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  1. #1
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    Unhappy Access to Children

    I'm really hoping someone can offer me some good advice here as I have two children with two different mothers (both from long term relationships, I may add)

    SItuation is as follows:

    My daughter is 8 years old. A few years back, her mother tried to stop me from seeing them without good cause, resulting in me taking her through court and obtaining a court order for access. The mother has again stopped me from seeing her, without good reason, and I have now not seen my daughter in just over a year (personal circumstances have prevented it too). I am now in a position to do something about this, so what action can be taken based on the fact I have a court order?

    My son is now 10.5 months old. Me and his mother split up around a month or so ago, and the weekend following my departure, I saw him on the Sunday for a few hours (as I'd been told to bring him back early-ish, to coincide with her parents anniversary celebration). Since then it has now been 3 full weekends since I saw him, even though I've sent her texts asking if I can have him on the Sunday's (she never responded to any of the texts). I've held my tongue for just about as long as possible now, and I want to get things sorted, for both him and for my daughter.

    If anybody could advise me of what I can do, and how best to go about it as I have in the past been a bit hot-headed, and want to ensure that the route I take is the best one for me and my children.

    Thanks

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    Default Re: Access to Children

    @Kati @PAWS - anybody you know on here that might be able to advise?

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    Default Re: Access to Children

    Quote Originally Posted by RJH View Post
    @Kati @PAWS - anybody you know on here that might be able to advise?
    possibly @leclerc @Crazy council @Diana M

    have you seen a solicitor about the possibility of enforcing the contact order @RJH ??
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    Default Re: Access to Children

    Quote Originally Posted by Kati View Post
    possibly @leclerc @Crazy council @Diana M

    have you seen a solicitor about the possibility of enforcing the contact order @RJH ??
    No, but I'm not really in a position to be paying out lots of money for solicitors, so I want to get as much background understanding of what I can do to so that I can represent myself as I did the first time. Obviously for my daughter, I have considered enforcing the contact order, but given that it's been a year or so now, does that lessen the chances of it happening?

    With regards to my son, I know the procedure with that and quite happy to go ahead as I did previously for my daughter, but just wanted to reclarify what was the right and fair thing to do.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Access to Children

    Quote Originally Posted by RJH View Post
    II have two children with two different mothers

    . . . and I have now not seen my daughter in just over a year (personal circumstances have prevented it too). I am now in a position to do something about this, so what action can be taken based on the fact I have a court order?

    My son is now 10.5 months old. Me and his mother split up around a month or so ago, and the weekend following my departure, I saw him on the Sunday for a few hours . . . . I've held my tongue for just about as long as possible now, and I want to get things sorted,

    . . . . I have in the past been a bit hot-headed.
    What roughly were the "personal circumstances" which prevented you seeing your daughter for a year. No details needed but was it due to health, work, travel reasons etc because I would expect a court to ask that question.

    And what did you mean by you being "hot-headed" over contact in the past? Is that issue now resolved?

    No no one will doubt your sincerity to want what's best for your children but once you 'go legal' others may start to analyse everything so is there no hope of sorting this amicably or through Mediation in the first instance, especially since you'll be dealing with two separate mothers who may have different reactions to court intervention.

    It would be nice for the siblings to get to know each other too

    Di
    I am a Litigation Executive at Joanna Connolly Solicitors a firm which specializes in consumer credit.

    This forumís site rules donít allow me to give advice by PM but if you need to contact me please email di@joannaconnollysolicitors.co.uk . Our initial advice is always free.

    Any posts I make on LegalBeagles are for information and discussion purposes only and shouldn't be seen as legal advice. Any advice I provide is without liability. If you are unsure please seek formal legal guidance or contact your local citizens advice bureau at https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Access to Children

    Dear RJH,

    I am very sorry to hear your situation, it is sadly not uncommon these days.

    Firstly you have already used the courts so I am presuming that you are happy dealing with paperwork etc.

    I also note that you understand you can be hot-headed- and I have every sympathy for how you must be feeling- you obviously recognise that this is perhaps counter-productive.

    The situations are different and so I will comment on them separately. With your daughter there is a court order in place and therefore your daughter's mother is in breach of this order. I would suggest that you e-mail her a letter that states;
    the date you last saw your daughter, the fact you haven't seen her in a year and that you would like to re-establish contact. If you are able to please detail the personal reason that stopped you having contact. Ask directly for the contact to re start and then suggest that over the next month or so you have several shorter contacts to allow your daughter time to get back into the swing of things. Perhaps then suggest that contact should be back to that ordered within 2 months. The purpose of the letter is to try to get contact up and running again but if that is not successful to form a piece of evidence showing what you have tried to do to re establish contact should enforcement proceedings be needed.

    With regard to your son, I would act quickly and very gently at first. Again I would write/e-mail and set out the contact you want, remember short and often is the key with a very young child especially if they are being breast feed.

    If you continue to be ignored you might need to suggest mediation.

    E-mails in these situations can cause problems, remember a judge might look at it in the future and if you are frustrated when you draft a reply leave it and re read it later before you send it.

    best wishes and Good Luck!

    I really hope this helps
    I work for Howlett Clarke Solicitors. Any posts I make on LegalBeagles are for information and discussion purposes only and shouldn't be seen as legal advice. Any advice I provide is without liability. If you are unsure please seek formal legal guidance.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Access to Children

    Quote Originally Posted by Diana M View Post
    What roughly were the "personal circumstances" which prevented you seeing your daughter for a year. No details needed but was it due to health, work, travel reasons etc because I would expect a court to ask that question.

    And what did you mean by you being "hot-headed" over contact in the past? Is that issue now resolved?

    No no one will doubt your sincerity to want what's best for your children but once you 'go legal' others may start to analyse everything so is there no hope of sorting this amicably or through Mediation in the first instance, especially since you'll be dealing with two separate mothers who may have different reactions to court intervention.

    It would be nice for the siblings to get to know each other too

    Di
    Personal circumstances including being in the middle of a bankruptcy, which at times has had an effect on housing, health, etc. Obviously, being bankrupt leaves me limited as to what financial outlay I can afford.

    Hot-headed in the sense that we would always end up in a verbal altercation regarding my daughter which never got anybody anywhere. Mediation isn't an option unfortunately in either case as my daughters mother and my son's mother will not respond to calls or texts, which I have to say I find massively frustrating.

    As for going legal, I already have a court order for my daughter, and as for being analysed, I am not bothered about that as I am quite prepared to answer questions and have people poke around my life as I have nothing to hide.

    My son's mother said that there would be no issues with me seeing him, but obviously it now appears that she is going against her own statement there. She has a daughter from a previous relationship that ended up going through court, so you would think she'd have some sense really.

    I would love the two of them to get to know each other. I am now in a position where I am in a secure job, financially OK (as in being able to afford to live), and in a secure job, so to that extent my life is now a lot better.
    @FionaC @Diana M

    Sorry Fiona, I didn't see your message below until just! But regarding emails, is it better to send letters via the post and recorded?

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    Default Re: Access to Children

    Also, it might be worth me noting that I do not wish to disclose my address to either of the mothers as I know how they have been in the past and I feel that I would have people watching / stalking me, which in my sons mothers case has actually happened already (in the sense that I went to a pub on my lunch for food and she had someone watching me telling her how much I spent!)

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Access to Children

    I'm not sure you can keep your address clear if you go down the court route because each party would be served papers with the address on. There is no reason for the child to necessarily be delivered for contact to the house as that can be dealt with on a neutral ground away from the house....
    "Family means that no one gets forgotten or left behind"
    (quote from David Ogden Stiers)

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Access to Children

    Quote Originally Posted by leclerc View Post
    I'm not sure you can keep your address clear if you go down the court route because each party would be served papers with the address on. There is no reason for the child to necessarily be delivered for contact to the house as that can be dealt with on a neutral ground away from the house....
    @leclerc I was given the option last time and i withheld but then decided to give her a chance, so unless things have changed I can't see them having an issue with it providing i give good reasons.

  11. #11
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    Default Re: Access to Children

    Quote Originally Posted by RJH View Post
    Personal circumstances including being in the middle of a bankruptcy, which at times has had an effect on housing, health, etc. Obviously, being bankrupt leaves me limited as to what financial outlay I can afford.

    Hot-headed in the sense that we would always end up in a verbal altercation regarding my daughter which never got anybody anywhere. Mediation isn't an option unfortunately in either case as my daughters mother and my son's mother will not respond to calls or texts, which I have to say I find massively frustrating.

    As for going legal, I already have a court order for my daughter, and as for being analysed, I am not bothered about that as I am quite prepared to answer questions and have people poke around my life as I have nothing to hide.

    My son's mother said that there would be no issues with me seeing him, but obviously it now appears that she is going against her own statement there. She has a daughter from a previous relationship that ended up going through court, so you would think she'd have some sense really.

    I would love the two of them to get to know each other. I am now in a position where I am in a secure job, financially OK (as in being able to afford to live), and in a secure job, so to that extent my life is now a lot better.
    @FionaC @Diana M

    Sorry Fiona, I didn't see your message below until just! But regarding emails, is it better to send letters via the post and recorded?
    @Diana M @FionaC - any updates as I'd love to get things started.

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    Default Re: Access to Children`

    @Diana M @FionaC @leclerc @Kati

    I have posted the letters up that I intend to send, could you let me know that they are OK?

    The one for Kerry is for my daughter, the one for Claire is for my son.

    Appreciate your feedback.

    R
    Attached Files Attached Files

  13. #13
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    Default Re: Access to Children`

    Dear RJH,

    I expect you have now sent the letters you have attached. I have read them both and think they are clear and to the point and fine to have sent.

    If the letter regarding contact with your son hasn't gone and you can be flexible in the contact arrangements you might want to consider offering an alternative contact pattern as well of several times a week for a couple of hours. This isn't of course possible for many people but is often the ideal for a very tiny child who will need frequent and consistent contact.

    I hope the letters get the response you desire.

    kind regards,

    Fiona C
    I work for Howlett Clarke Solicitors. Any posts I make on LegalBeagles are for information and discussion purposes only and shouldn't be seen as legal advice. Any advice I provide is without liability. If you are unsure please seek formal legal guidance.

  14. #14
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    Default Re: Access to Children`

    Quote Originally Posted by FionaC View Post
    Dear RJH,

    I expect you have now sent the letters you have attached. I have read them both and think they are clear and to the point and fine to have sent.

    If the letter regarding contact with your son hasn't gone and you can be flexible in the contact arrangements you might want to consider offering an alternative contact pattern as well of several times a week for a couple of hours. This isn't of course possible for many people but is often the ideal for a very tiny child who will need frequent and consistent contact.

    I hope the letters get the response you desire.

    kind regards,

    Fiona C
    Hi @FionaC

    50/50 as for the responses. I am now seeing my daughter again which is great, but as for the mother of my son, I have had absolutely nothing.

    I will be filling in the forms ready for court if I don't get any response by the end of the 29th, as I wasted far too much time waiting around with my daughter the first time to mess around again. Any idea what the fee is now, as I presume it has gone up since last time?

  15. #15
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    Default Re: Access to Children


    Children


    Applications under the Children Act 1989

    Application type Fee
    Request permission to issue proceedings or for an order or directions to be made concerning the child(ren) - with the exception of applications for care and supervision orders, applications for breach of or for revocation of an enforcement order £215
    Application for breach of or for revocation of an enforcement order £95
    Applications to issue new proceedings under the Children Act 1989 are defined as any application for an order where there are no proceedings for the child(ren) currently being considered by the court.
    If proceedings under the Children Act 1989 are already being considered for the child(ren) the application fee for applications within proceedings will be charged. See the section headed Applications within proceedings for further details.
    The court leaflet ‘CB1 - Making an Application – Children and the Family Courts’ provides more information on the types of Children Act applications and who can make them.
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    Default Re: Access to Children

    Whilst it's on my mind as well, let's just say I had my son for the day, am I 'legally' bound to tell his mother exactly where I am or not, providing he is back with her at an agreed time? Any info of note on this would be beneficial too, as I'm sure that this will be something that she moans about

  17. #17
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    Default Re: Access to Children`

    Quote Originally Posted by RJH View Post
    I am now seeing my daughter again which is great
    I'm pleased to see progress has been made between you, your daughter and her mother.

    DI
    I am a Litigation Executive at Joanna Connolly Solicitors a firm which specializes in consumer credit.

    This forumís site rules donít allow me to give advice by PM but if you need to contact me please email di@joannaconnollysolicitors.co.uk . Our initial advice is always free.

    Any posts I make on LegalBeagles are for information and discussion purposes only and shouldn't be seen as legal advice. Any advice I provide is without liability. If you are unsure please seek formal legal guidance or contact your local citizens advice bureau at https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk

  18. #18
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    Default Re: Access to Children`

    Quote Originally Posted by FionaC View Post
    Dear RJH,

    I expect you have now sent the letters you have attached. I have read them both and think they are clear and to the point and fine to have sent.

    If the letter regarding contact with your son hasn't gone and you can be flexible in the contact arrangements you might want to consider offering an alternative contact pattern as well of several times a week for a couple of hours. This isn't of course possible for many people but is often the ideal for a very tiny child who will need frequent and consistent contact.

    I hope the letters get the response you desire.

    kind regards,

    Fiona C
    Hi FionaC,

    Just an update to see what your thoughts are.

    I maybe could have been a little more flexible, however, the things I have asked for in that letter are pretty much the same things she has in place with her ex-partner about their daughter. In court would this make a difference as she has already been dragged through it once by him and had to agree with pretty much what I've asked for straight up?

  19. #19
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    Default Re: Access to Children

    Dear RJH,

    If you have to go to court the Judge is only going to be concerned with the welfare of the child who is the subject of the proceedings and what is best for them. It might help however if it fits in with the mum and will therefore allow her to agree to something she is familiar with and has already established a pattern of in the family.

    best wishes,


    Fiona C
    I work for Howlett Clarke Solicitors. Any posts I make on LegalBeagles are for information and discussion purposes only and shouldn't be seen as legal advice. Any advice I provide is without liability. If you are unsure please seek formal legal guidance.

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    Default Re: Access to Children

    Quote Originally Posted by FionaC View Post
    Dear RJH,

    If you have to go to court the Judge is only going to be concerned with the welfare of the child who is the subject of the proceedings and what is best for them. It might help however if it fits in with the mum and will therefore allow her to agree to something she is familiar with and has already established a pattern of in the family.

    best wishes,


    Fiona C
    Hi @FionaC

    Just a quick update, I'm still in contact with my daughter and see her regularly.

    On the other hand, I still have had no contact with my son, and won't be in a positon to pay for the court fee until Jan 31st, at which point the papers will be going in. I have missed his 1st birthday through this, and Christmas too, and I sent cards for both occasions with no response. Interesting still that my parents sent presents via the post, to which no thanks or message has been received back.

    Hope you're well and had a good Christmas, and I appreciate everyone's advice so far.

    R

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    Default Re: Access to Children

    You are very welcome RJH.

    I hope everything is resolved speedily for you and that 2017 is then a great year!

    kind regards
    I work for Howlett Clarke Solicitors. Any posts I make on LegalBeagles are for information and discussion purposes only and shouldn't be seen as legal advice. Any advice I provide is without liability. If you are unsure please seek formal legal guidance.

  22. #22
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    Default Re: Access to Children

    I can see a post you've made on someone else's thread so I've copied it here where you may get the help you need more easily



    Quote Originally Posted by RJH View Post
    So, tomorrow is the day I can finally lodge the papers with the court. Just so I know I've got the right forms, can someone please clarify or put a link to the forms I need?
    Di
    I am a Litigation Executive at Joanna Connolly Solicitors a firm which specializes in consumer credit.

    This forumís site rules donít allow me to give advice by PM but if you need to contact me please email di@joannaconnollysolicitors.co.uk . Our initial advice is always free.

    Any posts I make on LegalBeagles are for information and discussion purposes only and shouldn't be seen as legal advice. Any advice I provide is without liability. If you are unsure please seek formal legal guidance or contact your local citizens advice bureau at https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk

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