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VIC Ex-Wife Lying in Affidavit - What to Do?

Discussion in 'Family Law Forum' started by MidnightPony, 2 May 2016.

  1. MidnightPony

    MidnightPony Active Member

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    Hi all,

    My partner's ex submitted her affidavit for family court only a few days before the first court date and it has been found to be full of lies, exaggerations and emotive arguments.

    Normally, this would be a he said/she said situation, however, for at least 70% of these lies there is SMS evidence which easily contradicts what she's claiming.

    How much use is this in a custody of children situation? Her argument often hinges on claiming he prioritises work over the children which can be refuted by reading her inability to a) tell him about important school events and b) give him adequate notice for changes of schedule (more than 24 hours). She's attempting to use this against him, however, the SMS history clearly shows the times and dates as well as his polite requests to provide more notice and he'll sort out work. She's also been advised that his partner (me) is flexible and willing to pitch in with school pick ups and drop offs (which she's not allowing for now), but has disregarded it.

    She's also making allegations of domestic violence, feeling intimidated and frightened. There is less evidence for this, but her SMS history contradicts this as she's happily maintained a friendly relationship with him when she's getting her way and has never tried to restrict access to the children on this basis. It's clear when reading over the extensive SMS history that she's not afraid of him and that he's been nothing but co-operative and helpful, but I'm not sure how much any judge (or lawyer) would be willing to wade through it all when it's ultimately pretty petty.

    But then again if she's using these claims as a means to sway the court's decision in her favour, surely SMS history would be relevant? She's trying to prevent a 50/50 split and maintain 4 days access a fortnight, even though the children thrive with their dad and have frequently expressed desires to spend more time with him (both to their dad and their mother).

    So I guess this is just about gauging the value of an extensive and at times incriminating SMS history. Will the legal people just see it as petty bickering, or recognise the truth within them?

    Thanks :)
     
  2. sammy01

    sammy01 Well-Known Member

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    Please let us know how you go.

    Look, don't get caught up with family law and proving this or that. It ain't like the movies. His job is to prove that 50/50 is in the best interests of the kids. It is not his job to prove her wrong. So he should spend his time establishing why 50/50 is a great idea. Her job is to prove that it isn't.

    Magistrates are smart dudes - So the first thing is if things are so bad and he is so evil why does mum agree to 4 a fortnight? So her argument is pretty hard to sustain. Let her hang herself with falsehoods. Meanwhile, he should focus on the best interests of the children because that is what family law is based upon.
     
  3. MidnightPony

    MidnightPony Active Member

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    Thanks for the reply Sammy :)

    He's definitely focussed on the best interest of the children, but it's tough when she's painting him as a monster. Honestly, if I believed even half of what she claimed I'd think he wasn't a fit parent.

    I guess I just worry that due to the blatant lies she might actually convince someone that he's really the evil s**t she makes him out to be, and he loses credibility and access as a result. I'm worried that if her lies aren't highlighted then she can't hang herself on them :( The inconsistency between her actions and words will be telling at least.
     
  4. sammy01

    sammy01 Well-Known Member

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    So just checking - she isn't saying that the kids should not have 4 a fortnight. Look, the magistrates have seen it all. And if that is the best she has to offer then it ain't all that convincing...

    And while it is annoying to be slandered, he really needs to stay on task. His task isn't to prove her wrong. His task is to prove that the kids will do better with more time with dad. As far as her accusations - all he needs to do is respond in his affidavit by saying that he does not agree. No more, no less...
     
  5. MidnightPony

    MidnightPony Active Member

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    Cool, I'll pass that onto him. I hope his lawyer is moving in that direction, but sadly the mother is super excellent at tooting her own horn about her own perceived awesomeness as supreme mother of the year. She's stunningly average as a parent in reality.

    He's more humble and fact driven. The kids love him fiercely and thrive in his presence but that's not been emphasised heavily :( and he doesn't have objective proof as such, they just do! Argh.

    Goddamnit this should not be this horrible and hard :(

    He's on 4 days a fortnight and is trying for 50/50. Chances are not great that this will happen or even increase from 4 days... even though the kids are desperate for more time and he's capable of everything needed to facilitate it. Their mother is dysfunctional at the best of times and they really would do well to have more time away from her :(
     
  6. sammy01

    sammy01 Well-Known Member

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    How old are the kids?

    Look, I don't think it is a complete waste of time. You've started proceedings so keep going but once the kids are older, depending on a range of circumstances, it could be much easier to get more time.

    So keep going - since you've started - but realise there are other options especially once the kids are older than 12, which his the age where the kids perspective is given more consideration.
     
  7. AllForHer

    AllForHer Well-Known Member

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    In addition to the above (I agree with sammy01 - your partner's job isn't to be the better parent, it's to show why the orders you're seeking are in the best interests of the kids), I want to note as well that if mum isn't giving any notice about school functions and what not, the best course of action is to bypass the need to get notice from mum and talk directly to the child's school and extracurricular facilitators instead.

    The same goes for nearly everything to do with the kids - tell your partner to act like a genuine single parent. If the kids are sick, take them to a doctor; if they have lice, treat them; stock your home with plenty of clothes and possessions for the kids, as though they live there full-time; include them in household chores, help them with homework, give them boundaries of your own. Don't rely on the mother for any aspect of the parenting business, but do keep her informed of major issues, like if the kids have sustained a major injury.

    And rise above the bs. These judges aren't idiots, and they certainly aren't easily deceived. Have faith that they'll do their job.
     
  8. MidnightPony

    MidnightPony Active Member

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    Thanks, AllForHer. He did try to bypass her and contact the school, but she had said something unpleasant about him and they were very difficult. He's still managed to get the school newsletter for bigger events, but small things like she mentioned in her affidavit (class awards, etc) are never communicated.

    He's all over medical stuff, homework and keeping appointments, etc. They have their own room and believe me, it's theirs! They have clothing, toys, craft supplies, etc as well as their pictures on the walls. It's their home as much as ours. They help with housework, pets and meals and are given boundaries which they both respond really well too.

    They've had their first court session now and the judge was amazing. So you're right that I should have had some faith :) She awarded some weekday time (finally!) in the interim order and wants parents and kids to attend a counselling session so she can hear what the kids have to say. It's a wonderful outcome as, despite being only 6 and 7, they've said for months (even years) that they want more time with their dad. Their mother even mentioned it in her affidavit (accusing him of influencing them, which is untrue). Of course, given their ages, it'll be of lesser impact than if they were older but I am just so thrilled that the judge was interested in what they have to say!

    So, for now, things will be much better :) after counselling the judge will decide if there's enough info to make a decision about ongoing custody and if not it'll go to a final ruling next year. But the interim orders are fine for that time period, even if more days would have been better.

    Thanks for the replies! I hate that this is so public, but at the same time, it's also nice to show others that there's some hope to be found in court...
     
  9. sammy01

    sammy01 Well-Known Member

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    So what sort of access had the magistrate ordered in the interim?
     
  10. AllForHer

    AllForHer Well-Known Member

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    That's really great to hear. At interim hearing, it's quite common for the judge to uphold the status quo for care arrangements for the duration of proceedings, so it's a very positive sign for your partner if the judge has increased time spent with without even testing the evidence. Keep us updated.
     

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