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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Posts
    2

    Default Absent Father of 13 Years Now Seeking Visitation of Daughter Who is 15. Florida

    My question involves a child custody case from the State of: Florida

    My daughter and I live in Florida. Dad lives in Arizon, where he moved to from Florida.

    My daughters dad has had no contact with her since she was 2 and she is now 15. I was awarded sole custody with 0 visitation for him because he was on his way to prison for arson. When he was released 2 years later he moved to AZ.

    I am in support of visitation and they have already spoke on the phone and have texted each other a few times. I talked to dad and told him we needed to get something through the courts for visitation. He wants me to file. First, I am going to request he get supervised visitation even though he lives so far away. Second, I don't think I will file. If he wants to see her, he can jump through a few hoops in order to do so, right?

    The questions, should I file or should I have him file? And, what would be reasonable visitation after so many years. Will I most likely get the supervised visitation since it has been so long? How long do you think before she goes to AZ for visitation? ? Also, when she does start going to AZ will he be responsible for paying to get her there and back?

    Thank you

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Somewhere near Canada
    Posts
    35,894

    Default Re: Absent Father of 13 Years Now Seeking Visitation of Daughter Who is 15. Florida

    I have to commend you here...many, many CPs would be so against the idea of the absent parent coming back into their lives that they'd fight tooth over nail to prevent a relationship between the NCP and the child. And here you are willing and able to help your daughter with the transition. Kudos, Mom

    That IS good parenting.

    Now the legal stuff.

    It's up to you whether or not you want to file yourself. And you're correct in that supervised, graduated visitation is appropriate here and that is likely what the court will order. Visitation will be in your community at first, and it may take a year before kiddo will be going to AZ (unless you and Dad think it's appropriate sooner than that).

    "Reasonable" would be a few hours per week to begin with. Then as kiddo is more comfortable - it could happen instantly, it might take months - and all goes well, it will progress to overnights and eventually weekends and longer periods.

    You may find that you're required to pay at least part of the costs - but in your situation, I'd request that Dad be responsible 100%. I don't think this is unreasonable to request.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Posts
    2

    Default Re: Absent Father of 13 Years Now Seeking Visitation of Daughter Who is 15. Florida

    Thanks for your help and the kind words.

    The next question I have may only be opinion and I will just have to wait until it happens to know for sure.

    I talked to her dad yesterday evening. I told him that as long as he was willing to agree to supervised visitation with my sister and her husband as the supervisors (?) then I would be in support of him coming sooner than court for visitation. He said that he had to wait until June because of not having any more vacation time at work. I suggested to him that he get a flight on a Friday evening after work and then leave Sat evening or Sunday morning. Again, he said he had to wait until June. It may just be my hatred and disgust for him, but this is sending up red flags to me and the reason I decided not to file. I dont see him wanting to come here for a year for visitation. But I do think that is a good time frame. I am going to start counseling for my daughter asap as I am afraid she is going to end up hurt again. I just dont see him coming 1x per week for a year. I doubt he will come 1x per month for a year.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Posts
    424

    Default Re: Absent Father of 13 Years Now Seeking Visitation of Daughter Who is 15. Florida

    I think offering him limited, supervised visitation in your community is very fair.

    If he wants more than that, let him file in court.

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