My children are 12 & 9. Mom has primary custody(order states for school enrollment, divorce is not final, since 2011 we've been to court several times because coparenting is difficult and I've always tried to get more time with my kids, mom doesn't allow ANY extra time outside court) I have always had our children 40-50% since separation. I am a month away from custody trial. I requested primary custody due to mom moving to Montana. We are currently splitting summer break(she requested an exparte hearing cz she doesnt want them to start school, she wants to keep them in MT until trial, but its after school starts) She discourages my parenting and has been pressuring our kids to decide "mom or dad's house". They tell me they dont want to choose, but she makes them feel guilty. They are too young to be dealing with this kind of pressure and anxiety of having to tell the judge the "good things and bad things of mom and dads house"-my 12 year old sons words. She discusses court issues with them, and her lawyer told the judge the children "are not intimidated and would be willing to tell the court their preference". I do not want to put my kids through this, what can I do?
You won't like this answer, but if you drop your attempts to protest mom's wishes... no more pain for these children.
Time may be your friend more than you think.
All of Ms. Straus’ responses are offered as useful information, based solely upon the facts stated in the question, and are not to be relied upon as alegal opinion. They may not be what you wished to hear, They do not create an attorney-client relationship. Ms. Straus has been licensed to practice law in California for 34 years. Ms. Straus regrets that she does not provide follow up free advice via email. She also regrets that blunt responses may be taken as "rude" by those who wished a different opinion. Good luck.
You are in Riverside, I am wondering if the case is in Riverside.
Under Elkins they are too young to testify. Typically the court orders a 730 evaluation to determine the best interest in a move-away. You did not state this information, so I am thinking that it was not ordered.
For a protracted case such as you describe, with complex alienation issues and a move-away, I am stunned that you do not have an attorney. Especially since she has one.
There isn't much that you can do unless you hire an experienced attorney in your area to fight the move-away. If you win then you will have custody and mom is free to move.
You really need an experienced attorney for your case and to take this to trial.
Dawn M. Saenz is licensed to practice law in the State of California and the California Supreme Court, and cannot give advice about the laws of other jurisdictions. All comments on this site are intended for informational purposes only, and are not intended to constitute legal advice, create an attorney-client relationship, or solicit business. No posts or comments on this site are in any way confidential. Each case is unique. Information not contained in these posts may create significant exceptions to the advice provided in any response. You are advised to have counsel at all stages of any legal proceeding, and to speak with your own lawyer in private to get advice about your specific situation.
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