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under what circumstances can the father get "custody"?

(30 Posts)
irestmycase Wed 30-Jun-10 19:31:19

I know custody isn't the right word, but I can't think what is.

Just had arguement with the ex and he is threatening to take me to court (this is UK) to get custody of DD. I hope it's just an empty threat, but in case it isn't, what could happen?

HecateQueenOfWitches Wed 30-Jun-10 19:33:06

If you mean that the child would live with the father and the mother would have every other weekend or whathaveyou, then I think custody is the right word.

I think - I hope - that the courts decide who has custody based on the child's best interests.

tvaerialmagpiebin Wed 30-Jun-10 19:37:06

It's "residence".
Well how old is dd? Do you both have parental responsibilty / any other court order in place / where does she spend most time / what contact arrangements are in place...

court would take all the above into consideration.

irestmycase Wed 30-Jun-10 19:49:05

DD is 9. She is with me mostly, he sees her on a very strict & inflexible schedule - every other weekend, Saturday morning to Sunday afternoon. We both have parental responsibility. Inflexibility is - he says - my punishment for having left him.

He wants her to live with him and for me to do the every other weekend thing.

Don't know if it is relavant, but he is a manipulative emotionally abusive bully.

tartyhighheels Wed 30-Jun-10 19:51:32

it will no not happen, no way no how

he is just being a shit

irestmycase Wed 30-Jun-10 19:56:51

thank you Tarty - he most definitely is a shit. Always has been, probably always will be.

tvaerialmagpiebin Wed 30-Jun-10 19:57:40

hmm..... well the court is most likely to go for a "no order" situation as you already have an arrangment in place, they tend to go with the status quo unless there are very good grounds for change. As she is 9 the only thing they might say is to offer an evening in the week as well as the alternate weekends. Dpeends how far away from him you live. That ends to be the "classic" package of contact.

I think she is also old enough to express a preference as she is 9. What does she think?

I don't think you need worry. And I can sympathise as your ex sounds just like mine.

Meglet Wed 30-Jun-10 19:59:22

I quote the solicitor I saw when my XP threatened he would get custody of the dc's, "A mum would have to be lying in the gutter with a bottle of meths before a court considered giving custody to a dad".

It was probably a bit of a sweeping statement, but he was a grey haired middle aged solicitor so I think he knew his onions.

HecateQueenOfWitches Wed 30-Jun-10 20:01:30

What would happen if you call his bluff?

Does he really want her to live with him or is he using it to scare you?

If you know he is just saying it to hurt you, you could perhaps say well, she is your daughter too, I think it would be good for her to be with you for a while...

If he would then drop it?

However, if there was a snowball's chance in hell that he'd go for it, or that he'd use it to tell her that "mummy doesn't want you" in order to hurt you, then it's shit advice and you should ignore it totally.

So it comes down to - what's his motivation and how can you turn it back on him?

irestmycase Wed 30-Jun-10 20:03:23

I've offered evenings in the week, Friday nights, Sunday nights, extra time in the school holidays - all of it is turned down because he has to go to work to earn the money to pay for what I have screwed out of him.

I'm telling myself that I shouldn't worry, but they do know where to poke you, don't they?

irestmycase Wed 30-Jun-10 20:06:56

oops - x-post

Hecate his motivation is to scare me, I think. I'm reluctant to call his bluff, because he would use it against me. I'm fairly sure it's a bluff, but not 100%. IYKWIM?

I'm hanging onto what Meglet said. My solicitor said something similar when I divorced him a couple of years ago. However, the years with him have taken their toll and reassurance from others is always welcome.

tvaerialmagpiebin Wed 30-Jun-10 20:17:46

OK you have to look at it this way. He has been offered more contact time and has turned it down (do you have that in writing btw? all good evidence if so). He is unlikely to go to court asking for more contact if you have already offered it. Court would laugh in his face and see that he is trying to get to you.

Gah. My ex is just like this. They put getting one over on you above the welfare of their children. Pricks.

pinkkoala Fri 02-Jul-10 09:09:14

i am in a similar situation, i have an awful husband, but i want to seperate but every time i suggest it he saus he will take me all the way to get custody of dd (5yrs), i have been the main carer, i have worked part time, he works full time.
I am too scared to make that first move as i am not prepared to takr that risk.

Also i can't afford a solicitor and am not sure if i qualify for legal aid.

i know in my heart that me and dd would be much better emotionally without him but am also scared of the financial implications of me just earning.

babybarrister Fri 02-Jul-10 10:37:21

I do not agree at all with the "advice" given by the middle aged solicitor! Courts look at who is the main carer and what the pattern has been up to now - not what sex they are. If there are welfare considerations, these would obviously be taken into account. Emotionally bullying though is always going to be very hard to prove ...

As for a child's wishes, the rule of thumb is 10 although in rare situations the court would take into account the views of a child aged 9.

Resolution has a list of legal aid solicitors - try one and find out whether you aer eligible for legal aid. Good luck!

DinahRod Fri 02-Jul-10 10:53:14

Given he had turned down extra access offered it sounds like empty words.

I'm involved helping dh's bf with his access case because his soon-to-be-ex wants to take children abroad to live with new man and he'd be unlikely to see them again. The difference in his case is that he takes the dcs to school every morning, has them midweek (adjusted working pattern), Saturday, pays for all their schooling and home help, is toilet training the youngest himself (mother leaves it to the help), cooks for them, takes them to parties/swimming etc and is just a hands on dad. Court appt soc worker advises 50/50 but his case is unusual as he is the more actively involved parent. Doesn't sound much like your ex! The only difference is your dd is older and her wishes may well carry more weight even though she is not yet 10.

But as I said before it sounds like bluster.

PerArduaAdNauseum Fri 02-Jul-10 10:58:35

Threatening to take away children is one of the classic weapons in an abuser's arsenal, and why solicitors need to know that you've been emotionally abused - don't make light of it, don't mutter about a few isolated instances.

Can I suggest that both irestmycase and pinkkoala get in touch with Womens Aid and see if you can talk to one of their outtreach workers? I know you've already left irest - but he's still trying to control and abuse you and it doesn't hurt to polish up your strategies for dealing with the cunting ex...?

DinahRod Fri 02-Jul-10 10:59:25

Sorry ought to have added he could have gone for full residency on the strength of his case - but the outcome still would be a gamble and one he's not prepared to take with the children's lives. I just wanted to show you what a really strong father's case looks like - your ex doesn't have one.

irestmycase Fri 02-Jul-10 17:29:58

PerArdua - hadn't thought of speaking to Women's Aid because I've already escaped. Thanks for the tip, though. Can't hurt to talk to them

And Dinah - it's good to know what a strong case looks like. My ex certainly isn't that hands-on. Didn't even do that much when we were married!

NicknameTaken Mon 05-Jul-10 13:55:37

Pinkkoala, don't stay with your H because of his threats to get residence of your DD. He won't succeed.

IanD Wed 14-Jul-10 20:17:28

interesting thread my partner has just had this threat made to her by her ex, he threatened 3 weeks ago he was going for full custody and txt her a load of fabricated evidence that he is going to use, hes also emotionally abusing his dd by saying when your older you can choose to live with me (shes 4) hes also saying alot of ridiculous things to her about me and her mam to try and turn her against us, the man is evil and will lie to anyone who will listen including a court, strange thing is he wanted his daughter so badly he moved 100 mile away from her so couldnt even keep up his overnight stop with her, if it does go to court i hope they see through all his lies...

mother12345 Wed 26-Nov-14 20:51:34

Hi i am recently divorced and my physically and mentally abusive ex has applied for residency of our 8 yr old, he is making up lies, trying to use everything against me to win

Chunderella Thu 27-Nov-14 16:21:17

Is there any kind of official paper trail documenting the domestic violence mother? Such as police reports, or even discussions with a GP?

mother12345 Thu 27-Nov-14 16:44:55

There should be police reports, yes and my gp knows all about it also

Quitelikely Thu 27-Nov-14 16:49:21

I'm confused as to why if you have offered him extra contact he has turned it down?

IMO this is more about money than anything else.

Chunderella Thu 27-Nov-14 19:34:33

That's helpful mother. Do you have a solicitor? If your income is low enough and you can prove you have been a DV victim, you could get legal aid.

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