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Question
Posted by: WILSON | 2012/01/12

child custody

15 years ago i was in a relationship with my exgirlfriend. she cheated on me and fell pregnant. She tald me that the child belonged to the other guy so we ended our relationship. a few moths after giving birth she brought the child to me occationally explaining that she made a mistake the child belonged to me. That let to a fight with the other guy and eventualy our parents met and because of the complex of the situation i need to do a partenity test in order to claim the child. The results confirmed that its my boy. Our parents met again and the ladys parents demanded i pay R2000 for custody of the child. After paying that R2000 they demanded another R1000 which I have not payed. Its 7 years since I have my son is living with me. He went to visit his mother in December and when he came back he explained to me that he wants to go back and live with his mother. His reasons are lies that he head from his mother about me not being the best parent to look after him. His grand father also promised him a room should he come to live with them. My ex is and alchoholic and does not work, she relys on the grant money and her father also does not work. I am concerned about the future of my child and the bad influence he gets for his mother and her family to brain wash him into suffering from identity problem and stress. How do i protect my son from his mother and her family without loosing his trust?

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageCyberShrink

I believe it is almost always best to have custody and maintenance decisions made by the Maintenance Court, considering evidence on all sides, and not based purely on what one parent chooses to demand, but decided on the basis of what would be best for the child.
If the boy has been living with you for 7 years without a problem, any sensible court would wonder why he might change his mind after a short visit to his mother. If she is indeeed alcoholic ( any evidence you can gather on such matters would be useful ) and if she and her father are unemployed, that should all be considered relevant.
You need good legal advice, and maybe an assessment of the child by a good local psychologist or a social worker, who can look into all the relevant factors and report to the court.

The information provided does not constitute a diagnosis of your condition. You should consult a medical practitioner or other appropriate health care professional for a physical exmanication, diagnosis and formal advice. Health24 and the expert accept no responsibility or liability for any damage or personal harm you may suffer resulting from making use of this content.

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Our users say:
Posted by: ... | 2012/01/17

These people dont work so if the boy lives with them, you will have to deposit th money into their accounts, of which some if not all will be used for their needs.....simple! Trust me, been there

Reply to ...
Posted by: mikky | 2012/01/12

And no 7 year old child is able to make a informed decision about what is best for himself.

My step kids tell us they want to live with us and then tell their mom that they want to live with her.

They live with their mom and when they are old enough to understand the consequences of their choices and make informed decisions, they can. At the moment, the living arrangements are what was decided in the divorce and not by the childs wants which could change everyday depending on where things were easiest for them.

Go to the family advocate and get custody arrangements formalised.

Reply to mikky
Posted by: Liza | 2012/01/12

You can sort this out yourself. Go to your nearest family court and have a chat with the legal staff and social workers there.

The family demanding money from you to keep custody is blackmail and is ILLEGAL. Do you have proof of payment for the R2000 you paid? This will be important evidence and no judge in his right mind is going to remove your son from your custody when the mother is shown to only care about money. If they are still demanding more money, ensure that it''s on paper so that they can''t later claim the money was for something else. The court will also not give custody to an unemployed mother when the employed father has been the primary caregiver for most of the childs'' life. Any threats that they make are empty. They can try, but it will be VERY expensive for them with absolutely no guarantee of success.

If the mother is living with her parents, and her parents earn a reasonable amount, you can even SUE the grandparents to help with the childs'' costs. So next time she threatens to sue for custody, tell her that your counter claim will involve you suing for maintenance.

Good Luck
Liza

Reply to Liza
Posted by: Obvious | 2012/01/12

You cannot sort this out yourself.
You need a lawyer, he will recomend a private social worker to assist. Then you can decide on how to proceed. lt will cost but will be money well spent

Reply to Obvious
Posted by: cybershrink | 2012/01/12

I believe it is almost always best to have custody and maintenance decisions made by the Maintenance Court, considering evidence on all sides, and not based purely on what one parent chooses to demand, but decided on the basis of what would be best for the child.
If the boy has been living with you for 7 years without a problem, any sensible court would wonder why he might change his mind after a short visit to his mother. If she is indeeed alcoholic ( any evidence you can gather on such matters would be useful ) and if she and her father are unemployed, that should all be considered relevant.
You need good legal advice, and maybe an assessment of the child by a good local psychologist or a social worker, who can look into all the relevant factors and report to the court.

Reply to cybershrink

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