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Custody Question

post #1 of 3
Thread Starter 

Here's the back round on our story:


DH and I had custody of his daughter for 3 years. Bio mom rarely visited or called (skipped b-days and such) The only time she took her visitation was to send dd to her parents (dd's grandparents) on the other side of the country. Sometimes bio-mom stayed and visited, but most times she dropped dd off and went back to her own thing.


Well, two years ago, bio mom called and asked to take dd for Christmas. We made the arrangements, and to put it plain and simple, bio mom never brought dd back. She called dd's school, told them she was enrolling her in school in her state. and voila! Started one nasty child custody battle. (We found out our child custody agreement that was written by military JAG officers was simply a gentleman's agreement, not upheld in court)


So, to make a long story short DH and I knew that bio mom's parents (dd's grandparents) were the ones behind this whole thing. We know bio mom wants nothing to do with dd. So, we decided to stop fighting and bio mom was given primary custody with us having visitation (this was ruled this past April...so about 8 months) We didn't have a lawyer because we couldn't afford any more legal fees (we had all ready spent around thirty thousand!)


We decided that we had enough proof to show the character of bio-mom, so we decided our best approach would be to back off and see what happens. (We suspected bio-mom would send dd to live with grandparents)



Well, what do you know. We now have the physical proof that dd is enrolled in school in the state of her grandparents and lives with them. Bio mom is on the east coast, her parents on the west coast. Obviously, bio-mom is not raising dd.


Our question is this: If we file, we should have a good chance at getting custody back, correct? DD is 8 (all most 9) and she wants nothing more than to be back with us. She repeatedly told this to the guardian and the judge on several accounts. We have never been found to have anything wrong with us.


Oh, and one more thing is I know based on my siggy you can tell we are a military family, well it really cant be held against us because bio-mom is also in the military. So it's not an issue of instability with the moving and stuff.


What do you think? we are a little "damaged" still by this whole thing. It was a nasty, nasty court battle that turned uglier every chance you think it wouldn't. We are really not sure if we want to reopen all of this and fight some more, but our hearts are really with our child. Unfortunately, we can not afford another 30 thousand dollar court battle. So we just want to make sure we have something to stand on in the fact that bio-mom doesn't even have the child and sent her to her parents a mere 3 months after being awarded custody.




post #2 of 3

So, when your dh's ex took his dd and never returned him what did you do?  Did you fight, or did you roll over and let her have custody?  If you didn't fight, you made yourselves look VERY bad.  With or without a lawyer, you should have gone to court and fought.


That said, grandma and grandpa have ZERO right to raise her.  Your DH would be within his rights to take her and not return her to the grandparents.  If mom showed up however, you would be required to hand her over per the custody agreement. 


However, you need to consult a lawyer, since this is much more complicated than that.  It may cost $30,000.  It may not.  You and your dh have to decide if its worth it to fight for custody.   But you would likely win, b/c the grandparents have no right to raise the child.  They may be awarded grandparent rights if they fight for that, but they would not be awarded custody.

post #3 of 3
Thread Starter 

Sorry for the confusion... no, we definitely fought right after she took her. We called law enforcement and bio-mom was called out for lying under oath several times (and running and fleeing to different places with the child)  Unfortunately, for us, we ran out of money. (Grandparents are millionares) and they won because we had no representation at our last hearing. The judge tried and tried to help us (as he was in our favor) but their lawyer knew what to say/do at all times. It was an all most two year drag out custody battle involving a lot of gunk. However, we never lied under oath, we stayed true to who we are, and hopefully, we can file out of our taxes. We are trying to wait because the rumor is that bio-mom is getting out of the military in March. So we are going to wait until March to see if she re-enlists or not because we don't have the money to file right now. Right now, bio-mom has sole custody and we have visitation. We figured the grandparents didn't have much to stand on unless bio-mom was deploying soon (which, we checked and she isn't) 





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