keep reading.

Can the ex apply for an urgent recovery order? Yes.
Ex parte? No. Given you don't have court orders? Just a parenting plan? Is that right?
Regardless - If the ex applies to court you will be notified and clearly, dad knows how to contact you so ex-parte ain't gonna happen.
So yes - dad can apply for a recovery order - his chances of success depend largely on whether or not you have something from child services telling you that you must not return the child. DO YOU have anything in writing?

If you have welfare concerns for the child then do not return the child. I'd also suggest you contact legal aid.
I also reckon you need to choose your words wisely... See, dad not letting you buy furniture is not abuse... Or let me use something you said "He has proven that he has no issue in painting me out to be an unfit mother." Well you have no issue painting him out to be an unfit father.... So when dad said, hey if you wanna go do adult stuff, you've decided he is suggesting you're promiscuous? U'm a little bit precious there aren't you? We're not living in the 1950's.... But that is how you've twisted it. So my suggestion. Keep it factual - dad offering to look after the kid if you wanna go party is not offensive, in fact it shows that this bloke is pretty nice - but look how you've twisted it... Pay attention - don't try and twist things so they look

So what to do moving forward - behave like an adult. IF you have paperwork from child services TELLING you that you must not return the kid... Good and well. Do you? See the advice I'd give changes HEAPS based on how you answer that question. So I'm gonna leave it there because I don't want to continue writing based on assumptions.

Stay calm
Sorry my response is long and need to post in parts
 

Concernedmum01

Well-Known Member
11 September 2021
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Im not mad at your comment at all, I read a lot of your replies and was looking forward to it on mine. Alot of my comment/post is not the full context because that would take forever. (Its taken me all day in between everything else to write this response).


So ill just reply to your points. With a little more detail this time.


1) Denied the abuse towards me, and the negative effects children being exposed to it, on one occasion my oldest had attempted to get him off me with a stick, ive not accused him of any direct abuse to the children even in this situation I haven't, and I also wasn't the one who involved DCP and did not even think that would happen to be honest. Even when speaking with police, I went there to ask if he was allowed to just pick our child up without telling me first and was asked why he would do that and why it was an issue. So I explained, he was typing then he asked me to email him the pictures and the messages that were sent between us and next day DCP was calling me asking me to bring our son in.
In the relationship he did put my other children down a lot, speak badly about their father to them, encouraged them to join in when he would bully his mum or myself, he tried to hide that his friend had snortted cocaine in the garage and then went and played with them, in a rough and tumble sort of way and it got out of hand with my middle child hurt. I was tending to the baby at the time and when I had calmed the situation I had noticed his friend was not acting how he usually would and was amped up. When I had addressed it later he called me dramatic after I had and expressed that I felt disrespected that he had allowed that to occur knowing my position surrounding hard drugs and my children. To clarify so there is context, my position is if you want to do drugs that's fine, don't do them around my kids and don't come to my house if you are under the influence of hard drugs. If you want to smoke weed, fine, don't smoke in excess to the point you can't act in an emergency or you are unable to parent. If you want to drink, cool, knock yourself out (literally) but please don't drink in excess around my kids, don't drink anything you know makes you violent around my kids and if you choose to have 1 or 2 after a long day, don't leave your bottle/can or cup sitting within reach of a toddler with alcohol still in it. Keep it clean, sensible and where possible away from the children. People will do what they want, and its not my job to control others, my job is ensuring my children are safe and well cared for and this was my boundary as the reality is not everyone who uses/drinks are is a bad or dangerous person and not every parent who uses/drinks is a bad parent. I have this boundary as people are still at the end of the day unpredictable. This boundary constantly being crossed and the behaviour from him as a result of me attempting to address it and its effects is 1 contributing factor to me leaving. He put holes in the house, broke fixtures, broke mine and my children's belongings, ruined our clothes intentionally, withheld access to finance, verbally abused me almost daily, refused to carry out parental duties or was too high to carry them out, organised things last minute in response to me having any sort of request to attend law school events or friends events and then if I didn't attend, the plan he had organised was never carried out and if I was planning on attending the day was filled with put downs and comments to the point i was in tears after full face of makeup and then I would cancel because I felt guilty or like s**t. The 4 times I didnt cancel, he got his mum to babysit even though he was home. But god forbid I ask when he was out if I should be making him dinner or not and what time to expect him home.
 

Concernedmum01

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11 September 2021
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While yes the children being exposed to what happened is not acceptable at all and I do understand that just because he was like that to me does not mean he is/will be like that towards our son. In saying that, it also doesn't mean he won't or has not. But yes it is extensively documented and he is maintaining I am lying and delusional and all the consequences of what happened were all me and I am just neglectful and unfit. That's fine I don't care about being the villain in his story if it means I'm keeping the kids safe. I do care if it used in such a way purely just to hurt me though because that serves nobody but himself. If I keep going on this paragraph... well there is too many things honestly. Next...


2) While yes it does look as though its a graze, but its not sadly, the red line isnt broken skin at all, I had initially thought an animal scratch, like big dog maybe, and had only asked because he returned to me really unwell, they had pre warned me he didn't sleep well the night before, had refused all food and liquid the day before and that day, appeared to have a stomach ache and I thought from grandpa, grandma and dads description of the events of the last 24hrs suggested gastro and bacterial gastro can be passed from animal scratches. But when I attempted to get the photo our childs reaction was screaming no repeatidly crying, trying to get away from anyone going near there. He had never reacted like this before. Yes there are medical records that back up the not being a graze, had an ultrasound done etc. And Dr can't discuss much other than the diagnosis and the findings of the ultrasound, his kidney and liver are ok and that its a police matter now.

But yes he could very well have fallen on a hard object, the problem was the response to me asking was to be told I better be careful of how I talk to him, and he just was nasty about me asking and had asked me why our 2 year old was awake at 9:30pm (when I sent the photo as I was on hold to the out of hours Dr regarding his symptoms he had that night). My ex didn't show concern until after I pointed out that it wasn't normal, (I still thought it was some sort of scratch at this point because I hadn't been able to touch it at that point) and how I was confused that it was the first time he had heard about it, the grandparents hadn't known about it either.
And he suggested it happened in the 3 and a half hours I had him back in my care. 1.5 of those was spent driving home, the rest sick in my arms up until bath time in which I saw it straight away. (The photo I posted was taken 3 days after he returned to my care, the bruise was darker and the red line is also not a scratch, there was no broken skin its all just bruising and the line of broken blood vessels. The bruise is gone now the line almost).

Im more concerned it went unnoticed than anything, how in 7 days... nappy and clothing changes, bath time, the pain that was witnessed, how was he able to fall on something hard enough when he has been walking since before one, was he outside unsupervised, etc etc blah blah I have nothing to work with here, just an extremely sick 2yo who was in pain, with a weird injury that nobody had answers for and dad had first heard about it from me and his response was more concerned that I asked then if our child was ok. Like he leaves for work at 10am and isn't home until 8:30-9pm 6 days a week. He does not use any child care even though I offered to let him use my subsidy to reduce costs, but it never amounted to anything. I really have no idea who cares for him while dads at work. Literally no one can tell me how it happened but I never suggested anyone had done it on purpose. I just asked if he could tell me how and when it happened.
He knows our childs whole schedule in my care and I honestly know nothing about what happens in his care and I choose not to ask now because it just ends in him having a go at me and throwing insults. Yes these are documented.
 

Concernedmum01

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11 September 2021
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3) I applied when we broke up because I had a letter from centrelink saying I had to bc FTB, showed him, he acknowledged it, asked me to put it 50/50 to reflect care, did this and back dated it to when we broke up, copped the debt, paid it, but then eventually I ended up having to apply for change of assessment because he hasnt done tax in 2 years, and his income was set to a provisional income 60k under what he is earning now its at the point he is in over $450 in debt as he never responded to the change of assessment and it was granted.
Ive mentioned it twice over messenger and twice in person and his responses have been to tell me how he would report me for fraud for claiming 50/50 (when he didnt return child to my care) and how centrelink would love to hear about much family tax benefit I have received that is owed him that he is entitled to because I claim full FTB, and he is doing me a favour by not saying anything. 4 times in 4 different ways he threatened to attempt to have my income reduced for asking him to file tax... his 2018/2019 tax filing was late and put me in $2508 debt. This debt is being appealed by me as they believe I was paid 20k when entitled to 17, when I calculated it I was paid less than 14k... like the threats don't mean anything to me, I don't receive full FTB, it wont effect me if he applied. He could have applied when it was 50/50, I said he was welcome to apply for his share it doesn't affect me, and he is entitled to it for the 50/50 care and sent him the details to apply.
All this is in writing and he has said in writing that I don't deserve his money and he didn't consent to me applying so he refuses to pay. Not much else I can do honestly. Its our child's money not mine, that is my concern, but better to let him hang himself at this point with that one.
 

Concernedmum01

Well-Known Member
11 September 2021
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4) yes I have it in writing as my ex saw me and the children later that day of my meeting in our car and turned his work van around and started following us, and I was letting the case worker know what had happened.


5) I should have been more specific. SAPOL have told me listen to DCP on 5 seperate occasions, I did not get DCP involved. And I had just been told multiple times after I had been asking questions after the following us in the car, the legal action threat then the urgent recovery order intention from his lawyer. Initially I just advice from sapol, I didn't know what to do in the situation and was advised to seek private intervention orders after the child care incident, so I collected the paperwork. Then further after DCP contacted me to come in with our child. I there an hour with 2 case workers in a room with our being questioned and then they said go to sapol and ask for protection orders as soon as you leave, I said I needed to pick my other children up from school first, they said ok do that because from our experience things get dangerous and messy once someone finds out we are involved. I asked if they could put something in place, they had said they can't because there is a capable parent involved but to stress urgency and that they would provide their documents on the matter if required from the magistrate. From what I understand they had become involved due to SAPOL.


My approach to all this was to seek to new and appropriate arrangements regarding care which is still my position. I told him that hey look, given the factors and circumstance of past xyz (laid out list of specifics) and current xyz, it wouln't be appropriate for XXXX return to your care until new arrangements are made so that XXXX's current needs are met and the current 50/50 arrangement isn't suitable, stable etc. I don't want to stop any relationship between him and our child. My concern is just getting to the bottom of what happened honestly and they have not been able to get in contact with him yet. And honestly, if nobody knows and my 2yo can't actually tell me because he had been pretty much non verbal until 2 weeks ago, then its left unknown...

The only communication ive had from him was once asking how the child was on the 25th of aug before I let him know and addressed the need for a change in care arrangments, and then on the 29th when I let him know, the legal action threat on the 31st if I did not comply and drop our child off at his work (a warehouse) and then a letter from the lawyer on the 3rd with no response to my response and 2 welfare checks in between.

So waiting now for the outcome of it all. I am not entirely sure protection orders are necessary and I honestly don't want to be obstructive to his relationship with his child.

I just want there to be stability for our child, actual supervision so things like this aren't left untreated, that decisions about medical care isn't this huge struggle of trying to please a parent over treating a child or keeping things a secret (honestly have no idea why it would need to be in the first place) and that I am not being subjected to insults all the time.
 

Concernedmum01

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11 September 2021
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6) I called mediation when he didn't return our child, to which he had already called (he said he thought it was relationship therapy) we attended in march after I wrote up a parenting plan in Jan that started in feb. I agreed to the initial plan because I was exhausted in trying to reason with him, and I didn't want to unnecessarily take unreasonable action as the potential trauma of something like a recovery order wasn't a good idea considering our child's age. When I mentioned I had called mediation he initially laughed, asked if I was mad then when I said no I'm not, I want to use it he then tried to convince me to not use mediation and to cancel. We live quite far away from each other and if he wanted to keep care arrangments 50/50 then we needed an appropriate care plan to reflect how schooling is approached in the future.

Honestly, I didn't apply for any orders during or after as I just wanted to give him the chance to do the right thing, to be in our child's life after being so absent since he was born and I know he is worried his time could potentially be reduced by the courts if I applied due to his past actions, he has expressed this and has seen how I responded when my other children's father applied for relocation/recovery and parenting orders and was unsuccessful after I moved back to adelaide from melbourne, he has expressed he fears I will use my law degree against him (this is deferred and not finished, not an expert just know my way around a few areas but not recovery orders or ex parte orders for recovery).

I also wanted to give him the chance to be able to communicate about our child without abuse thrown at me, and effectively co-parent as he had been absent while in the relationship and appeared to be making a genuine effort to act in a way that he believed was in our child's best interest, even if it was based off allegations that aren't true and initially in retaliation to me moving on (he moved on 2 weeks after we broke up while making it hard for me to move out. The reality is he has no supporting evidence of his claims of neglect and what he has said was me being neglectful are all situations in which I had no access to the money I needed to fix the situation as he was spending it all on drugs and car accessories for himself. Its the main reason I left honestly, my kids were suffering and so was I and there was no prospect of any change from what I saw.

Initially he would respond with our child being the focus, but it quickly went back to him just having a go at me really, and it would get worse when I attempt to redirect conversation back to the topic of our child.

And I have on occasions fired back at him, I have no problem in admitting when I am at fault.