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Custody battle threatened

(5 Posts)
caitlinmc1977 Mon 17-Mar-14 22:30:05

My partner announced he was leaving in January, we have a 17 month old (I got pregnant by accident, he wanted me to terminate) he also has three children by his ex wife who I have been step parent to for the last few years. He has had our daughter one night a week since we split, but is now threatening going for 50/50 custody (he has this with his other kids) I am struggling financially, yet to hear about tax credits etc. he has contributed nothing financially since leaving, I've had to rent a house I can't afford, and he's accused me of sexual abuse because I got pregnant when he didn't want another child!

FamilyMag Mon 17-Mar-14 22:39:00

Get some legal advice ASAP. He can try for 50/50 custody but I'd be surprised if he got it for a child as young as yours. You must get advice though, make sure you're prepared for whatever he does.

Maybe it's all take? A lot of fathers threaten to go to court, but the reality of it, and the expense, often puts them off...

balia Mon 17-Mar-14 22:46:48

Break-ups are messy, horrible, emotive. It's a tough time. Nasty things get said. All that aside, 1 night a week doesn't seem very much, really. I know the LO is very young but has he suddenly gone from being 'oh great, one night is plenty, I'm happy with that' to '50/50, I'm going to court'?
Or, given that he parents his other children 50/50, has he been asking for an increase in the time for a while?
Would mediation be a possibility?
Finances would be a separate issue, I'd have said.
And it's Residence, not custody.

STIDW Mon 17-Mar-14 23:04:49

What where the working/child care patterns of both parents before January? Clearly children's routines have to be negotiated and changed when parents separate but the needs of the children are important. Generally speaking children benefit when many routines remain the same as before so as not to upset their sense of security and established bonds.

Arrangements for child maintenance and where a child lives are separate issues. If you can't agree child maintenance between yourselves you can apply to the new Child Maintenance Service and they will calculate how much should be paid. There are different rates depending on the income of the payer. Someone who earns less than £5/week is assessed at the nil rate or if their income less than £100/week or they are in receipt of certain benefits/allowances/pension child maintenance is calculated at a flat rate of £7/week.

Someone with a gross income between £200-800/week will pay the basic rate which is calculated as a percentage of the paying parent's income minus deductions for shared care.

STIDW Mon 17-Mar-14 23:20:37

balia wrote;

And it's Residence, not custody.

Orders for "custody" and "access" were replaced with "residence" and "contact" orders many years ago. It's about to change so by the time an application has been made instead of residence/contact orders it could be the new Child Arrangement Order which is due to be introduced next month.

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