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WA Family Court Orders - How to Get Ex to See Reason?

Discussion in 'Family Law Forum' started by MARTIN CONNOLLY, 15 April 2015.

  1. MARTIN CONNOLLY

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    Hi. I have been divorced for over 10 years now. We have had a set of family court orders in place since 2006 and generally co-exist ok - shared responsibilities - kids week about.

    My boys have played soccer for 6 years now under 9s-14's. I have coached most of that time. This year i decided to take a break. In all that time the boys mum has never paid a thing towards soccer fees nor attended probably half the matches cos she plays soccer herself - her whole life is all about her - a total control freak - she has been emotionally and verbally abusive to me in all that time - i just get on with it... my boys are 15 and 13 this year and seeing their mum for all she is much as i am sure they love her. We changed teams this year and she refuses to support the choice of teams so my poor kids have at presently to miss out every second week and they love their soccer - she has no earthly reason to not take them other than selfishness and as usual to try hurt me - when all she is doing as usual is hurt the boys. What can I do?

    My boys have made this decision knowing full well she is doing her best to sabotage it - she has done this for years - for the first time ever my oldest said to me "dad - i don't want to be at mums anymore - i cant live like this!". This moment has been coming for years - she still treats them like they are 5 years old - they both would rather be with me but have been too afraid of her. Staying with me is not the issue - that will take care of itself in due course - iIam now concerned for my sons mental welfare - BUT... short term do I have any legal family law avenues to pursue? The orders are very generic and state things like "each parent will support their children in activities etc".

    Any advice you can give would be greatly appreciated

    Thanks very much.
     
  2. AllForHer

    AllForHer Well-Known Member

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    Well, as always, the first step is organising a family dispute resolution conference to discuss the issues.

    If agreement can't be reached about soccer, then you could consider pursuing a change to the order on grounds the circumstances have changed enough that the best interests of the kids are no longer being met. They're a lot older now and both above the age of the 12, which means a court is very likely to place significant weight on their opinions about care arrangements. In many cases, orders to the effect of 'the children shall spend time with the mother in accordance with their wishes' are the outcome.

    The soccer issue, while no doubt frustrating, is probably unlikely to be a major concern for the court in the greater scheme of things, but it will be concerned by the views of your kids about care arrangements.

    But the first step is always family dispute resolution. It's a requirement for any family law applications made to the court, but I hope I have otherwise been of some help.
     
    Worldly1 and Sophea like this.
  3. Strongarms38

    Strongarms38 Well-Known Member

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    As always AFH your assistance is lovely. Appreciated I know by myself and many others.

    Martin as for your circumstances AFH is quite right. In all matters to do with family disputes you must attempt to resolve the matter firstly with a family dispute resolution service first. This could be a group like Relationships Australia or the Citizens Advice Bureau. This is the first port of call.

    Depending on how that goes the following steps are time consuming and rather costly. I've been in this sad environment for 15 months now. You do sound as though you have a similar problem to me in the sense that your children's wishes aren't being either supported or even a consideration by your ex. My experience is exactly the same in this regard. I've progressed through a family court appointed family case officer. Which is similar to mediation except you have your lawyer present and it is normal given your children's ages that they are heard at these hearings. Again this starts to become rather expensive. Lawyers also are always of a different caliber. So choosing a good one isn't easy to navigate. In my case my ex's lawyer is a very unprofessional man. He wants this to go to court despite his job requirement being to aide a resolution without court proceedings being necessary. It's quite obvious he has no regard for the children what so ever. If your ex should also enlist the services of an unprofessional lawyer you may come up against similar issues. I did the mediation as per the law. My ex refused to mediate once she knew she had nothing of any legal standing to back up her allegations. So a long and painfully drawn out process ensues. I'm sorry to say that this isn't up to you.

    Your kids are old enough to have their voices heard. A family court officer will often be the one to decide how much weight is given to the children's wishes based on their opinion of the kids level of maturity. They attempt to discern if there is any undue influence placed on either child by either parent also.

    This process may yet still be fruitless. As I've found out. The court officer was more than satisfied I'd resolved my ex wife's trumped up allegations and she believed the children had received undue influence from my ex towards my daughter in particular. She also noted as it was told to her directly that my 12 year old son was angry at his mother for never listening to his wants or desires to be spending the amount of time with his dad that he wanted.

    So sadly it appears court will end up necessary. This can easily be the case when a bad lawyer is involved. On the plus side the family court appointed officers report does cast a very negative shadow over my ex and her treatment of the children and her absolute lack of compassion for our children's expressed wishes.

    This now appears to be the starting point of more rubbish to come that as you have duly noted is designed to hurt you. The only thing to come from this is that the kids in the end are the ones who are left hurting. These types of incidents can leave long lasting scars. It's very important to concern yourself with your boys mental well being. If not already occurring I would suggest obtaining some form of counselling for them. We want their happiness at the end of the day not their misery.

    Best of luck. I hope this helps a little or at the very least gives you a heads up to what may come to be.
     
  4. MARTIN CONNOLLY

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    Thank you Soooo Much - kinda - very sadly reinforced what i thought would be the case - as long as my boys have their Dad behind them they will grow up to be beautiful kind caring guys and hopefully even better parents to their siblings! I hope i live long enough to share that with them.
    Very much appreciate you taking the time and effort to share this with me
    Thanks Again
    Martin
     

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