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Ginger L. Murray
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Ginger Murray’s Answers

45 total


  • What does a judge consider an unfit parent? What are the chances of me gaining sole placement and custody?

    Child's father has a little bit of a criminal history..when he was 18 (now 29) he has a charge of sex with a child over the age of 17, a charge of possesion of thc and drug paraphernalia, and misdemeanor bail jumping. He lives in an unfinished (be...

    Ginger’s Answer

    There are two different thresholds for trying to change an order regarding placement and custody. IF you are trying to change an initial order on placement and custody within 2 years of it being entered, you must demonstrate to the court that the child is in imminent danger. If the most recent order is not the initial order for custody and placement or has been in place for more than 2 years, then you must demonstrate that there has been a substantial change in circumstances since the last order. Therefore the criminal behavior prior to the current order is not likely very helpful. However, if the living arrangements, stability in the home, time with half-siblings, or other circumstances have changed since the last order, then you can ask for a change. Generally the court does not grant sole legal custody unless a parent has issues with being abusive, suffers from an addiction/untreated mental health condition, or other condition that interferes with the parents ability cooperate on decisions for the child. There are several factors the court must consider before making a change to placement. At the end of the day the court's priority is to issue orders that are in the child's best interest.

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  • My Ex partner want 20% percent of my paycheck for Child support

    He wants More Than I Can Give 300 A Week I Can Do 200 And Still Pay My Bills My Son Medical Needs Are Covered By Medicare And He Receives A Check Of 392 A Month And My Ex Has Had A Refund Each Year Of 7000.00 Plus Stipend Checks. My Son Is 8yrs Ol...

    Ginger’s Answer

    I agree with David's answer. That said, it does appear there are a few other issues to be addressed. You state that your son gets a monthly check. If this is due to your son getting a derivative benefit from a parent's benefit, that has some implications as well and involves a complicated calculation in addition to those listed in David's answers. Also, if you have shared placement (each parent has greater than 25% of overnight placement) then there is also a calculation for assessing variable costs for the child. In addition, different court officials will come to different conclusions about the amount each parent should contribute for child care. One other consideration for your situations is whether or not your ex is having income imputed if he has the capability to earn more than he is reporting and/or whether or not the expenses he is writing off for taxes are being added back in for purposes of calculating his income available for child support. Finally it appears there may be significant travel costs for you, which can be a basis to deviate from the normal child support calculations if you are incurring those costs in order to spend time with your child.

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  • Paternity test

    A lady I was seeing, but not exclusively, ended up pregnant. She claimed the child was mine. She moved in with me. A month before the baby was born, she took off to Ohio to live with her parents. She has had the baby and won't let me see her or te...

    Ginger’s Answer

    Once the child has lived in another state for 6 months, you will have a hard time starting an action in WI. Although she may file it here, as an action for paternity can be filed "where the father is found". Right now, absent a filing anywhere, it is a race to the courthouse. Since the child was presumably conceived here, you live here, and until recently she lived here, I think there is a strong argument for Wisconsin to take the case.

    I agree with David's answers regarding how to try to locate the mother. It would also help if you knew information about her parents.Social media is a great resource for locating people as well.

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  • I am wondering what needs to be done and if i need to get an attorney if i want to move out of state with my children?

    I am looking to move out of state with my kids within the next year for better opportunities for me professionally and to give my kids a better future. I do not have a court ordered visitation schedule or child support order currently, as we have...

    Ginger’s Answer

    If you truly have no prior order, then there will be no need to file a removal (see more info. on removals below). If there isn't an initial order on placement, then you file a motion seeking the initial order for placement. For an initial order there is a presumption for joint legal custody and on order maximizing quality placement time with both parents. Living far apart from the other parent is usually very difficult for the children and the court will likely challenge you to reconsider your position. You will need to make your best argument to convince the court that the move is in the children's best interests.

    IF you and their father cannot agree, the court will refer you to mediation, the court may require a custody study, and if you still don't agree the court will appoint a lawyer to represent the best interests of the children (this lawyer is called a guardian ad litem or GAL). The court will issue a decision on what the court deems to be in the best interests of the children.

    This fact situation fails to mention whether the father is an ex-husband or a father outside of marriage (paternity). If he is an ex-husband, there must already be an initial order. If this is a paternity there may already be an order. There are some court officials that draw a distinction as to the application of the statutes on removal (the process to follow for taking a child out of the state for more than 90 days) depending whether or not the is post divorce or a paternity case.

    If you are receiving any form of support, then there probably is an initial order. In that case, you will need to file for removal. There is a presumption that the current placement (stemming from the initial order) is what is in the children's best interest. A removal case is very complicated and the procedures or very technical. I strongly encourage the involvement of counsel.

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  • My daughter is 9. Can she tell her dad she does not want to go with him?

    Does my daughter have any say as to if she has to go for visitation or not. There is an order for every other weekend. He has no current residence. He gets a motel room when he comes. He also is very negative during his times of placement. Also he...

    Ginger’s Answer

    • Selected as best answer

    You are required to follow the court order. Failure to do so could subject you to a motion for contempt.

    If you think it is in your child's best interest to have a different order (requiring supervised visits or visits without overnight placement) then you should file a motion. If an action is pending and both parents do not agree on what placement is in the best interest for your daughter, the court will appoint a guardian ad litem ("GAL"), an attorney appointed by the court to represent your daughter's best interests. The GAL has an obligation to investigate the situation and make recommendations based on what the GAL thinks is in your daughter's best interest. One of the statutory factors the GAL and court must consider is your daughter's wishes. Finally, a counselor may be able to help your daughter sort through her feelings and that counselor can then share his/her professional opinion with the GAL.

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  • The mother of my children has warrants. She wrote a letter giving me custody. I went to court prior to letter. She didn't show

    Up due to warrants. Commissioner gave her another 4 months to get herself together and wouldn't give me custody or listen to my evidence. What should i do?

    Ginger’s Answer

    Any decision by a Court Commissioner is subject to a De Novo review. That means that you can ask the Judge to review the case "of new", or as if the decision from the Commissioner did not exist. This appeal is time sensitive. Your clerk of courts should be able to tell you the timelines for filing a De Novo appeal of the Commissioners decision. Another option is getting the mother to sign a stipulation and order that you can then present to the court so you have an order instead of an unenforceable order.

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  • In need of a good family lawyer.

    My daughters father and his wife got primary placement of my daughter because I couldn't appear to a paternity hearing. This was in 2004 my daughter suffered long neglect, verbal, mental and sadly physical abuse over the years of being in her fath...

    Ginger’s Answer

    Wow, it sounds like your daughter has been through a lot. The fact that the court transferred placement to you is a good sign for you. It appears that since there was a call to CPS there may also be a CHIPS (Children In need of Protection or Services) case in the near future. If so, the CHIPS case will control the placement of your daughter. The court may appoint an attorney for you in the CHIPS case. Whether a family law case or CHIPS case, there will be a guardian ad litem appointed by the court to represent your daughter's best interests. You should also get a lawyer that knows both family and CHIPs law.

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  • I gave my mom temporary custody of my daughter but she went behind my back and filed for gaudianship what can I do?

    I live in Milwaukee can I fight from Milwaukee I can't afford to travel back and forth

    Ginger’s Answer

    A parent certainly has the right to contest the guardianship. You should have been served with the pleadings and you are an interested person with the right to present your case. I strongly recommend a lawyer well-versed in guardianship. Your mother has a very high burden of proof to be successful in this case.

    You ask if you can fight this case from Milwaukee but you do not state where the case was filed. You will need to participate in the County where the case was filed. There may be a basis for objecting to that County moving forward in the case. If there is such a challenge you will want a lawyer to look at that claim before you show up or file a pleading in that County. In other words, do not delay in getting an attorney. You can also know that there will be an attorney appointed to represent your child's best interest. That lawyer has a responsibility to contact you and investigate what result is in the child's best interest.

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  • Can a mother on state aid drop child support?

    Both parents want to drop child support but mother is on state aid for insurance.

    Ginger’s Answer

    The simply answer is, no. The insurance for your child is currently being funded by the taxpayers of WI. It is the responsibility of the child support agency to seek support from the father or have the father get insurance for the child, if available through an employer at a reasonable costs, to save the taxpayers from paying for the insurance. IF either parent can insure the child, then the child support agency won''t have an issue as mom won't be getting support. Until then, child support has a claim in the case.

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  • What can I do to have more rights in visitation with my daughter.

    I haven't been around a lot in the last year and 9 months of my daughters life. But Know the mom has moved about 30 minutes away so she is a lot closer making easier for me to pick her up. First she said oh good you guys can have her every other w...

    Ginger’s Answer

    In order to make a change to the placement order, you will need to file a motion to modify placement. The court can consider your request if you prove that there has been a substantial change in circumstances since the last order. In order to be awarded more placement you will need to convince the court that it is in the best interest of the your daughter to make changes to the placement order.

    If you have an order that allows for placement and you are not getting that placement you can file a petition to enforce placement.

    In either case, I expect that you will need to answer to your absence in your daughter's life for the past year and nine months. The idea to go to counseling with your child sounds like a good idea. Your daughter may be very confused about your long absence from her life. A counselor should provide a safe and welcome environment for your daughter to discuss her concerns or questions with you and the counselor should be able to help guide an effective discussion.

    Good luck!

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