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Access, PR and Court....what happens?

(22 Posts)
ladyjadey Thu 16-May-13 19:41:29

Ex is threatening court action since CSA involvement. He had no interest at all in DD (almost 3) until he had to pay. No word from him at all since her birth.
when she was born I did not object to contact, he chose not to bother.
Now I object. For her sake, I honestly believe she is better off without the that abandoned her.
I realise many people will not agree, but this is how I feel and I intend to fight him at every turn.
Ex is not on BC and has no PR. he is threatening solicitors via FB messages, none of which I have responded to.
The firm he mentions are Russell Jones and Walker. Googled them and they have a different name so I think he is trying to scare me. He was in Leeds the last I knew, making his most local branch Wakefield. This branch only does personal injury claims.

can anyone tell me what he will be told if he actually sees a real, non made up solicitor? What will he have to do to get PR? If he gets it can he stop my partner (who has brought her up) from adopting her? What will a battle for access involve and what are the costs likely to be?

Any advice is appreciated

Lioninthesun Thu 16-May-13 21:39:17

This is my nightmare!
My ex hasn't seen DD since she was 6mo. If he turned up in the next few months she may well be young enough to adapt, but I hate the idea he will just turn up years down the line when she is more aware and confuse all of the good groundings.
Ex took me to court as he didn't want to pay CSA, but he said he had a solicitor and it turned out to be a lie. I honestly think that he will be trying to scare you. Until you hear from the Court you don't need to do anything. I wouldn't respond to him as he is clearly angry and not being very constructive. The Court won't hold that against you. Only thing I would say is that they will probably want you to have offered some form of contact or be open to it in the future - our judge suggested my ex see DD in a Contact Centre so we didn't have to have any contact, but he didn't follow that up.
Watching with interest in case I ever find myself in your situ. Good luck smile

ladyjadey Thu 16-May-13 21:54:36

Thank you! He saw her the day she was born, then when she was4 days old and that was the last we saw of him. She was actually in hospital with a nasty eye infection at 11 days old when he said to me, via text, I can't deal with this, you look after her. So I did!

I will not really believe him until I hear from a solicitor, I just want to be prepared for what could happen, just in case. I think that 3 years down the line we have gone beyond FB messages! If he is serious he will have to go down the legal route with me, I am not giving him access only so he can reduce his maintenance!

Lioninthesun Thu 16-May-13 23:01:53

Access and maintenance aren't linked! Do you get maintenance through CSA or do you have a private agreement? If you are worried he will stop then I would call CSA as it is the only way you can guarantee he has to pay (sure you know that all already!).

I hope someone can help you a bit more as I don't know much about PR but think it doesn't make much difference to contact. All he has to confirm is that he is the bio dad in Court and if he has been paying maintenance they will take that into account. Usually judge would want them to see the child (see all of the posts about men not turning up/cancelling at the last minute) at any cost so if he does bother to go via Court try to seem open minded but do try to fix something firm - every other weekend at a Contact Centre for example. Sadly there isn't much you can do if he goes against this as even when they mess the child around there doesn't seem to be any support and they can come and go as they please nothing new there then! Just wait and see though, no point getting worked up if he is just blowing hot air smile

lostdad Fri 17-May-13 12:26:20

What will he have to do to get PR?
He will get PR if you sign an agreement form. Or if he takes you to court and convinces a court it is in the best interests of your DD for him to have PR.

He's done himself no favours whatsoever leaving it 3 years ago. Why has he taken it so long?

If he gets it can he stop my partner (who has brought her up) from adopting her?
Yes, he can. If he has PR he is your equal in law when it comes to your DD. You couldn't do that.

What will a battle for access involve and what are the costs likely to be?
Depends. And - depends.

If he's determined you can dig in for a long one (my one was 5 years, 15 hearings and it cost my ex around £20,000 - my ex refused to negotiate at every step and after all that my son is with me 40% of the time). I represented myself and it cost me about a tenth of that.

If you hire a solicitor expect to pay at least £170 an hour; £1500 a day for a barrister if you use one. If things get really heated you can expect to pay several hundred a month even when there isn't a hearing (and if there is and you take a solicitor don't be surprised by a £1,000 bill).

The bottom line is that if he is determined he will get contact although it will be slow. If I were advising you I would ask him politely, civilly what he has got in mind and consider mediation to sort it out. You may well not want to do this, but believe me it's a walk in the park if it gets nasty - and if that happens, the only people who win is the solicitor/barrister.

balia Fri 17-May-13 12:30:16

If he gets a real solicitor, he will have to pay for it (no legal aid for family cases anymore) and he should be advised to offer mediation. He doesn't have to have a solicitor to apply for PR and contact, though. After application you would be served and then a first hearing date would be issued (you have to go). At that first hearing, Cafcass may try to mediate. If there are no safety issues raised (in terms of the safety of DC in his care) you are likely to be encouraged to offer some kind of contact as it is seen to be in the best interests of the child to have a relationship with both natural parents. Fighting him at every turn will be very expensive (think £thousands) and may be counter-productive.

However, it doesn't sound as if he is serious - if it is just about money he may drop the idea of a court case when he finds out how much it is going to cost.

LisaMed Fri 17-May-13 15:03:37

There used to be a firm called Russell Jones and Walker in Leeds, they are now known as Slater & Gordon. Years ago they did do family work.

So I suspect he is talking rubbish about a firm of solicitors who he used to know the name of back before Feb 2012. He has not recently consulted them or he would not use that name.

He will hopefully lose interest once he realises that it can cost a fortune to get solicitors involved. Wishing you luck.

ladyjadey Mon 20-May-13 14:17:19

Thanks everyone.

I am fairly sure he is full of crap, but it's nice to try to be prepared if he does take it further.

For now i'm going to sit back, watch and wait. If i have any official (ie non facebook) contact from him I will see a solicitor and discuss my options.

I think ex is a big waste of fresh air and I will try not to worry (easier said than done......)

kittycat68 Mon 20-May-13 17:29:16

ladey jadey: You have another active tread on this, Prviously you said that you chased him through the CSA actively as you you wanted him to pay child support!!! you have the child support in place so why are you trying to get out of contact, your daughter is entiled to have a dad in her life . You are telling a slightly different story here!

Lioninthesun Mon 20-May-13 22:22:40

I think he was able to have contact before but chose not to?

ladyjadey Tue 21-May-13 22:13:55

He has chosen not to have contact, he was welcome to have it until he decided he didn't want the responsibility.
I have never stopped him.

He only wants to know now to try to get out of paying maintenance.

I cannot make this any clearer, he didn't want contact and didn't want to know but I never did anything to stop him.

Lioninthesun Tue 21-May-13 22:15:37

Just because he is paying the Court can't make him see her, just as much as it doesn't make him entitled not to see her if he stops. It isn't pay per view, merely about the welfare of the child.
Any more from him to date?

Lioninthesun Tue 21-May-13 22:17:06

I am in a similar situ and have never stopped ex seeing DD. He chose not to but has dragged us over hot coals re money instead.

Lioninthesun Tue 21-May-13 22:19:44

I am wondering though, if your partner adopted your DC, would the bio dad still have to pay CSA?
Biologically still his but if under another name...?

ladyjadey Tue 21-May-13 22:21:46

Not a word from him since message re. Threats of legal action.

He isn't actually paying yet, but will be in the near future.

I have had 3 messages from him since the CSA got onto him. Not once has he asked how she is, anything about her, nothing. All I have heard is I want this and I'm having that. I can't say that feels to me like he cares one iota.

And yes I do have a similar thread in legal stuff, because I found that bit later and wondered if it may be more appropriate to post there rather than here for advice on the legal process etc.

ladyjadey Tue 21-May-13 22:25:01

I don't know on the last point lion, but I would assume yes. He isn't on BC and has no PR now yet he has to pay. If I marry someone else he will still have to pay. Not sure if that applies in adoption by my new partner.

Lioninthesun Tue 21-May-13 22:49:24

Honestly if you have offered contact then there is no issue. Only trouble is for your DD suddenly having this man appear, and especially if he doesn't have her best interests at heart.
My ex even turned up at our house begging me to stop CSA with claims I had caused him to drink himself into liver failure (he had been hospitalised for mental health issues relating to alcohol years before we even met) and I was 'making' him do it by forcing him to pay. Not once, even on our doorstep, did he ask about his DD, even when he heard her cry for me from inside the house.
It sounds like the same situ and he will get bored or decide the legal side will cost more. I hope so anyway!

balia Tue 21-May-13 23:51:18

No, it doesn't apply if an adoption takes place. He relinquishes his responsibility to the child. Otherwise biological parents who give their children up for adoption would be paying maintenance.

kittycat68 Wed 22-May-13 09:04:27

i totally agree its not pay per view, but if he is now asking for contact you should not stand in his way, whilst you may think hes a s**t dad, your child has a right to the contact, you have actively pursued him to stand up to the mark and be a dad (finacially) and now he wants to try you say No! the fact is you cant make him be a good dad, thats up to him but you shouldnt stand in his way either, which is what you are doing.

ladyjadey Wed 22-May-13 14:21:36

I'm not doing that, I have said already I will not stop him IF that is GENUINELY what he wants.

Whiny messages on facebook with lies about solicitors do not convince me that is the case. I believe his intention is to get out of paying by any means possible, not to see DD because he wants to accept responsibility as a father.

If he really means it and contacts me officially, via a solicitor, we can come to an agreement about some small amount of supervised contact until she is settled enough. I am not handing her over to a stranger with no formal conversation being had. I need to know it is on record and that she is safe, I have no idea where he lives or what he is doing or who with. No parent in their right minds would hand their child over in this situation, particularly when you read about children being murdered by absent parents when contact has just been introduced!!

If I am standing in his way by needing some reassurance that DD is safe, then here I will stand until hell freezes over.

Lioninthesun Wed 22-May-13 15:08:09

Lady I know what you mean - I have no idea who ex sees/where he lives and the thought of him trotting off into the sunset with DD when he doesn't even know her what she eats/when she sleeps etc, is a minefield. I think they will suggest a Contact Centre though. That way the two of you don't have to see each other and they are supervised.
I'd leave it up to him to be honest. If he wants to see her he will make the effort to find these things out and not just issue silly threats.

ladyjadey Wed 22-May-13 15:13:40

yes, it's a scary thought! I know I'm doing the right thing here. I posted on MN just to try and get some info about these things and prepare myself/DD.

I have found a contact centre locally since posting, which is good to know so I don't just have to hand her over.

I am sitting tight for now as I do think this is just him spouting hot air, but if we do get past this point at least I have an idea of what to do!

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