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How to stop ex taking daughter?

3 replies

Heiderose · 08/11/2013 10:11

I'm writing this for a friend as she doesn't have interest access and I don't know what to advise her.

She has an 18 month old and is 4 month pregnant, high risk. Last week she found out her partner (and children's father) has been cheating on her. He moved out yesterday and is no longer on the tenancy agreement. Yesterday she also admitted that he'd hit her once before. We all knew he had anger issues but not that he'd been physically violent.

My friend is worried that he might take her daughter away. He has threatened this before.
He has also just been through a 2 year fight to get access to his older daughter and we are pretty confident his family would suggest taking her if they thought they might lose contact like they did with the older daughter.

Is there something she can do to stop him taking her and not returning her until they can sort everything out?

Also completely clueless on where to start with custody, residence, contact etc. how does she go about doing everything?

She's a bit of a mess right now and obviously with the high risk pregnancy we all want to help her and make things easier for her.

OP posts:
Lonecatwithkitten · 08/11/2013 13:06

Probably the fastest way is to set up reasonable contact arrangements so he sees his daughter regularly and is not 'scared' he will lose her. I am assuming he has not been violent towards the children.
If it was me I would put in writing that I would like to set up contact arrangements so that the DD has regular contact with Dad supporting her relationship with her Dad.

EggsandBake · 08/11/2013 13:25

Yes agree with Lonecat. Get contact established at regular set times as long as she doesn't think he is a danger to the child.

Next step, get a contact agreement signed by both of them via solicitor. If he did take and not return the child, this could be used as proof that he was breaking their agreement.

My ex has made these threats. It is horrible. Our agreement says that ds main residence is with me and he will have contact with his father (they don't talk about custody anymore). Also that I am to keep his passport, that gives me some peace of mind.

(Note I am in Scotland so it may be slightly different if she isn't)

If he has been emotionally, verbally or physically abusive she should get in contact with Women's Aid. Her local one will be able to reassure her and perhaps point her to a trustworthy solicitor who has experience of this sort of thing.

If they can agree details between them, there is no need to go to court (and it is best avoided for everyone's sake). If they can't agree, family mediation is an option but if he has form for being abusive and manipulative it can be very unpleasant, as he may use it for point scoring/ranting rather than putting the child's needs first. She needs to concentrate on her and her new child's health so she shouldn't feel pressured into going to anything.

Treat it like a business negotiation, this is what you offer but secretly this is what you are willing to accept. She is quite right to set boundaries eg only to contact her by email, handover with third party or in public if she feels better that way.

Spirulina · 08/11/2013 14:51

don't rely too much on solicitors though....nothing with them is legally binding

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