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Divorce.. what happens with access maintenance etc.. help!

(11 Posts)
lunavix Tue 23-Jun-09 19:20:31

H and i are midst divorce. In mediation, we agreed on maintenance of £300/m (his choice) and custody (access? what do you call it when dad has pr?) of him having them every weds night after work till next morning and every other weekend fri night till mon morning.

He has filled out the form at his solicitors about arrangements for the kids (his petition.) He has put the above details in, although he has put everything in the wrong box (he has worded it as I pay 300/m, and i have them those dates, even though he's put I'm main carer.) does this need to be rectified? and is this document legally binding?

He is now disputing everything. He decided he didn't want to pay that amount (the day after he filled that document out) as through CSA it would be less and he wanted control of what i was spending it on (as if.) After much arguing and such he has reduced it to £240. No idea atm what it would be in relation to his pay as no idea what pay is atm.

I feel he is also taking the mick with his hours with them.
It started off 5.30pm (after work weds) till 8am thurs (so i took to school) then similar hours fri till mon.
Then ds started swimming lessons that finished at 5pm on a weds so he endeavoured to pick up at 5pm.
That was all fine.
Then he decided he was taking ds to school on a thurs and mon so it was then 8.45. Now he's decided on a thurs he will also take dd to preschool, so it's now 9.15, except she's at preschool so I don't see her till after preschool or ds till after school.
Swimming now finishes at 4 so he picks up then on a weds.

We have split birthdays fairly amicably so far, and also switched occassional weekends around to accomodate fathers day mothers day etc. We split easter dead in half (2 days each) and have previous split christmas as me having christmas eve/till 1pm christmas day and ex having them rest of christmas day, then boxing day (though he then usually refuses to bring them back till the next day or whenever as it's a bank holiday too). We take it in turns with NYE/NYD.

As I have started work in april (finishes mid july) I have asked him to help out with taking ds to swimming (330 pick up from school) on his evening, and dd to ballet (a random time on a thurs) which for the most part he will do, on days that I cannot (I do shifts so it's not all the time).

However, now he has pretty much insisted he has the right to do this whenever he pleases, I only had one thursday off this half term and he 'told' me he was taking her, it's his right to.

This happens on other occassions too.

If he finishes work early, or decides towork from home etc, he will announce he's having them from 12 or something on a weds/fri.

He's decided he has a right to at least half if not more bank holidays, and won't return them till the tues. He's now decided christmas he's having them all the time till around 28th, i get them back 29/30th and he's having them over NY.

I feel really dictated to. He hasn't ever taken them on holiday as such, he goes abroad with friends for his time off (so he views bank holidays and such as his right as he isn't working therefore he has the right to see them). Yet some of the time he offloads them to his mum as he's out (I can't quote this or verify it as I have no proof, I just know he does it). Our son goes in for an operation (only tonsils) in august and he again 'told' me he would be the one staying overnight with him. After a bit of joking banter on my part, he was cold and aggressive, so I said 'well as its a tues technically it's my night!' which equally got me nowhere.

This may all sound petty but I feel like I've lost control of quality time with my kids. I felt that the time was divided up between us as mum and dad, eg I know he has less, and a lot of dads aren't happy, but that's how it was divided up and agreed to. Now he seems to be taking control over it, and as I've been working this control has meant that I don't get to see them as much as even he does now. And while I appreciate he wants to, and his mum (their gran) I feel they are working against me. His mum asked to take kids away on holiday over a weekend that was my weekend with them, as only time she was able to with a friend. I said okay as I knew they'd love it, and he went too! I felt somewhat like my trust has been abused as I then only had them one weekend that month and he had them for three...

Sorry this is so long... I'm really emotional atm and I know it's coming off really bad I just feel like I have no idea how to go back to this plan and I have no idea how the divorce fits in as well.

OldLadyKnowsNothing Tue 23-Jun-09 19:24:03

You might be better posting in Legal rather than here.

Ivykaty44 Tue 23-Jun-09 19:27:51

Ah - just want to say, go back to your solicitor and ask your solicitor to tell him you want to stick to the agreements that were made in mediation or otherwise you will go back to mediation and start again?

Or just get your solicitor to say every wednesday and every other weekend and every other christams and nye.

TBH stand up to it now as your ex is pushing the boundaries to see what happens.

It is strange that he didn't say he wanted more time when he was at mediation?

Haribosmummy Tue 23-Jun-09 19:29:53

Please don't view it as 'who has most time'. it's not a competition.

Your kids had a good time, they are happy and safe and their dad is involved with them.

There are times that we have my DSDs FAR more than 50% of the time one month, but then (take this summer) won't see DSD1 for the WHOLE of August...It's just the way it goes sometimes.

The money - no, he can't tell you what you are and are not allowed to spend it on. Also, make sure any agreement you come to takes into account an inflationary rise each year.

Is the £300 just for you? It doesn't seem enough for the kids too?

One thing you DO have every right to expect / demand though, is to know WHEN he's having them. it's not fair on you that you have to assume you will have them (and therefore are not able to make any plans of your own) but then he pitches up and leaves you alone.. that's NOT fair.

As it works out, we have the DSDs every bank holiday, but that's because their mum wants it that way and it's agreed well in advance.

Hope that's of some help.

lunavix Tue 23-Jun-09 19:33:12

I'm not viewing it as a competition, it took a long time to reach our agreement and I don't know how it's kept under control?

The 300 is everything he gives us. Not for me, for the kids.

Haribosmummy Tue 23-Jun-09 19:42:24

Has it been through the court and been agreed by a judge?

I would say that what you need is a court order, that way both of you are bound by it and neither one can change it (unless by mutual agreement)

£300 doesn't seem enough... especially as he's already looking to reduce that (and presumably wants to tell you what you can and can't do with it) - you def. need a CO to get that in place.

Do you think he's acting like this to exert some sort of control over you? perhaps he's not over you? (total supposition on my part - but from what you've said, he seems to think he can continue to tell you what to do / how to live and also seems to think you should be sat at home with the kids IN CASE he decides he wants to see them)

You really do need to get this court ordered in order for it to stop being an issue open for negotiation!

Sassybeast Tue 23-Jun-09 19:49:37

The CSA will require him to pay 15% of his salary for the first child and then another 5% for each other child.

idranktheteaatwork Tue 23-Jun-09 19:49:42

How do you know £300 isn't enough? The op hasn't posted her ex's salary details. He can only pay what he has got, op has already said his csa assessment would be less than that.

Agree with the others that the contact times need defining more though. I would get the papers corrected for the divorce proceedings for your own peace of mind.

Are you able to be firm with him? ie, "no, i'm sorry this weekend is supposed to be my time with the children and we have plans."

I'm a huge advocate of both parents being equally important in a childs life, you don't sound to me like a mother opposed to contact, your ex on the other hand sounds unreasonable, simply refusing to bring the children back at agreed times is not on.
Are you keeping a diary of this?

lunavix Tue 23-Jun-09 20:15:01

I am thoroughly not opposed to contact, I know he's so important to the kids, he's a fantastic dad and loves them to bits (as they do him.)

On the other hand he was a manipulative and controlling husband, and is now a manipulative and controlling ex!

Can you just 'ask' for a court order? Will I end up worse off, will they give him more?

I imagine he's due to pay somewhere between 240 and 300, wouldn't think it was more.

Firm doesn't work, sadly.

I'll start keeping a diary, good idea, thank you.

Ivykaty44 Tue 23-Jun-09 20:42:44

No you can't just ask for a court order grin

You and your ex's solicitors draw up a consent order, you both have to agree to the consent order - and then both sign the order. Once the consent order is signed - there is no going back by you or your ex. The consent order is then sent to the court to be made into a court order and stamped by the judge - now if the judge thinks that the consent order is a bit hmm he maysend it back.

if both you and your ex cant agree on a consent order then you go to ancillary releif - go to court and try to get an agreement, if you still dont agree at the end of this then you go back to court and you take a barrister with you and your ex takes a barrister with him (perhaps) and the barristers state you case and then the judge decides - cost thousands and you will be looking at least £10 thousand to go all the way and possible costs <shrugs>

best to both mediate and come to an agreement and spend twenty grand on the dc....

I really think mediation would be worth another try to see if he can actually say what he wants.

ps - be firm now so he doesn't stay a manipulative ex

Haribosmummy Wed 24-Jun-09 08:08:39

Just want to say... If both parties agree thru mediation and both are happy to have it ratified by the court, then it's not such a long drawn out expensive process.

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