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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Ok first of all this situation has nothing to do with me, however it does involve a good friend of mine and I just recently got into a heated discussion about the issue. I know there is a wealth of knowledge on here so was just asking to see what other peoeple have gone through or thought. Any lawyers on here? MarineOPLaw? Ok here is the situation:

Mother has two girls by two different men. She has never been married, and she has sole custody of both children; ages are 7 and 5.

The mother has a boyfriend whom has been living with her for about 4 months. The boyfriend has just recently bought a brand new house.(again not me) The mother and two girls are going to move in with him. They will be moving about 20 min away from their current residence. The father wants to put the child in a christian school but with the move the mother does not have that option. However the Mother has found a great preschool/kindergarden near the new home. Father is upset because he is not getting his way so has recently filed for custody because of the "mothers lifestyle" in other words the move. So my questions are; Does the father have a case?
Should the mother worry? What options are there? What would typically happen? Any other comments?
 

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Re: WAY O/T Need opinions/advice on custody battl

Matt, I deal with these on a weekly basis. The father has a case, but will have to prove that the mother is 1)unfit, or 2) the living situation is having-or will have-and serious negative impact on the children. If I were the mother the first thing I would do is spend a couple hundred dollars and get some legal advice from a local attorney who is familiar with the Judges in that jurisdiction. I would not be losing sleep over it, as most likely this is a P.O.'d father who is more upset that the ex is living with another man than he is worried about the welfare of the children. Wish her luck, but I think she's on pretty firm ground.
 

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Re: WAY O/T Need opinions/advice on custody battl

What Tom said. Here in our county it is almost imposible to get custody changed after it has been granted in the court. The only ways are listed above, but it usualy requires some very signifigant proof of being unfit or detrimental to the children.
 

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Re: WAY O/T Need opinions/advice on custody battl

Like Tom, and Jeff have said it takes a good reason to get custody changed. I dont think that just the issue of the school will be enough reason.
 

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Re: WAY O/T Need opinions/advice on custody battl

I would have to agree with what has been previously stated, but also add that whatever judge it goes before has a great deal to do with it as well. Most judges that I have seen are very reluctant to remove a child from a mother's custody, even under circumstances that would make mmost people think that the mother had no business with a child. It is difficult to tell and mostly depends on the judge and what sort of case the attorneys are able to present. If there are allegations of a lack of suitability or lifestyle issues that could place the child in jeaopardy then DSS will probably become involved and the child(ren) should be assigned a guardian at lietem (which is usually an independant attorney who is supposed to represent the childs best interests without regard to the parents.)

Pretty much the skinny is that it depends on many factors, but short of serious circumstances she should be fine.

Can I just say that I hate custody issues.

-web
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Re: WAY O/T Need opinions/advice on custody battl

Yea just found out some new news. It appears that the mother has found out the fathers motive (I think). The 5 year olds Grandmother died last week, the fathers step-mother. It appears that the Grandmother left the 5 year old a good hunk of change in her will. The father didnt get that much because the two of them didnt get a long. Three days after she passed away he gave her the papers for custody. So basically the sole custody parent gets the cash or is in charge of the money. Thats why I think he is trying to get custody. Hopefully her lawyer can convince the judge if that is the case

Money.......the root of all evil
 

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Re: WAY O/T Need opinions/advice on custody battl



Yes, it is a sound byte!
 

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In spite of the money thing, I would have to say that the fathre has a case. It depends on the Judge you get. She is moving her 2 chidren from different fathers into yet another man's house (whom she is not married to). I don't know her or the Father, but it seems like no one is looking out for the best interests of the children.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Is there a place where you can go to check out information on the Judges in the area? Or what kind of ruling he has made in other cases? Do they put stuff like that out on public records
 

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All rulings are public record. However, you would probably spend days researching which cases he has ruled on, then sorting out any relating to child custody cases. As a starting point, any cases of this type would be classified as either a DR (domestic relations), or a JP (juvenile paternity). The JP's are sealed and you won't be able to look at them due to federal laws regarding juvenile privacy, similar to adoption laws. In short, I wouldn't attempt it unless I was retired and had absolutely nothing else in the world to do.
 

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My opinion, tell your friend to get the best damn lawyer they can. quite honestly, the realtion of lawyers to all the jokes that go around isn't made up. the best lawyer can just about get whatever ruling he/she is loooking for for their client.

I got the best I could find for my divorce. Although I haven't needed his full services yet since is been a civil divorce so far, but by god I wanted the best if the **** hit the fan.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Im new to the area and dont really no very many peoeple, How do you know if you have a good lawyer. What do you look for in finding "the best" lawyer?
 

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referals! you go also go in to meet with the lawyers, they almost always have a free consultation offer. That is the time that you are interviewing them! then they will also give you an evaluation of your situation, but don't forget, that's when they are selling themselves, so take it witha grain of salt. ask them about their previuos cases and what the outcomes were. Ask thme what the toughest case was then ask them if they won.

just remember, the best lawyer you can get, not the best you can afford, this is your kid your talking about, is there anything you wouldn't pay for them?

Note: I'm saying you for anyone that's loooking for advice, not you specific, but in this case, your freind.
 
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Re: WAY O/T Need opinions/advice on custody battl

Two questions...what visitation rights did he have prior?
How involved was he with the child prior to the death of the grand mother?

Most judges will ask why the sudden change. If he or she finds out that he was not too involved until the death of the grandmother...they will be pissed and most likely not get anything.

Don't waste money on a lawyer just yet. Go to the first court hearing. This is where he will have to show his reasons. Based on how this goes, you will know if you need a lawyer or not. This will be real informal for the most part which will give you a chance to say things you might not otherwise get to during an actual trial. Remember, almost all judges are more concerned with the well being of the child. As long as she can show that the child is better off with her (and her boyfriend...stable home enviroment?)...nothing will change....in fact, he stands the risk of loosing any visitation rights he has now if it can be shown that his motivation was for money.

When I got divorced 9 years ago from the x-bit*h, I got primary custody of both our girls....yes thats right, the dad got the girls. Nothing wrong with their mom....except the girls said they wanted to live with me.
 

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Re: WAY O/T Need opinions/advice on custody battl

Wonder if that is a procedural diffrence between California and here. I went with a buddy of mine for his hearings and while there was a pretrial confrence with the atorneys where they were supposed to work it out, All the other side did was tell him how bad he was gonna get screwed if he did not sign full custody over to his crack smoking ex. He ended up wining custody because she had abandoned the kids for 3 years and suddenly (child support was an issue) wanted full custody. He does ok now but she calls DFC on him monthly and they give him hell. Child support division won't go after her for support for some unknown reason but He has his kids.
 
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Re: WAY O/T Need opinions/advice on custody battl

You tend to hear about the outrages cases here in CA....but most of the judges here have seen and heard most of the BS. The ol' system of letting the women get the kids every time is gone. If both sides can't agree, then the judge will decide for you...in most cases he goes guidlines which is basically 50/50 unless one side can prove something is amiss.

In fact, getting a lawyer in many cases hurts....it usually implies that you have a weak case and need a professional gun slinger. Go in solo, hold your head high and hold you ground. It shows that you know you are right and don't need someone else to fight you battles.

Rio, as you know, lawyers will say anything.....I love messing with them in court....the best one was when I was on a pretrial related to the a DUI case....the lawyer was challenging my ability to operate the breath machine....he got real pissed when I said "Operation is simple, you just follow the instructions....it's so simple even an attorney can do it". Even the judge chuckled.
 

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Re: WAY O/T Need opinions/advice on custody battl

"Operation is simple, you just follow the instructions....it's so simple even an attorney can do it".

I gotta remember that.

I enjoy messing with them as well, Especialy on search an siezure. It is priceless when you get on the stand and the attorney is fumbeling trying to find a case to site and you interupt him with the case site. The look on his face was worth a bundle. I think he said 10 words after that and none of them were questions to me.
 
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