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  1. #1
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    Jun 2017
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    Default How to Appeal a Custody Order

    I would not sign for my wife to obtain passports or to travel with our minor children outside the US so she filed an RFO for modification of custody. I objected to her request to be given sole legal custody and to apply for and obtain new or replacement passports for our minor children without my written consent. I explained in my responsive declaration that she is mentally ill, has been suicidal, takes psychoactive medication, has physically assaulted me on several occasions, and is a flight risk. She is an extremely hostile aggressive parent.

    The court's orders from that hearing are: The court orders the parties to reasonably cooperate to fill out any necessary forms for the renewal of the passports of the children within 10 days. The court orders that Respondent shall hold the passports once they are renewed. When notice is given by Petitioner via talkingparents.com of plans to travel internationally, Respondent shall give Petitioner the children's passports within 48 hours of that notice. Petitioner shall return the passports to Respondent as soon as the children return from any international travel. The parties shall each be equally responsible for one-half of the cost to renew the children's passports.

    I have appealed and now have to submit a Civil Case Information Statement. What I am reading is that appeals have successfully reversed and remanded a family courtís custody modification because the family court made inadequate factual findings to justify a substantial change of circumstances. May 30, 2012 opinion in Tillman v. Oakes.

    My question is should I check the appealability box:
    An order or judgment under Code Civ. Proc., sect 904.1(a)(3)-(13) or
    Other; Order with insufficient evidence per California Code Sect 354

    Or something else?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
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    Default Re: Civil Case Information Statement

    Well, first you need to establish that you've actually got a valid reason to appeal. Not liking the result is not a valid reason to appeal.

    Did you offer proof of your claims that Mom is all of those things you alleged? You probably want to use case law that actually comes from your state.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Civil Case Information Statement

    Which doctor diagnosed your ex as mentally ill? What's wrong with what the court said? Doesn't that say you get to keep the passports until they travel? So she can't just up and leave the country unless you give her the passports.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Civil Case Information Statement

    Quote Quoting qwaspolk69
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    Which doctor diagnosed your ex as mentally ill? What's wrong with what the court said? Doesn't that say you get to keep the passports until they travel? So she can't just up and leave the country unless you give her the passports.
    I think that's his (lack of) point. He doesn't want her to go - period.

    He's going to fail, but I have no doubt that we'll hear about it no matter what.

  5. #5
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    Jun 2017
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    Default Re: Civil Case Information Statement

    Isn't my concern that she would abduct the children reason enough to appeal? Our custody orders before the modification required my signature for her to leave the US with them. The court modified it so she does not.

    I have two police reports and two child welfare services reports. She has a DV arrest but no conviction and a police report from when she dialed 911 because she was considering taking her own life and was taken to a hospital and put on suicide watch. I don't believe that she would deny being on psycoactive medication for the last 9-years.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Civil Case Information Statement

    Quote Quoting Dogmatique
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    I think that's his (lack of) point. He doesn't want her to go - period.

    He's going to fail, but I have no doubt that we'll hear about it no matter what.
    I get that. Just thought I'd ask.

    Quote Quoting joeippolito
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    Isn't my concern that she would abduct the children reason enough to appeal? Our custody orders before the modification required my signature for her to leave the US with them. The court modified it so she does not.

    I have two police reports and two child welfare services reports. She has a DV arrest but no conviction and a police report from when she dialed 911 because she was considering taking her own life and was taken to a hospital and put on suicide watch. I don't believe that she would deny being on psycoactive medication for the last 9-years.
    She can't just take the children out of the country if YOU have the passports. Courts modify things all the time.

    No conviction on DV - didn't happen legally. Arrest doesn't mean anything. People get arrested all the time and get charges dropped or dismissed. Being suicidal doesn't mean someone is a bad parent either. Sometimes crap happens.

    I didn't ask about her medication. I asked you which doctor diagnosed her as mentally ill? Also what is her mental illness? My point is you just can't say someone is mentally ill if they're not diagnosed by a doctor.

    What's the custody arrangement?

  7. #7
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    Jun 2017
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    5

    Default Re: Civil Case Information Statement

    The order says I have to give passports to her with 48 hrs notice. Custody is 50/50 although I was told by an attorney that I could get 100% but I can no longer afford an attorney. She was diagnosed with Major Depression Recurrent however she quashed my subpoena for her medical records. What difference does it make which doctor? it was an MD.

    Any suggestions on what to demand in a subpoena for her medical records that would not just get quashed?

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Civil Case Information Statement

    Quote Quoting joeippolito
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    Isn't my concern that she would abduct the children reason enough to appeal? Our custody orders before the modification required my signature for her to leave the US with them. The court modified it so she does not.
    Nope. Not a reason to appeal and, presumably, your concern was already noted.


    I have two police reports and two child welfare services reports. She has a DV arrest but no conviction and a police report from when she dialed 911 because she was considering taking her own life and was taken to a hospital and put on suicide watch. I don't believe that she would deny being on psycoactive medication for the last 9-years.
    Police reports are typically considered hearsay and you would be expected to have the officer testify in court. Being on medication shows the court that she is acknowledging the issue and doing something about it.

    By all means consult a local attorney, but I do not see anything which would be cause for appeal.

  9. #9
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    Oct 2006
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    Default Re: Civil Case Information Statement

    Quote Quoting joeippolito
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    Isn't my concern that she would abduct the children reason enough to appeal? Our custody orders before the modification required my signature for her to leave the US with them. The court modified it so she does not.

    I have two police reports and two child welfare services reports. She has a DV arrest but no conviction and a police report from when she dialed 911 because she was considering taking her own life and was taken to a hospital and put on suicide watch. I don't believe that she would deny being on psycoactive medication for the last 9-years.
    No, being unhappy with the ruling is not a valid reason to appeal. You have to be able to demonstrate that the judge made an error of law or abused his discretion. I do not see any error of law here, and no abuse of discretion either.

  10. #10
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    Mar 2016
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    Default Re: Civil Case Information Statement

    Quote Quoting joeippolito
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    The order says I have to give passports to her with 48 hrs notice. Custody is 50/50 although I was told by an attorney that I could get 100% but I can no longer afford an attorney. She was diagnosed with Major Depression Recurrent however she quashed my subpoena for her medical records. What difference does it make which doctor? it was an MD.

    Any suggestions on what to demand in a subpoena for her medical records that would not just get quashed?
    I just asked if a doctor diagnosed her that's all. I still don't think it will matter in your appeal either way. Having a mental illness doesn't make someone a bad parent in the eyes of the law.

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