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Old 07-11-2011, 06:58 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Exclamation Lack of discretion when ordering child support

Texas child support doesn't back up nor support the non-custodial parent's right to be in children's lives. This is not in support of the children's wellbeing and has caused alienation because custodial parent refuses to facilitate visitation. My ex won his suit to modify custody with the help of is new wife. Between the two, they've manipulated my children who state "I don't have to visit because I turned 16." The court took away my ability to provide for my children while I exercised possession in the manner they expect. Their father made $90,000 and I made half; I was given a 30% child support burden which left me with little to care care of my needs and feed my children when I picked them up. Of course, in the other house they had cellphones, ipods, tv, and more presents from the new extended family. My children told me that I didn't have to know about stuff because they didn't live with me. Of course, they took they cue from the adults who felt entitled to do the following: Visitation with my oldest didn't happen from 2003-2005, I couldn't attend his graduation, he's alienated. My second child blames me for the lack of money at my house; she was groomed to refuse visitation during the last 2 years of high school. I wasn't given the tickets for her graduation either. I lost summer possession because she was working...and her father NEVER agreed to help with transportation costs. I have two underage children and one is concerned about visitation because I don't have money, and the other one is refusing visitation. All of this because at age 12, 10,and 9 they signed a preferred custodian form. I don't blame them for missing their father; they don't know what kind of person he really is. Can I say that his "mental state" bars any communication unless there are court officials who may frown at his lack of cooperation...he's even listed his new wife as the mother of one of my children when signing them for a church event. The courts orders have made it impossible for me to get help because I make more than minimum limits which don't consider that what I am left with is barely enough for just me...let alone three other mouths. And, I don't have time to address these issues during the school year. I need advice on how to best represent myself to complain about the time denied to me, the inability to pay for transportation and food (they moved 45 miles away). I seriously doubt the ability to comprehend the global costs of child support and the inequity of household incomes and how it adversely affects the parent-child relationship. When I heard an Assistant Attorney General tell me that it didn't matter if my children ate only rice and beans with me during visitation (think adolescent girls would like that for 30 days?) I couldn't believe it!!!!
Is there an organization that can see if there are any national civil rights laws violated?

Thanks!!!
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Old 07-11-2011, 07:15 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aidezmoi View Post
The court took away my ability to provide for my children while I exercised possession in the manner they expect!
[FONT=Comic Sans MS][COLOR=magenta]I have no idea what this statement means. [/COLOR][/FONT]
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[COLOR=black]To [COLOR=blue]ERR [/COLOR]is human.[/COLOR]
To [COLOR=darkorchid]FORGIVE [/COLOR]is divine.
[FONT=Comic Sans MS][FONT=Times New Roman][COLOR=red]NEITHER[/COLOR] is my policy.[/FONT] [/FONT]
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Old 07-12-2011, 12:02 PM   #3 (permalink)
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I meant that I could no longer continue to provide my children in the manner they were used to with the extra costs of transportation, 50/50, and food, etc. The irony is that the court mandated parent classes where they discussed how it isn't in the best interest of the child to have one parent indulge on the children. Over the years, they've felt indulged in one home and deprived in the other. That is what the decree translated to. Now, isn't that situation affecting negatively how they feel about visitation?
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Old 07-12-2011, 12:25 PM   #4 (permalink)
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[FONT=Comic Sans MS][COLOR=magenta]I suspect having warring parents that hate each other affects the children. I am sorry for what you are going through but I'm not certain anything can be done legally about parents bashing each other. It's been going on since the dawn of time, it seems. However, I can't think of a single "national civil right" that is being violated by the scenario you describe. [/COLOR][/FONT]
[FONT=Comic Sans MS][COLOR=#ff00ff][/COLOR][/FONT]
[FONT=Comic Sans MS][COLOR=#ff00ff]I know that the "manner in which they are accustomed" is nice, but it isn't some legal right to which they are entitled. I realize your not having as much money as the dad seems inequitable, but honestly---what children desperately need isn't measured in new clothing and name brand shoes. And, at some point, when they are older if "brainwashing" is really taking place, they will resent their father very deeply for his part in that. Too little, too late, I know. My children "do without". but they do not see themselves as being "deprived"---even though they remember a time when their dad was alive that we had more things and went on vacations, etc. Perhaps the key is in attitude and perception. [/COLOR][/FONT]
[FONT=Comic Sans MS][COLOR=#ff00ff][/COLOR][/FONT]
[FONT=Comic Sans MS][COLOR=#ff00ff]Perhaps counseling would help? I don't put much faith in counseling in situations like this, but sadly, while parents war, children suffer---and not because they don't have the latest this or that. [/COLOR][/FONT]
[FONT=Comic Sans MS][COLOR=#ff00ff][/COLOR][/FONT]
[FONT=Comic Sans MS][COLOR=#ff00ff]Good luck. [/COLOR][/FONT]
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[COLOR=black]To [COLOR=blue]ERR [/COLOR]is human.[/COLOR]
To [COLOR=darkorchid]FORGIVE [/COLOR]is divine.
[FONT=Comic Sans MS][FONT=Times New Roman][COLOR=red]NEITHER[/COLOR] is my policy.[/FONT] [/FONT]
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Old 07-12-2011, 10:02 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Thank you, Grace. I do think that he needs counseling. He refuses to communicate outside a forum that I can't afford to maintain (ourfamilywizard). When there is something he wants, he uses the girls as middleman. He and his wife took the girls out of state at the beginning of this month and I couldn't exercise my summer possession. This is just the latest. I do want to go to court, because I don't have the money to hire an attorney, I'll need to represent myself. If I don't do something, he and his wife will continue to do what they do.

Last edited by aidezmoi; 07-14-2011 at 01:01 AM.
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Old 07-21-2011, 01:42 PM   #6 (permalink)
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aidezmoi,

I understand your situation. It is unfortunate, but common.

There is no national law about child custody and child support. That is a state issue. In this case it is a Texas issue and Texas law applies.

You may have heard the old saying that "anyone who represents himself has a fool for a client." That is true, but when you are poor and cannot get an attorney, then you may not have another choice.

If you represent yourself, it is called "Pro se." It will take a HUGE amount of work. The court will give you no sympathy. You must learn the law and apply it to your case. You must quote the law (called statutes or code) and you must quote previous cases, which will support your case. Just asking for what you want will not work.

Your case seems to involve Parent Alienation Syndrome, which is the phenomenon of one parent turning the child against the other parent. So Google "Parent Alienation," and research it in Lexis-Nexis (see below).

First you need to know how to use a computer. If you do not know how to use a computer, then go the city library and take a free course. And you have to own a computer and printer.

Second, go to the library at a local university or college. (The city library will not have what you need for this part.) Ask the librarian to sign into their computers as a guest. Access the Lexis-Nexis database and research child custody law. Read the law and download it onto a thumb drive (flash drive or USB drive), so you can take it home to your computer. You are particularly interested in the "Annotated" revised code (law). Annotated revised code means that underneath each law will be a summary of previous cases that apply to that law. Read the summaries and "cite" (quote and reference) the cases that support what you want. When you cite statutes and cases, they are called "authorities." You absolutely must cite authorities, otherwise you will probably lose right away.

Third, you have to read the local court rules (and maybe the rules of appellate procedure), so you will know how to file a motion and how the court system works. Get some copies of motions already filed in court by real attorneys so that you will know what a motion looks like. Since you have been through custody hearings, you may already have copies of motions and be familiar with court proceedings, but you must read and learn the court rules in detail or you will lose by making ignorant mistakes.

Fourth, if you lose, the court might make you pay for the attorney fees incurred by your Ex in defending against your action. That can be thousands of dollars. But, if you don't have the money anyway, it may be hard for them to collect it. But if your ex is vindictive, he can make your life miserable with his collection efforts.

Fifth, if you get food stamps or any public assistance, you can request "indigent" status in the court, which means that you are too poor to pay court fees, which may save you the filing fees (or maybe not). But it would be worth it to apply for food stamps, and then apply for indigent status. The court clerk should have a standard form to apply for indigent status.

Sixth, you indicated that your kid(s) might be over sixteen and free to make their own choice under Texas law. That would make things even more difficult.

Seventh, never agree to anything your ex's attorney proposes (never, never, never), unless he is just giving in and giving you exactly what you want. Anything else that he proposes will just be an attorney trick to trip you up on some court rule that you do not know about. Typically, you should oppose any of their proposals, just because they offered it. Always ask for their proposal in writing, and then for time to research anything they propose, before you agree to it.

Eight, think very carefully before you start this project. It will chew up all your spare time, if you have any. Also, the court case may take two or more years and the kid(s) may be 18 by then, which will make your case moot. (Moot is also a legal term. but it means the same thing as you will find in any dictionary.) As soon as your case is moot, the court will throw it out. Maybe it is better to just try to maintain whatever contact you can with your alienated children and hope to re-establish better relationships when they are older and wiser.

Last edited by zeelawn; 07-21-2011 at 02:02 PM.
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Old 07-22-2011, 09:08 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Thank you for suggestions, they are the best anyone has ever volunteered. I am very angry about my children being placed in the care of such a twisted person. Yes, twisted...I just found out that they had oral surgery a couple of months ago, and I was never informed. He and his wife wanted to be the parents during recovery. My summer possession has not been respected, either. They've also tried to keep hidden the fact that they put their house up for sale...(no yard sign when I was expected, one of my kids didn't say anything either) why the mystery? There must be some way I can speed up the process.
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Old 09-02-2011, 03:31 AM   #8 (permalink)
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[COLOR="Blue"]You should be able to expedite the process since your legal rights to your summer time were violated by your ex. Educate yourself, fill out the forms needed, and file right away. Try finding a lawyer that will give you a free consult, since a lot will. You have a good chance here seeing all the violations and parental alienation that has occured by your kids dad and stepmom.
Good luck, post your progress!
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