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Custody of Children - Can Ex Take Kids during My Time?

Discussion in 'Family Law Forum' started by James Mansfield, 5 May 2014.

  1. James Mansfield

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    My ex-wife and I share the kids 50/50 ( custody of children) and it's great. I'm going on school camp with the eldest and my current partner (of over 2 years who we've lived with for 9 months) was going to look after the youngest for the two nights while we're away on camp. My ex-wife is saying she won't allow my current partner to look after him and I'm wondering what I can do under family law if my ex-wife picks him up from school without my permission on the days they are in my care.
     
  2. rebeccag

    rebeccag Well-Known Member

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    G'day James
    Do you have a parenting agreement or Consent Orders?
     
  3. James Mansfield

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    We have a parenting agreement in place and it has been working for 3 years. It specifies that he will be with me Wed-Sat nights every week. She is threatening to pick him up from school for these nights while I am away with my eldest. I don't want that to happen and have arranged for my current partner (whom we live with) to look after him.

    PS. I filled out the consent orders and gave it to her to complete about 18 months ago and she has not completed it so there are no consent orders in place.
     
  4. rebeccag

    rebeccag Well-Known Member

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    The ultimate consideration is what is in the best interests of the child. How old is your child? Is he old enough to have an opinion about staying with your current partner? If he is, that should be taken into account. If he feels safe and looked after staying with your current partner while you're away, then you should make your wife aware of this in light of the ultimate consideration that the Family Law Courts consider - the best interests of the child. (Or if the opposite is true, then you need to consider whether him staying with your ex while you're away is in his best interests.)

    Given that you started preparing Consent Orders 18 months ago, I imagine you’re aware that a parenting plan is not a legally enforceable agreement (unlike Consent Orders or a parenting order where you can go to the Family Court for a penalty if the other party breaches the terms).

    It might be worth re-writing your parenting agreement to take into account your children being looked after and spending time with your new partner. You might want to apply for that agreement to then be made into Consent Orders with the Family Court. Or apply for Parenting Order if you can’t agree with your ex - there is mandatory family dispute resolution which may held sort things out. See CathL’s LawAnswers Family Law Forum Post in relation to outlining parenting arrangements that are legally enforceable.
     
    CathL likes this.

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