I x-posted this in single parenting, but it's a quiet board and I really need advice asap!
My ex informed me last night that he will be moving to the Dominican. We are in Canada. This is far away. =P He won't be taking the kids. He wants to try and start a better life there, he says. Currently, our custody arrangement is joint, though I have primary physical and he takes them maybe 4 or 5 days a month, max, when it's convenient for him and he's not lying about fake funerals or other crazy reasons to avoid taking them for a weekend.
He wants to take them for a month each summer (on my dime, he expects me to pay half the plane ticket) which I'm totally NOT comfortable with. First, that's a long time. I get upset at 8pm on a Friday after he's only had them a couple of hours. A month??? Serious?? Plus I've heard some not-so-good things about the country from family who have vacationed there, and friends who have family living there.
He does not pay child support, but currently pays half the daycare bill which works out to about $350/month.
He says that once he's gone, he will pay child support (but no daycare) at a rate of $250/month, for two kids. He is "self employed" and has always hidden his income with his father's help (his employer), so it's near impossible to enforce any sort of payments based on the regular child support chart, as I have nothing to go by. Plus, there is nothing to garnish as he has always been paid in wads of cash.
Child support aside (I'll be honestly shocked if I receive a penny) what else do I need to arrange before he leaves? I have about a month. I know I need to:
1) Get their passports now, as he needs to sign for that. I'd like to be able to take them on vacations in the future
2) Get a notarized letter for unlimited travel with the kids (is this possible?) as he won't be here to sign them on an as-needed basis
3) Change the custody arrangement wording so that I have full authorization for decision making, as he won't be around and will be likely unreachable most of the time, as he is now. Any thoughts on how to word this? Can I simply amend our agreement and have us both sign it? I don't know if we have time, at this point, to take anything to court.
Am I missing anything else? Anyone have experience with international custody, or know of any good resources online or otherwise? I've been googling all day! Can't really find much aside from international kidnapping advice, heh.