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  • #28154 Report

    sam.dawn
    Participant

    Me and my partner are looking for some advice if at all possible. We have been together since May 2015. I currently live near London with my two children who I have full custody of. There is a court order in place since 2015/2016 which states the maternal Grandmother has the children every other weekend and periods of the school holidays and the mother sees the children at a contact centre twice a month. The mother has been advised to abstain from drugs and alcohol and she should have provided hair strand testing and be having overnight visits with the children by now, but this has not happened. She still seems to be on drugs and has made no effort to provide any hair strand tests and therefore is still attending the contact centre, although she does not always attend. I am looking to move to the East Midlands (an hour and a half away) with the children but we are unsure what process we need to follow. My partner has bought a 3 bed house and is in a steady job and the move would benefit me and the children as she would help provide childcare and financial support and I would be able to work full time and stop receiving benefits. Plus we would be in our own house and the area is generally cheaper. The children currently see their mother at the contact on the first and third Saturday of every month for 2 hours. If the grandmother was in agreement would we be able to change the weekends she has the children to fall in line with the contact centre and offer her additional time in the school holidays to make up for the odd weekend she will loose out on? Also we would agree to pick the children up if they collected them, which I think is fair. If the grandmother isn’t in agreement would this need to go back to court and can the mother have any objection to them moving if it does not directly affect her? When she eventually progresses to overnight visits, the time is to come out of the grandmothers time. The mother and grandmother do not get on and are therefore are not allowed to share contact time. It is not so much the grandmother we are worried about as we have quite a good relationship at present. However, the mother can be very difficult and spiteful and has caused a lot of problems in the past.

    We just need some advice on what our next steps are going forward, what hurdles we may come across and how we would need to deal with them. We do not have the money for legal costs so we want to try and avoid going back to court if at all possible. I am unsure if I would be entitled to legal aid for this due to current circumstances.

    I hope someone is able to help or at least point us in the right direction as we would like to start to process of moving.

    #28172 Report

    Hi Samdawn

    You can always call our single parent helpline.  They will hopefully be able to see what options are available.  They will be busy so do expect to wait before your call is answered, but all calls are free.

    Hope this helps, Justine

     

    #28322 Report

    sam.dawn
    Participant

    Thank you for your response.

    I understand you point about the travel, but it states in the court order that they must collect the children and we must pick up but I would be happy to compromise when it’s discussed with them.

    The court order specifically states that any time the mother earns i.e. contact out of the contact centre and overnights visits are to come out of the grandmothers time so this is not something we have decided. But to be honest I cannot see it getting to that point as the mother has made no effort to progress any further other the last 4 years.

    The grandmother is also allowed to take the children to see their mother at the contact centre she is simply not allowed to assist the contact outside of the centre like she used to.

    What I am suggesting is:

    Weekend 1 – Grandmothers weekend with contact centre visit

    Weekend 2 – Our weekend

    Weekend 3 – Grandmothers weekend with contact centre visit

    Weekend 4 – Our weekend

    Weekend 5 – Ours or grandmothers weekend (shared out or given extra days in holidays)

    There are only 4-5 months in the year with 5 weeks so I am saying we would give her extra time to make up for those missed weekends which would be 12-15 days.

     

    As stated I live near London so the house prices are ridiculous and therefore we would never be in the position to buy a house here and we feel renting is just a waste of money.

     

    My partner did originally offer to move this way but after discussions I decided I did not want to stay in the area, plus she has an excellent job and prospects where she is now and as previously mentioned it is much cheaper to live. The schools in the area are outstanding and the kids love spending time with partner. I have thought about this a lot and I genuinely think a fresh start would be better for the children.

     

    I just want to know what we need to do in order to get the ball rolling and what process we need to follow. Will we require a solicitor or can if be agreed mutually?

     

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