Patrice McCausland Johnston’s Answers

Patrice McCausland Johnston

Seattle Family Law Attorney.

Contributor Level 4
  1. In WA state does the possible biological father have to pay child support if he's not listed on the birth certificate?

    Answered over 2 years ago.

    1. Patrice McCausland Johnston
    2. Thuong-Tri Nguyen
    2 lawyer answers

    He should retain a family law attorney to help him respond to the court proceedings. It appears that either the state is seeking to establish paternity and set child support, or the mother has filed to do so. The court can require the possible father to submit to genetic testing, and if he is the father, the court will order him to pay support. The court can also enter a parenting plan if he wants residential time with the children.

    3 lawyers agreed with this answer

  2. Can a step-parent sign any school or medical related forms or request such items from a school or doctor?

    Answered over 3 years ago.

    1. Dave Hawkins
    2. Patrice McCausland Johnston
    3. Bruce Clement
    3 lawyer answers

    Have you addressed this with dad? He is the person who should intervene and ask her not to overstep into these areas. If he won't, then you can certainly contact the school and the doctor and clarify that only you and dad are authorized to make decisions for the children. A lot depends on what kinds of things stepmom is doing. If she's just taking the kids to the dentist during dad's time, that's OK; if she's making decisions about whether the kids get immunizations, whether or not they...

    2 lawyers agreed with this answer

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  3. What are the chances that a non custodial parent can have the kids in his school district if he lives 45 min away from kids?

    Answered over 2 years ago.

    1. Patrice McCausland Johnston
    2. Melissa Marie Denton
    3. Stephen Ross Cohen
    3 lawyer answers

    In Washington, in order to modify a parenting plan, a party must show a substantial change of circumstances of the non-requesting party (you) or the children. Courts do not like to change parenting plans because they believe that doing so is disruptive to children, so the bar for requesting a change is high. Asking to change the plan simply because it would more convenient for him, or he thinks the schools near his home are better, is not sufficient. Unless there are other factors that you...

    1 lawyer agreed with this answer

  4. My ex threaten to call the cops in front our child, my boyfriend do I have any rights to protect myself against his open threats

    Answered over 2 years ago.

    1. Patrice McCausland Johnston
    2. Bruce Clement
    2 lawyer answers

    Although you are right that this type of behavior reflects poor judgment, it's not likely that the court would completely terminate your ex's time with the child because of it. As a practical matter, the best way to handle this in the short run might be to bring a neutral third party to the exchanges (not a boyfriend, but a sibling, parent, etc.) so you have a witness to the events, and someone who can remove the child from the conflict if necessary. If you already have a parenting plan,...

    1 lawyer agreed with this answer

  5. My ex is withholding our child's passport from me. Do I need to take him to court to get it back?

    Answered over 3 years ago.

    1. Frances Turean
    2. Patrice McCausland Johnston
    3. Bruce Clement
    3 lawyer answers

    Following up on the other answer, if you are unable to reach a resolution in the dispute resolution process, you can file a motion on the family law motions calendar in King County and ask the court to order your ex to turn the passport over to you. But the court will expect you to have tried dispute resolution first.