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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Virginia
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    17

    Question Extracurricular Activities - Custody, Parents Weekend

    My question involves a child custody case from the State of: VA
    My fiance has joint custody of his 6 year old son, this being with a woman he was never married to. They have been seperated along with custody set forth via the courts for almost 5 years.

    The mother since the courts has moved many times now living (in the same state) but differenty county almost 2 hours from where we live, which is the same county my fiance has always lived in since having his son.

    We have many many issues but this one is purely about what my fiances rights are with regards to his ex signing the child up for extracurricular activities that conflict with the times he has with his son.

    Before it sounds like he's a father that isn't looking to be involved or have anything to do with his child playing sports let me explain. These extracurricular sports are in her county and are only 2 min. (and we are talking walking not driving min.) from her home, while these activities are almost 2 hours away from where we reside.

    My fiance only gets his son every other weekend (due to her not wanting him to have him more..I'm sure cause it means more child support money) and because due to his son being in school and the distance he can't get him durring the week. As for every weekend she claims she wants a weekend with him (even though his son says he spends 1 weekend with us and one with his Grandma, which is her mother...so much for her weekend she needs with her child).

    Either way she signed him up, again..because last year she signed him up for football. Knowing his sons love of football we willingly took him to these games on our weekends (which mind you were not every weekend we had him). Now she signed him up for basketball (as always never speaking to the father first about anything or even just letting him know) her way of letting him know was 2 days before he was getting him..she calls to say oh yeah and he needs to be at his basketball practice (PRACTICE, not even a game) Saturday morning by 8:00am. (which again if we live almost 2 hours from there you can see what time we'd have to leave). Plus the fact is he gets his son every other weekend from Friday at 6:30 PM to Sunday at 4:30PM. So if every weekend on Saturdays we had to take from 6am to 1PM doing the extracurricular activity, how is that giving my fiance much quality time with his child.

    Well with this said, and with his son expressing and talking about how much he doesn't like basketball; he told his ex he's not taking his son to these activities. She is now stating that she is going to take him back to court (mind you that's all she does is take him to court or threaten to take him to court...knowing again because it's in her county he has to miss a whole day of work and she's hoping he just gives in). So question is...can she sign him up especially without the father stating before hand he agrees to take to and from on his court appointed visitation days/times to these activities. And if he doesn't can the court actually side with her, which really would be dictating how he spends his court appointed time with his child..which really is not much as it is (4 times a month)? PLEASE HELP, as I personally just received the call from her asking me to speak to talk some since into him about this or she'd just have to take him to court...which I told her I'm not in the middle but my suggestion to anyone would be call the courts because I do not see how she can decide for my fiance what he's going to do when he has his son. Would be the same as if we signed him up for something by our house that required her to drive him to and from there durring the week (week or weekend what's the difference..it's still her time and not something I feel we can DEMAND or tell her how/what she's going to do)....ANY HELP or info would be appreciated..

    Yes I know we need an attorney it's just not in the budget now especially since they aren't cheap.

    do you know if this applies also in the state of Virginia and if the parents were never married how this might play a part. My boyfriends ex lives almost 2 hours away and she has signed him up for a county sport which he has practice every single weekend, one of those weekends obviously being spent with at our house. She signed him up never discussed anything prior to doing so and now is stating because we do not want to bring him (which he doesn't like it, it's basketball) she is going to take us to court.

    I do not see how when my boyfriend only gets his son 4 times a month (due to work and her moving/living so far away from us) how she can sign him up which would dictate how he spends his time with his son. Taking him would require us getting him on a Friday at 6:30PM and turning around Saturday morning getting up at 6:30am to drive almost 2 hours for the practice and not get back home till lunch time or a little after. That would only leave less than 24 hours of physical time he'd have with his child to actually plan and do something he'd like, because we leave to take his son back on Sunday at 4:00PM. PLEASE tell me the just in this.

    The kicker is that the activities she signs him up for are 2 min. from her home, convenient for her. I feel if she really thought about the childs best interest she would of not only spoke the my the father first but also looked into something that would be more of a central location that works for both parents and not just her...but then again this is a typical ongoing thing we have with her. IT's all about her..ALL!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Posts
    9,085

    Default Re: Extracurricular Activies-Custody, Parents Weekend

    Okay, first, you have nothing to say in this regard.

    Second, the father can choose to do what he wants during his visitation.

    If mom signs the son up for things during his time, I would recommend a visit to court... mom is trying to make dad out to be the bad guy... and I wouldn't stand for it a moment.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Extracurricular Activities - Custody, Parents Weekend

    My husband has an almost identical situation to yours. His ex-wife consistently ignores court orders and signs his son up for everything under the sun (especially on his court appointed visits), just so that their time is either cut short, or becomes non-existent all together. Then threatens him with court action if he refuses to take the kid to an event he doesn't even want to participate in anyway. There used to be a time that she actually gave him advance notice of an event, but that happened at the drop-off times of 8:00pm Fridays, and the event was to take place at 7:00am the next morning. Now, she doesn't even do that, and my husband has had to fight her all the way, and battle with the kid's coaches or whatever, to get some sense of what/when/where etc. She has also resorted to lying to their son about times and events, just to throw everyone off and make it appear as if my husband is being an uncaring father who refuses to participate!

    I'm not sure how the courts work in your area, but the family courts are a joke where we live. My husband is currently battling her on her THIRD contempt charge, that even the judges have put on record, and still nothing has been done. It's one thing to file a contempt motion, but when you actually have numerous judges clearly advising her and her counsel that they are in contempt, yet do nothing about it at all, it becomes quite discouraging.

    It's tough being a step-parent on the sidelines watching all of the madness occur, but like the others have said, this is really your husband's fight. It sucks, I know, but that's the way it is. The only thing you can do, is help your husband find a hell of an attorney who is willing to fight for your step-son and husband's rights. And if she's threatning court action, tell her go right ahead. Hopefully you will get a judge that understands what she is trying to do, and they can put a stop to it. Good luck to you.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Posts
    9,085

    Default Re: Extracurricular Activities - Custody, Parents Weekend

    It is actually simpler than that.

    The father chooses what is done on his time. Period.

    Mom does not get to make decisions about what is done on Dad's time. Period.

    If Dad doesn't want to take Junior, he doesn't have to. I assure you that the sign up sheet for peewee football in no way obligates Dad to do ANYTHING... and it certainly doesn't supersede the court ordered visitation parameters.

    Tell Mom to take a nice and satisfying hike.

  5. #5

    Default Re: Extracurricular Activities - Custody, Parents Weekend

    Quote Quoting cyjeff
    View Post
    It is actually simpler than that.

    The father chooses what is done on his time. Period.

    Mom does not get to make decisions about what is done on Dad's time. Period.

    If Dad doesn't want to take Junior, he doesn't have to. I assure you that the sign up sheet for peewee football in no way obligates Dad to do ANYTHING... and it certainly doesn't supersede the court ordered visitation parameters.

    Tell Mom to take a nice and satisfying hike.
    You are absolutely correct, and I agree completely. Although our cases are similar, there are some differences. My husband does exactly what you said, and within a week he's served with a summons to appear in family court. This has been going on continuously for the past 4 1/2 years with no end in sight. But what can ya do...simple or not, it's still frustrating to have to deal with.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Michigan
    Posts
    28,656

    Default Re: Extracurricular Activities - Custody, Parents Weekend

    That's what happens if the parents don't agree - one of the parents can take the case back to court and ask the judge to decide the issue.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Virginia
    Posts
    17

    Post Re: Extracurricular Activities - Custody, Parents Weekend

    Trust me I by all means know I have no say so in any dealings with the ex and child..and honestly I've found the less I involve myself the less stress it is on me. Some things I can't help but be involved or give my advice (at least on the side with him, of course I'm not calling the ex girlfriend/mother like I'd like to and tell her what I think). But in certain situation I do feel I have a right to give my input/advice to him because certain things have an effect on my life being we share a life together.

    Point is this has nothing to do with him being one of those bad dad's that is being stubborn or just despite the psycho ex girlfriend/mother he's not going to take his son to do this or that because he knows that's what SHE wants...NO it has to do with these extracurricular activities are 2 min. (and again we are talking walking min.) from where she reside, while it's almost 2 hours from where we live. So would my fiancé love to be able to be more involved with afterschool educational, sporting or different events ofcourse (not only with what she signs him up for, but just because as a good father he wants to be involved with different things his son is involved with) but with how over the years she's moved from (at least 5 times) and gone from being 30 min. away to now almost 2 hours away and with my fiancés job that makes all that impossible (and she knows it, but yet uses it against him). Point is she signs the child up without discussing any possible time conflicts based on court ordered visitation days/times, and just pulls the “single mother card” stating these are things for HIS son and he’s required to do these things and if she has to take him to court for the judge to tell him or order him to do them that’s what she’ll do.

    So yesterday after dropping him off back to her; she called, wanting his final answer of if he’ll be taking his son to these extracurricular activities, which he said no…because come Tuesday morning when the courts open she'll be down there filing a motion with regards to she feels he HAS to as the father bring his son to these events when they fall on his weekend. (mind you #1 it’s basketball which the child DOESN’T even like or want to go #2 she’s getting ready to sign him up for baseball which I know for a fact is a very time consuming activity where the kids can be at the fields all day long). In other words she again wants to dictate what he does on the petty 4 times a month he has his child.

    Sad thing...she lives in Culpeper, and so far Culpeper County court systems as backyard as they are (sorry anyone that lives there but any court house that closes because the judge is out sick, well that's backyard) well they have screwed him, I can't tell you how many times. Plus even if she doesn't win or even if when they see this come across and they know it will be thrown out, they will still serve him with these obnoxious papers, he'll have to miss a days’ work (where she'll just go in late) and if anything they'll walk in and the judge will say there is no grounds for her to force him to do this. He'll give some stupid explanation of how a good father would do this because it's about the child..but we won't go there because I feel also a good judge wouldn't allow a mother to use the court system to bully/harass her child’s father and get away with it (when she's soo obvious about it). I truly believe if this would be moved to Prince William Courts by no means would they allow this to continue, the child is 6 years old and in that time frame I'd say my fiancé has been served with her petty BS "take you to court because I want what I want and I'm the mother" over 20 times. She even got busted out in the courts for lying to them about him not paying one of his child support payments when he had, and trying to have him thrown in jail. To the points where instead of the courts doing something about her filing false allegations, they suggested to him that to ensure he doesn’t find himself in court again for this or have to worry about it they judge could set up to have the money come directly from his income (which he did because he didn’t want to have to worry about missing more work because she lied).

    Point is we are dealing with a mother that is not all mentally there, it is not beneath her to lie in courts (and play mind games with her child to get him to believe these stories she makes up) and not only is the court system in VA not equal with regards to fathers but when we are talking about small town backyard Culpeper Courts it's even worse.

    It’s obvious my fiancé needs an attorney, he went to talk to one and get some legal advice and they highly recommended he hire an attorney and even a private investigator…but all that cost $$$$$$$ and with as much as he pays in child support and on top of that the court ordered him also to pay 53% of all out of pocket medical expenses (which I find interesting when his child support includes medical). They expect 2 people that obviously cannot communicate based on the number of times they’ve been in court in the past 6 years to work out some stupid medical receipts (co pays, cough medicine, children’s motrin..you name it) how petty is all that….I know laws and things vary per state so if anyone knows has had something similar in the state of VA and can offer some much needed advice since we can’t afford to hire an attorney currently it would be much appreciated. I’d even be willing to provide my personal email so we could chat back and forth if you’d like or be willing.

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