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  • u6c00
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11 Jul 12 #342451 by u6c00
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Have Cafcass been in contact? I suspect they will need to do a safeguarding report which includes talking to both parents about their concerns, contacting the police about any criminal record and contacting social services to find out if the child is ''known'' to them.

In my case, my ex made a lot of accusations of alcohol/drugs/violence (untrue of course!) so Cafcass recommended supervised contact. In your case, if your ex is not making any such accusations then it seems that there wouldn''t be much reason for Cafcass to recommend supervision at all.

In your case, should you end up going to court and your ex is inflexible when it comes to the contact in negotiations, it may be worth refusing the offered 1 hour per fortnight supervised, and instead going in front of the magistrate/judge and letting them decide. If your ex can''t give any reason why it must be supervised, hopefully they will order in the interim that you have unsupervised contact, and maybe for longer. I don''t know whether this is good legal advice, maybe someone with more knowledge can say whether this is a good strategy and what the risks associated with it might be.

I remember reading an excellent post by someone who self-repped in a contact dispute. It contained the lessons learned at each stage. I will try and find it and post a link later.

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  • Bobbinalong
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11 Jul 12 #342471 by Bobbinalong
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ffc, looks like your stuck with this for now, you HAVE to keep your side clean and go along with whats arranged at present.
Have faith in the system, I did, when you get to court, are you self repping?, you know of course you dont dis the mother, you just put forward all your reasons for having more contact and building on it.
Remember there is no accusation or evidence that you are a poor parent, remember you re both equal, no reason why you cant have decent contact.
So, dont go there in court, dont enter into debate about your competence, it is not in question until you start responding to questions about it, so just go over it. Not an issue.

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11 Jul 12 #342560 by ffc1991
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u6c00 wrote:

Have Cafcass been in contact? I suspect they will need to do a safeguarding report which includes talking to both parents about their concerns, contacting the police about any criminal record and contacting social services to find out if the child is ''known'' to them.

In my case, my ex made a lot of accusations of alcohol/drugs/violence (untrue of course!) so Cafcass recommended supervised contact. In your case, if your ex is not making any such accusations then it seems that there wouldn''t be much reason for Cafcass to recommend supervision at all.

In your case, should you end up going to court and your ex is inflexible when it comes to the contact in negotiations, it may be worth refusing the offered 1 hour per fortnight supervised, and instead going in front of the magistrate/judge and letting them decide. If your ex can''t give any reason why it must be supervised, hopefully they will order in the interim that you have unsupervised contact, and maybe for longer. I don''t know whether this is good legal advice, maybe someone with more knowledge can say whether this is a good strategy and what the risks associated with it might be.

I remember reading an excellent post by someone who self-repped in a contact dispute. It contained the lessons learned at each stage. I will try and find it and post a link later.


Coincidentally rang up CAFCASS 1st thing this morning and have been told they wont call me until a couple of days b4 the court case is this correct? couple of days really doesen''t seem enough time for me but that''s what iv''e been told. Have my 1st mediation meeting tommorrow at 2PM hopefully it goes better than i expect fingers crossed. Also having contact with my daughter on Saturday for 1 hour.

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11 Jul 12 #342562 by ffc1991
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Bobbinalong wrote:

ffc, looks like your stuck with this for now, you HAVE to keep your side clean and go along with whats arranged at present.
Have faith in the system, I did, when you get to court, are you self repping?, you know of course you dont dis the mother, you just put forward all your reasons for having more contact and building on it.
Remember there is no accusation or evidence that you are a poor parent, remember you re both equal, no reason why you cant have decent contact.
So, dont go there in court, dont enter into debate about your competence, it is not in question until you start responding to questions about it, so just go over it. Not an issue.


In my partners last solicitors message she states that i lack the ''''basic skills'''' to be able to care for my daughter. Do i not defend myself in this case? Can i actually just ignore questions that i''m asked etc?. I''m self repping yes. As of yet no accusations of violence, drugs, abuse etc has been bought up and as bad as my EX is being I dont forsee this either.

I haven''t really got a bad word to say about my EX partners parenting she''s a pretty awesome Mum but obvioiusly dealing with this situation badly. I know why i would like to have contact with my daughter. But as you state reasons why my daughter should have more contact what kind of things should I say?

One of the things I worry about with me self repping is constantly referring to what i want and not what''s best for my daughter. As ofcourse I want to have regular contact with my daughter etc.

Since iv''e last posted I have applied for a transfer of Uni''s and have been accepted at Wolverhampton. So the issue of travelling 200 miles etc, will no longer be an issue. Surely this will show my commitment once more? That im willing to tranfer Uni''s and move home completely for my daughters sake?

Thanks for reading

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11 Jul 12 #342563 by ffc1991
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I''m yet to tell my EX partner about me relocating to her local area. I was thinking i might not even tell her this at mediation. As i believe mediation isn''t going to work. So if she thimks her best ammo in court is the long distance and gives that as her main reason. I can then say i''m moving home/Uni so that concern is no longer valid? If i told her before court it gives her/sol more time to come up with more reasons?

Cheers

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11 Jul 12 #342567 by jslgb
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My stbxh went through this with his first wife at the same age as you. Very similar circumstances too. They split when his daughter was 1 and she moved to a refuge miles and miles away and he didnt have contact for a whole year. When he finally got it to court (took a while to find her) CAFCASS were involved and she made accusations that he lacked the skills to take care of her etc. Cafcass were ordered to make a report, they interviewed them both, him over the phone as he couldnt get all that way at the short notice they gave him (they even criticised him for this in the report) and they his ex wife had to write a statement about her concerns, he was shown a copy of it and given the chance to respond. After this he had to attend a supervised contact session in a CAFCASS office(she was still in a refuge by then and he lived over 200 miles away) with a cafcass officer there, his ex wife and her new fella''s mum. This meeting went absolutely fine given that he hadnt had contact with his daughter for over a year by this point. Cafcass reported back to the court that there were no concerns over contact. Not really sure what happened then - they were really cagey about including me in anything - but he got a contact order for once a month but as his daughter didnt really know him the ex-wife came along to all contact sessions with her fella. This carried on for a while, then she insisted i wasnt allowed to come (i had attended initial supervised contact to support stbxh and get him there as he couldnt drive, it was ex wifes choice to introduce me to the child) and stamped her feet. We went through hell and back going to court and even her own solicitor turned round and told her she was being unreasonable. In the end she moved back to their hometown and continued to drag her feet about being present at contact etc. It took about a year of court visits and revised contact orders for my stbxh to have contact without his ex wife present - partly because he could onl,y make the journey once a month when she was so far away, but mainly because she refused to agree to anything.

Bottom line? Persevere. However long it takes, they will side with you eventually and you will get to see you daughter (beautiful name but please remove for confidentiality reasons!!) and have a meaningful relationship. The road will get rocky but keep the end goal in sight!!

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