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My ex-wife moved out of ny state and went to California without me knowing. Can I get custody?

Catskill, NY |

My ex-wife moved out of state with my daughter. I have seen her in 2 months. We have been to court twice. the judge told her not to enroll my daughter in school in California, but she did so anyways. I have missed several visitations and my Christmas vacation with her. the ex-wife told me at first that she was on vacation, but then after 2 missed visits, stated that she was not coming back and refused to tell me where she was. My daughter told me that city and state they were in. I did some research and found an address as well. she will only allow me to talk to my daughter via Skype once a week for 15 minutes, maybe. Can I get custody of my daughter based on her actions?

Attorney Answers 5

Posted

You need to retain counsel promptly and file a petition for custody. If you wife has been gone for less than six months, only a NY state court can issue a custody order. If the judge told her not to enroll your daughter in school in CA, but she did anyways, you need to ask for an immediate temporary order giving sole custody to you and ordering your daughter back to NY state.

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Asker

Posted

she missed 2 court dates. one was because she didn't have proper notice (it went to her prior address) and the second she attended via phone call. The judge told her if she doesn't come back to ny, she at least needs to have a lawyer present. I talked to someone who said that I shouldn't file the custody paperwork until after court on Monday to find out if she comes to ny or not.

Jean M. Mahserjian

Jean M. Mahserjian

Posted

Why are you in court? Someone filed something. If you have a court appearance on Monday, you should be requesting temporary custody.

Asker

Posted

I filed two enforcement/violation petitions. I filed them based on my missed visitations. it was before I knew she moved out of state.

Jean M. Mahserjian

Jean M. Mahserjian

Posted

I think you need to file a modification petition, based on her move, and ask for custody.

Posted

What is your current custody arrangement? Also, what do your separation agreement say? It will probably not be enough to take full custody from your ex, however, you want to bring an action in New York to preserve jurisdiction (although you should already have it based on the current divorce order)

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Asker

Posted

she has sole custody. I have every other weekend visitation, every summer, spring, winter, and half of Christmas vacation. she is also not supposed to move out of the jurisdiction without the permission of me or with a new court order modifying visitation.

Posted

Yes, but you have to petition for it.

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Posted

Petition for custody ASAP. There are strict time limitations on these matters and you want to ensure that a NY court can hear your case.

The above answer is intended for informational purposes and is not legal advice. It does not constitute the creation of an attorney-client relationship.

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Posted

As counsel above has pointed out, there are time limitations so you should speak with an attorney or file your petition immediately.

The information transmitted shall not constitute as formal legal advice, nor shall it create an attorney/client relationship. If you seek formal legal advice you are recommended to speak with an attorney via a more formal setting such as over the phone or in person.

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