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Ginger L. Murray
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Ginger Murray’s Answers

41 total


  • 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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  • Trying to get joint custody of my kids and 50/50 placement. Divorce 3 years ago

    At the time of the divorce I had no job and lived with my parents. I now have a steady job and live with my fiance in the same district the kids go to school. Trying to get 50/50 placement and joint custody. I have the paperwork I need. Is it poss...

    Ginger’s Answer

    Good for you for making positive changes in your life. The law in WI allows for a motion for modification of placement 2 years after the initial placement order provided there has been a substantial change of circumstances. It certainly seems that your current situation rises to the level of a substantial change of circumstances. Again, that allows you to make the request for the modification. I

    n order to get a change in placement, you will need to convince the court that a change in placement is in the best interest of your children. It would certainly be helpful to have an attorney as issues of custody and placement can be complicated. Also know that if the children's mother objects to your request the court is required to appoint a guardian ad litem (an attorney appointed to investigate the case and make recommendations based on that attorney's opinion of what is in the best interest of your children). You should also be provided an opportunity to mediate the case before the GAL is appointed. If you are able to reach an agreement at mediation, then you can avoid the cost of the GAL and a contested hearing. It will be up to you to decide if the expertise of a family law attorney is needed, but I certainly recommend it.

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  • If my wife leaves with my children and won't bring them back can I go get them from her?

    My wife went to stay at my sisters house in north carolina. She was supposed to come home next week. Instead she said she's going to keep the children and is filing for custody over them. I haven't gotten served any papers. Am I in my legal right ...

    Ginger’s Answer

    One of the most difficult times for securing time with the children is before the family case is filed. Neither parent has greater rights than the other, which makes things VERY difficult. She has no rights greater than your to keep the kids there, but you have no rights greater than hers to bring them back with you. IF you go there and she refuses, then law enforcement can be called, but they are not likely to make a decision as they enforce the law, not make the law (orders).

    You need an agreement with her (preferably in writing) or a court order. Based on the information in your explanation it appears that your family lives in WI and she is visiting in NC. In that case, absent abuse or other extraordinary facts, any case will need to be filed in WI. You certainly have the right to file in WI. I wouldn't make the trip to get the kids without an agreement from her (in writing) or a court order.

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  • Can NC Parent visit children at daycare/school on my placement time (routinely, not just now and again)?

    NC parent has never asked for or requested the ability to watch the children. In the past he has been extremely unreliable (cancelling last minute, "forgetting" to pick up the children, etc.). Never shown interest in watching children after schoo...

    Ginger’s Answer

    The court has the responsibility to enter and enforce orders that are in the children's best interest. As I was reading your question I was initially thinking that the court would likely not be too concerned about a parent taking the time to visit the children at school. However, the information that indicates that the visits appear to be upset the children as they are not able to play with their friends at recess, and are possibly interfering with getting their work done sounds like facts that could convince a court to enter an order limiting the visits.

    Because the visits are occurring on your placement days I think you have legal basis to file a pleading to make the request. As is always the case in an action affecting the family regarding custody and/or placement, if you and dad don't agree, you will be ordered to go to mediation and if that doesn't help you get an acceptable agreement, the court will appoint a guardian ad litem (GAL) to represent the children's best interest. The guardian ad litem is required to ascertain the children's wishes on the issue. Also, the teacher's opinions will likely influence the GAL. From your report, the school does not appear to favor the visits. That should be helpful.

    Before you file a motion, you may want to consider making your "case" to the children's father and see if he will agree to stop visiting at school on your placement day. I encourage my clients to have a paper trail (letter, email, text messages, etc.) to demonstrate all attempts to resolve an issue outside the court system.

    Good Luck!

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  • I am being sued for the second mortgage on my ex and my old house, which he agreed to pay per our divorce agreement. Help?

    When we got our divorce, he wanted the house and agreed to refinance the house in his name only. He did not, the house forclosed and sold and he hasn't made a payment on the 2nd mortgage in 5 years. The bank has hired a lawyer and is now coming ...

    Ginger’s Answer

    You are in a very vulnerable situation as you surrendered any interest you had in the home when you signed the quit claim deed and yet according to your explanation, your name remains on the debt. As you indicate, his failure to follow a court order is contempt of that court order. I have been involved in cases in which the lender allows additional time while the "innocent spouse" tries to get enforcement from the family court. You can get a motion for contempt heard, in most cases, in relatively short order. As in any case in which funds are being sought for payment on a debt, the ability to collect from your ex will be very important. However, the court has the ability to issue sanctions, including incarceration, and that is usually pretty decent motivation to get folks to pay debts. If he isn't paying any debts or child support, why not seek the sanctions. Also, a successful motion for contempt also usually includes an order for the payment of the attorney fees and costs incurred as a part of that motion.

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