Talk

Advanced search

Mumsnet has not checked the qualifications of anyone posting here. If you have any legal concerns we suggest you consult a solicitor.

Custody Questions- Urgent advice please

(12 Posts)
chocogirl77 Sun 05-Dec-10 00:00:26

A friend of mine is thinking of leaving her DH, long story but he and his family have treated her appallingly.

DH has already threatened to ask for full custody of her son, and her MIL currently looks after DS 2 days a week whilst she works. As her DS is only 15 months old, what are the chances of her husband getting majority custody in this case, and should she make alternative arrangements for childcare before she leaves?

Thanks for any advice .

MrsPickles Sun 05-Dec-10 00:08:49

Is she planning on taking her son with her? Does her DH work at present? Who currently does the majority of the day to day care on the days that her DS is not with her MIL? If it is her, the courts are reluctant to change the status quo of the primary carer without grave substantiated concerns about that carer. ASsuming there is no concern over her care of her DS that can be proven, then the court would be very unlikely to award her DH residence. A shared residence order, maybe, if currently she and her DH share the day to day care of her DS. Using her MIL for childcare while she works doesn't mean that her DH will be at an advantage in any way.

MrsPickles Sun 05-Dec-10 00:12:19

What she should NOT do is leave her DS behind when she leaves, even if she plans to apply for residence of him later as these things can take many months - by which time her DH would be well established as her DS's primary carer and it would be difficult to change that.

colditz Sun 05-Dec-10 00:21:06

She MUST take her son with her, or the DH will be assumed the primary carer and the courts will not rock that boat.

If she is already the primary carer, and she takes her son, then the courts will not rock that boat.

HOWEVER>

Will the MIL hand the son straight over to his dad? because if the husband TAKES the son, and won't give him back, then without a court ordered residency order, he will then be assumed to br primary carer and she will have l;ost him for good.

So I would stop the MIL doing the childcare if there is the remotest risk of her being a dick and colluding with the ex h to keep the son.

I will reiterate - the person doing the caring at the time it goes to court is the person who gets to keep the child.

chocogirl77 Sun 05-Dec-10 00:50:57

Thanks for the advice.

Her son will stay with her. She works 4 days a week, so two days in nursery for DS and 1 day at home.

The family have played very dirty with her in the past to keep control, so I'm not putting anything past them now, which I why I'm asking for advice so they cannot trace anything back to her.

Her DH works full time and has often stayed in hotels during the week so he didn't have to commute, so she is definately the primary caregiver at the moment.

chocogirl77 Sun 05-Dec-10 00:50:57

Thanks for the advice.

Her son will stay with her. She works 4 days a week, so two days in nursery for DS and 1 day at home.

The family have played very dirty with her in the past to keep control, so I'm not putting anything past them now, which I why I'm asking for advice so they cannot trace anything back to her.

Her DH works full time and has often stayed in hotels during the week so he didn't have to commute, so she is definately the primary caregiver at the moment.

MrsPickles Sun 05-Dec-10 08:43:52

If the situation Colditz describes happens, your friend could make an emergency application, a drastic change of the current situation in such an underhand way would be taken seriously by the courts and hopefully dealt with urgently. Presumably in the medium term her DH couldn't actually look after the son at present given his working arrangments, so if his MIL kept the child after looking after him she (or any other of the DH's family members) they would not be someone with parental responsibility so your friend could ask for the assistance of the police in getting her son back if say MIL was threatening not to retun and the DH was away working.

She possibly should be wary about suddenly changing the childcare arrangements - think about the effect on DS, and no doubt her DH will use that as an example of her being unreasonable and resistant to his family, but in the long run its probably not something that would be determinitive in a residence application. Obviously I dont know the background.

STIDW Sun 05-Dec-10 10:23:39

Your friend would be well advised to see a solicitor to find out where she stands and what options there are before doing anything else. The usual legal advice is not to leave the former matrimonial home until arrangements for the finances and children are in place. The exception to this would be if it isn't safe to stay.

There is no need to manipulate the situation. Generally courts are reluctant to disrupt a child's sense of security and established bonds so changing the established status quo it is an uphill struggle. If the father works full time and is away a lot he will have difficulty claiming he is the parent with the majority of care. Shared residence is a possibility but shared residence doesn't necessarily mean children with each parent 50% of the time, it can be in different proportions.

AnnaMaree Sun 05-Dec-10 13:44:25

Have you seen Question the Expert? Its a website where you can ask questions and get advice from a lawyer. Its not free, but not too pricey and really good. Here's the link: www.questiontheexpert.com

CarGirl Sun 05-Dec-10 13:48:45

Womans Aid will give her advice and help, it may be worth her arranging some unpaid leave from work to sort herself out whilst she gets herself rehomed. It sounds as though she is the victim of emotional abuse and WA willl def help her.

chocogirl77 Sun 05-Dec-10 14:55:47

Thank you for the advice.

I'm going to print this thread out and give it to her, I've already advised that she sees a solicitor straight away before taking action, but understandably, She didn't want to do anything before making sure She didn't lose her son over this.

Thanks again.

chocogirl77 Sun 05-Dec-10 14:55:47

Thank you for the advice.

I'm going to print this thread out and give it to her, I've already advised that she sees a solicitor straight away before taking action, but understandably, She didn't want to do anything before making sure She didn't lose her son over this.

Thanks again.

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now