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#1 of 40 Old 03-21-2012, 03:11 PM - Thread Starter
 
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my husband has a child with his exgirlfriend, he just got a letter in the mail that his son was placed in a foster home, we are considering fighting for custody of him, he was placed in foster care due to violent and abusive behavior from his mothers boyfriend, but she isn't that great of a person to begin with so i doubt all the blame is on him. and no i am not saying this out of spite towards her, for any reason, but does anyone have expierience with this? i know it's going to be a challege fighting a mother because i know the courts dont normally take the child away from thier mother but here's a quick rundown of her living situation compared to my husband and i's.

 

 

 

Hers:

lives with parents

doesn't clean, nobody does

they let their dogs go potty inside wherever they want to and dont clean it up for long periods of time

im not sure about sleeping conditions last time she said anything about it she said that there was not enough room for him to have his own bed so he was sleeping with her and her 9 year old son

a year ago she had my stepson in the emergency room to have stiches put in his face where he somehow not sure of the circumstances, but he had stiches in both sides of his cheeks along his mouth it didnt look to me like an accident at all but i am not putting out accusations

she smokes inside

she goes out every weekend

 

Ours:

all three of my children have thier own bed

my girls share a room while my son is still in my bedroom in his crib, he is only 5 months old

but he does have his own bedroom when i am ready to move him to it

i am a stay at home mom so i cook, clean, walk my dog, and even learned the trade of "handyman" lol

my children are very well taken care of and my house is clean a good nine times a day if not more, my children are almost 3 1 1/2 and 5 months so it is very hectic cleaning up toys after them lol

i smoke outside and away from my kids (smoking is bad i know)

we dont drink alcohol

 

 

 

does any of this sound like we have a chance at all

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#2 of 40 Old 03-21-2012, 08:33 PM
 
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Um...yeah he has a chance!

 

What SHOULD happen, is they will come out and check out the home, do a background check etc. they may do something like require the father to have a drug test or something, i dont know. But it should all be fairly simple.

 

Then, the child will be placed with his father. Its likely the father might have to bring the child to the agency (or however they do it where you live, some places the worker transports) to have visits with the mother, if thats what the judge orders. If the child is happy and healthy with the father then they may very well leave him there.

 

But absolutely if he isnt a criminal and is safe, they will VERY likely turn the child over to him.

 

Some of that stuff though wont even factor in (like who smokes and where and whether you drink alcohol...although if there are drug issues, a part of that might be a requirement she not drink as well...)...basically they are looking for minimum level of safety.


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#3 of 40 Old 03-22-2012, 04:21 AM
 
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Yes, he has a chance. But in my state, it would not be so cut-and-dried as in QueenJane's state. 

 

Your husband need to get on the radar of his son's social worker, STAT. They are overworked and underpaid people, and now that your stepson is has been placed in a licensed foster home, the easiest thing to do from the perspective of the organization is to leave him there. Your husband, in a nice, pleasant, civil way, needs to make that NOT the easiest thing. He should have some kind of contact (phone message, email, etc.) on a daily basis from now until his son is handed over to him. Your household may need to obtain a foster license. 

 

Your husband needs to attend every court hearing, with a lawyer in tow if you can afford it. All it would take is one judge to notice him and say "hey, why isn't this kid with his dad?" and suddenly the move becomes a priority for the worker. You husband needs to find out when supervised visitation is scheduled and attend that. 

 

Buy a bed and dresser (or clear out half a dresser) for your stepson now. Make sure you have newer, working smoke detectors. If he's under four, check your babyproofing. Make sure that your kids and animals have their shots up-to-date. Assume that somebody will be coming out from social services, possibly with very little notice, to inspect your house and say "yes" or "no" to the placement based on what they see that day.

 

Now that I've freaked you out - perhaps your state will be easier to deal with than my state. But it certainly does not hurt to be proactive and prepared. And it DEFINITELY doesn't hurt to talk to a lawyer to is an expert in your local family courts. 

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#4 of 40 Old 03-22-2012, 08:52 AM
 
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Smithie i might agree with you if this was a RELATIVE we are talking about...but this is the biological father. I dont think i've ever heard of a situation where the biological father was required to be a licensed foster parent in order to have his OWN child placed in the home....have you?

 

Where i live, if this was the aunt or cousin or something....i think the rules have changed and now they ARE required to be licensed and follow all the same rules as regular foster parents.

 

But this is the parent. They have rights that relatives do not have.


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#5 of 40 Old 03-23-2012, 09:43 AM
 
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It sounds like you would have a chance of getting custody but what has the father's relationship been with the son up until now?  Do they visit, does he pay child support, etc.?  Why wasn't father called prior to son being put into foster care?  That doesn't seem right.  Has he relinquished parental rights in some way?  Agree he definitely needs to call the social worker asap.  Best of luck whatever you decide.

 

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#6 of 40 Old 03-23-2012, 06:07 PM
 
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Maybe another difference between states, but we have a sweet little one right now (and her brother) with different fathers.  Original case plan was for them both to go to her brother's grandparents - NV (or at least our county) moves kids very quickly to relatives if possible... our last placement was 10 days then moved to an aunt in OR, we had twin girls that never showed up because an uncle in Maryland flew in.
Anyway, our current little girl may be split from her brother because the father she has never met has resurfaced (after 5 years) and may want to take her.

OP:  NOT implying that you and your husband are absentee like this, or that you shouldn't have your little one with you!  Just an example in your favor from NV. 

It depends, too on how proactive your state is in applying new federal rules to get kids with family ASAP.  It does seem strange that you would get notice in the mail, rather than a phone call - in NV that would have been a huge miss and judges would gone after the caseworker a bit unless there were extenuating circumstances to not place the child with his/her father right away.

I hope this goes smoothly for you!!!!!!!!
 

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It sounds like you would have a chance of getting custody but what has the father's relationship been with the son up until now?  Do they visit, does he pay child support, etc.?  Why wasn't father called prior to son being put into foster care?  That doesn't seem right.  Has he relinquished parental rights in some way?  Agree he definitely needs to call the social worker asap.  Best of luck whatever you decide.

 

Latte



 

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#7 of 40 Old 03-24-2012, 03:12 PM
 
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Is he listed as the father on her birth certificate? The first thing they'll want to do is establish paternity, so if he's not on there, get him a DNA test. (I only thought of this b/c it doesn't make sense that they wouldn't have contacted him, although if the exgirlfriend chose to ignore the fact that she knows who the father is, that could explain it.)

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#8 of 40 Old 03-24-2012, 08:45 PM - Thread Starter
 
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It sounds like you would have a chance of getting custody but what has the father's relationship been with the son up until now?  Do they visit, does he pay child support, etc.?  Why wasn't father called prior to son being put into foster care?  That doesn't seem right.  Has he relinquished parental rights in some way?  Agree he definitely needs to call the social worker asap.  Best of luck whatever you decide.

 

Latte



the relationship between him and his son has been pretty much non existant until now, because she refused to let my husband see him for the last three years because i got pregnant with our 2 1/2 year old daughter. he pays child support out of every paycheck, and im not sure why he wasn't contacted before he was placed in foster care, that is something we have been trying to figure out too. no he has not relinquished his parental rights, in any way at all

 

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#9 of 40 Old 03-24-2012, 08:46 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Is he listed as the father on her birth certificate? The first thing they'll want to do is establish paternity, so if he's not on there, get him a DNA test. (I only thought of this b/c it doesn't make sense that they wouldn't have contacted him, although if the exgirlfriend chose to ignore the fact that she knows who the father is, that could explain it.)



he's not listed on his son's birth certificate, because she refused to let him be, but paternity was established at the local courthouse when he went for his very first hearing about his child support

 

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#10 of 40 Old 03-24-2012, 08:48 PM
 
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At the very least, they will ask him why he never took her to court to get visitation. They do try to establish what the relationship is/has been up until now.

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#11 of 40 Old 03-24-2012, 08:54 PM - Thread Starter
 
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it's all just messed up, but i can give a quick rundown of mine and my husbands relationship, when i met him she was like 7 months pregnant, they had not spoken or anything in 6 months, and i understood his situation as i have a child previously also and me and his father are not together anymore either. obviously lol. but she was pissed off because we started dating when she was pregnant, she wouldnt let him know of any doctors appointments, how they went nothing, all he got was an email when she was in labor, she didnt even call him to let him know when his son was born, we found out because she had someone call my husbands grandparents and let them know to let my husband know. effed up i know. she would bring his son to the last house we lived in quite regularly for my husband to see him but that didnt last very long since i got pregnant shortly after, i dont know what it was about us getting married and me being pregnant with our first child together that set her off, still trying to figure that one out myself. we have tried to contact her many many times to see when we could see him, or have him for a couple hours, a day, weekend, any time at all but she does not respond to our emails, or calls us back. im wondering something else too about all of this, the reason she had all 3 of her children taken away and placed in foster homes is due to the fact that the boyfriend she has now was very abusive physically towards all three children, i dont understand why my husband was not contacted at the very start of this investigation.... he has to go back to court on april 5th so im hoping between now and then we can have alot of home inspections done

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#12 of 40 Old 03-24-2012, 10:49 PM
 
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For a biological parent (and your husband has been legally established as such) the requirements are MUCH less stringent.  Drug and background check, basic requirements met in the house; but every state's OBLIGATION is to keep a child with a biological parent.

 

In most states the fact that he is paying child support pretty much cements his role as father despite the absence.  Sad but true.  In fact, in some states, lack of financial support for a year is grounds for terminating parental rights (of course, if brought to court I'm sure they're going to consider bond/visitation--and in fact, I am involved in a case that will test that matter in May  huh.gif ).

 

It sounds like you have the next court date.  Most courtrooms won't allow you to speak on your own behalf and want an attorney assigned.  I'm not sure how you find out if where you are is like that, but be prepared for the fact that this could hold things up a bit if you don't go in with an attorney and where you live IS like this.  I was present in a kangaroo court that at least stuck to this rule; but it was an open courtroom and so there were plenty of lawyers willing to step up to represent the people who showed up minus representation.  I'm not sure that's how I'd want to choose a lawyer.

 

But it sounds like you have good odds of getting the little one.


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#13 of 40 Old 03-25-2012, 03:28 AM
 
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But this is the parent. They have rights that relatives do not have.

 

 

That's certainly the theory. I'm sure that in many places it's also the practice. But around here, workers don't seem to chase down the guy on the birth certificate with the kind of zeal you would expect. Or any zeal at all. And they manage to contain their joy when a father appears and asks for custody. 

 

I think it may be part-and-parcel of the extreme social conservatism - the assumption is that if he's not mom's husband, there must be something shady about him. I saw a dad get shot down in court who was military, no criminal record, had a stable two-parent home to offer, and drove twelve hours to be at the hearing (mom had fled their original state of residence, without his permission or court permission, a few years earlier). The lawyer for the state said they "didn't know anything about him" - damned right, because they deliberately did not find out, although they had plenty of notice that he planned to appear. They did use the information gathered in court to serve him with a child support order, so that's nice. Cuss.gif

 

Anyhow, I'll be thinking of your family, OP. I wish you the best of luck. I really think it would be a good idea to talk to a lawyer - the workers may be seeking to place all the sibs together with a maternal relative, which would explain the lack of contact. A lawyer can probably argue against that and succeed, unless your husband has a record. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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#14 of 40 Old 03-25-2012, 10:35 AM - Thread Starter
 
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i understand that this is my stepsons mother i am talking about and that she is a parent of him also so is my husband, and when they broke up she is the one that left him after she found out she was pregnant because thats all she wanted was another baby. she admited that later. and there is nothing shady about my husband, and its not like he is going to go out shooting people he's not a psychopath. our lawyer did say that she thinks we have a damn good chance and they wont place him with a maternal relative because her boyfriend knows where they all live and has clearly used threats of assult rifles against all of them, he's the psychopath
 

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But this is the parent. They have rights that relatives do not have.

 

 

That's certainly the theory. I'm sure that in many places it's also the practice. But around here, workers don't seem to chase down the guy on the birth certificate with the kind of zeal you would expect. Or any zeal at all. And they manage to contain their joy when a father appears and asks for custody. 

 

I think it may be part-and-parcel of the extreme social conservatism - the assumption is that if he's not mom's husband, there must be something shady about him. I saw a dad get shot down in court who was military, no criminal record, had a stable two-parent home to offer, and drove twelve hours to be at the hearing (mom had fled their original state of residence, without his permission or court permission, a few years earlier). The lawyer for the state said they "didn't know anything about him" - damned right, because they deliberately did not find out, although they had plenty of notice that he planned to appear. They did use the information gathered in court to serve him with a child support order, so that's nice. Cuss.gif

 

Anyhow, I'll be thinking of your family, OP. I wish you the best of luck. I really think it would be a good idea to talk to a lawyer - the workers may be seeking to place all the sibs together with a maternal relative, which would explain the lack of contact. A lawyer can probably argue against that and succeed, unless your husband has a record. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 



 

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#15 of 40 Old 03-25-2012, 10:36 AM - Thread Starter
 
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oh and background checks are already in the works i just remembered that, and no neither one of us has any record of any kind

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#16 of 40 Old 03-25-2012, 01:39 PM
 
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I'm so glad you have a lawyer. I really think that based on what you've described, things are going to work out in the short term at least. Just to be clear, I wasn't trying to make any accusations about you guys having records or anything. I assumed that you did not.

 

If social services is already running background checks before your first court appearance, then they are probably resigned to, and possibly even enthusiastic about, placing your DSS in your home rather than in a foster home. 

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#17 of 40 Old 03-25-2012, 02:50 PM - Thread Starter
 
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oh no i know i didnt mean it to sound like i was being rude or anything.
 

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I'm so glad you have a lawyer. I really think that based on what you've described, things are going to work out in the short term at least. Just to be clear, I wasn't trying to make any accusations about you guys having records or anything. I assumed that you did not.

 

If social services is already running background checks before your first court appearance, then they are probably resigned to, and possibly even enthusiastic about, placing your DSS in your home rather than in a foster home. 



 

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#18 of 40 Old 03-25-2012, 02:55 PM - Thread Starter
 
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there is also other reasons all three of her children were removed and placed in foster homes, she left a 1 year old in a car alone for a very long amount of time while she was in a bar drinking, (not that i think leaving a child in a car alone is okay, other than like standing right next to the car pumping gas or something) her boyfriend played a "pass out" game with her oldest child where he would push down on the childs chest until he passed out, this is very hard to type it disgusts me, she claims that she couldnt break up with him and get him to move out because he has assult rifles that he has threatened her family and members of the county agency with, sorry but if someone had a gatling gun and said that they would harm my children with it, they would still be out that door that day i dont care what someone is going to do to me, im going to protect my children no matter the cost even if it is my own life, i dont care, i dont know why she didnt kick him out, beyond me. there are also brusises on her 1 year old childs face where her boyfriend grabbed ahold of his chin and cheeks and squeezed them hard, there is alot against her right now, im not sure of anything else that may come up on the 5th ill have to wait and see what the husband says about how it went, it's ridiculous i can't be there, who do they think will be taking care of her kid 24/7 once/if he is placed here.

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#19 of 40 Old 03-25-2012, 04:06 PM
 
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you guys are legally married and they won't allow you there? You should be able to go to court at least right?


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#20 of 40 Old 03-25-2012, 04:52 PM - Thread Starter
 
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for some reason i cant but her parents can i dont understand it myself
 

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you guys are legally married and they won't allow you there? You should be able to go to court at least right?



 

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#21 of 40 Old 03-26-2012, 05:56 AM
 
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You can certainly go to the courthouse, but you most likely will not be allowed in the court room. My old state is the same, family court proceedings are considered private, and only the parents are allowed. Or the custodian - if that person is not a parent. Step-parents are not allowed. I don't know if my new state is the same, I'm hoping I don't find out anytime soon (meaning I hope I don't have to go back to court anytime soon).
 

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for some reason i cant but her parents can i dont understand it myself
 



 



 

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#22 of 40 Old 03-26-2012, 07:50 AM
 
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Where i live, anyone can go in the courtroom...i mean, i suppose if you had NO reason to be there they would ask you to leave, but people can def. bring a support person. The wife of a parent would be fine, in fact i assume they would be glad the stepparent is taking such an interest. I sat in the courtroom several times before someone finally asked me who i was and why i was there. Then i found out we were supposed to sign in for the clerk.

 

And that was for the trial, in front of a judge, but the more informal update hearings (which are usually heard by a referree but we had a judge because the bparent requested it) i would imagine are even more open.


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#23 of 40 Old 03-27-2012, 09:37 AM
 
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I do have to say that those children do not need to go back to the mother because the mother will need extensive mental health after being treated in the way that she had. It can have a dominoe effect and she can pass the effects to the children. Which, it seems, she already has started to. It is very good that the kids were taken.

 

My brother is fighting for custody of his kids after a child protection agency forced the mother to give them up to the state. She had no choice. She agreed to give them up or she would have lost all contact with the kids. As far as we have been informed from social services, lawyer, foster parents, and paperwork with the incidents regarding how the house looked upon inspection, drug abuse, the type of environment they were exposed to (positive atmosphere to promote sexual abuse on children), and suicide attempts, my brother is looking like the better candidate for gaining custody of the children. The mother has a lawyer and is fighting for her kids back but still has to enroll into a rehab and is waiting for a bed. She expects to get the kids back very soon but with these findings and that everything has happened in the past few years. She will need more than a few weeks in rehab for heroine addiction. She will need at least 6 months in rehab in order to recover. She even failed a mental evaluation.

 

So, just know that he should be able to get the kids but once the mother loses custody of her kids to the state and the father takes custody. It is very hard for the mother to get them back if he has all of his ducks in a row.

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#24 of 40 Old 03-27-2012, 01:58 PM - Thread Starter
 
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i learned some new information today via the local newspaper, both she and her boyfriend are formally being charged with 3 counts of endangering the welfare of a child and two counts of leaving a child unattended in a motor vehicle

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#25 of 40 Old 03-27-2012, 02:05 PM - Thread Starter
 
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he definately has all of his ducks in a row, we have a three bedroom apartment that we rent, the bedrooms are set up so that my two girls share a room, and we have one set up so that our boys can share a bedroom also, and of course my husband and i have one, my living room is plenty big enough for four children to play, i have a huge yard outside that they can also run and play in, and my kitchen is decent sized but still plenty big enough space to eat as a family of 6. my kids have never been removed from my care, when my oldest daughter was born we did have an open case with the local children services, but that was voluntary because i was interested in a program they had for new parents and wanted to enroll. but other than that we have had absolutely no problem with me  nor my husband. the caseworker i had at that time the very first day she was there to see me i will never forget this day, she looked at me within being in my house for literally two minutes and said, "why am i even here" i know we have nothing to worry about, my house is cleaned up to ten times a day lol the only big mess i ever have is when my kids decide its time to spread toys from one end of my house to the other lol. but that is normal for a 1 1/2 year old and a 2 1/2 year old. but they are always picked up when they are done playing with them, with the help of the kids, my 5 month old is a very happy smiley baby, and my girls are also very happy until i say that evil "No" word then it's full blown temper tantrum, but i dont see any reason at all why they would say that he or I am unfit in any way. the only thing i can think of that may go against us is that I am already a stay at home mom to three children under three and I'm only 22. I just hope they don't hold my age against me or my husband.
 

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I do have to say that those children do not need to go back to the mother because the mother will need extensive mental health after being treated in the way that she had. It can have a dominoe effect and she can pass the effects to the children. Which, it seems, she already has started to. It is very good that the kids were taken.

 

My brother is fighting for custody of his kids after a child protection agency forced the mother to give them up to the state. She had no choice. She agreed to give them up or she would have lost all contact with the kids. As far as we have been informed from social services, lawyer, foster parents, and paperwork with the incidents regarding how the house looked upon inspection, drug abuse, the type of environment they were exposed to (positive atmosphere to promote sexual abuse on children), and suicide attempts, my brother is looking like the better candidate for gaining custody of the children. The mother has a lawyer and is fighting for her kids back but still has to enroll into a rehab and is waiting for a bed. She expects to get the kids back very soon but with these findings and that everything has happened in the past few years. She will need more than a few weeks in rehab for heroine addiction. She will need at least 6 months in rehab in order to recover. She even failed a mental evaluation.

 

So, just know that he should be able to get the kids but once the mother loses custody of her kids to the state and the father takes custody. It is very hard for the mother to get them back if he has all of his ducks in a row.



 

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#26 of 40 Old 03-27-2012, 03:29 PM
 
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I dont think they will hold it against you. The only think i can think of that might look bad is that you said your husband basically hasnt seen the child, doesnt have a relationship with him, because the mother made visitation difficult. No offense to your husband, but i never understood how a parent could just walk away from his child like that, because he doesnt want to deal with the mother. My niece's father had another daughter too and though he paid child support (had to have it taken out of his check), he never fought to see her. I dont get it. On the other hand, the fact that your husband HAS been paying child support will look good. If there is another relative who is closer to the child, and the child doesnt know your husband as "daddy"...they MAY look at them as a possible placement as well....but usually i'd think they'd go with the parent as long as they are a safe resource.


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#27 of 40 Old 03-27-2012, 04:00 PM - Thread Starter
 
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the problem with him not fighting more to see his son is that his exgirlfriend would be able to up his child support so much to the point that even if both of us were working, we would not be financially able to take care of the three children that live with us, and after she found out i was pregnant she told him that visitation was done with and that she would make sure he didnt have a chance in hell at ever seeing him again. he has a visitation with his son tomorrow afternoon i am so happy for him, then he will know that his dad does care and has been here all along for him all she ever had to do was call us and we would have been there to get him at the first sign of abusive trouble with her boyfriend she knows that, she knows no matter what she could have called us no matter what time and we would have made sure that he was safe. and i dont see why they would place him with anyone other than his own father because he is a very safe resource or i would not have married him or have had children with him.

 

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I dont think they will hold it against you. The only think i can think of that might look bad is that you said your husband basically hasnt seen the child, doesnt have a relationship with him, because the mother made visitation difficult. No offense to your husband, but i never understood how a parent could just walk away from his child like that, because he doesnt want to deal with the mother. My niece's father had another daughter too and though he paid child support (had to have it taken out of his check), he never fought to see her. I dont get it. On the other hand, the fact that your husband HAS been paying child support will look good. If there is another relative who is closer to the child, and the child doesnt know your husband as "daddy"...they MAY look at them as a possible placement as well....but usually i'd think they'd go with the parent as long as they are a safe resource.



 

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#28 of 40 Old 03-27-2012, 04:25 PM - Thread Starter
 
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and honestly i dont see where it even matters how much he has been allowed to be in his sons life before it was out of his ex's control its not like his son knows the people he was placed with when he entered foster care because he doesn't

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and honestly i dont see where it even matters how much he has been allowed to be in his sons life before it was out of his ex's control its not like his son knows the people he was placed with when he entered foster care because he doesn't



It probably wont matter to DHS at all. If he's the father and he's safe, he'll likely get the child, end of story. I was just making the point that i hear men all the time say "the ex wont LET me see the kid"...but the ex doesnt controlt he courts. You just said SHE would "up his child support" but again, she isnt control of that. And a man who wouldnt be able to support his first child to the fullest extent might of thought about that before having three more. That being said, this thread isnt about that. I dont know you or your husband and if its better for the child for him to be placed in your home, i sure hope he is placed there, sooner rather than later!

 

In terms of why it matters how much your dh has seen his son...my only point was if, hypothetically, there was, say an aunt or grandma that saw the boy regularly, babysat him, knows him very well, the argument could be that its a more appropriate placement than an absent father who hasnt seen the child hardly at all in three years. But it doesnt sound like that would apply in your stepchild's case.

 

How old is the child?

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#30 of 40 Old 03-28-2012, 08:47 AM - Thread Starter
 
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he is almost four, nobody has babysat him other than his grandparents that his mother lives with because she doesnt work. and as far as thinking about that before having three more and that its not up to her to up it that far, umm that came from the mediator herself she is the one that said she could get over 400 dollars a month in child support which is a little more than half my rent for the month. and i dont see where it matters that he had three more, i didnt know men weren't allowed to move on and have a family with someone else also, and tbh we only planned on one my other two umm surprised us so its not like we set out to have three more.
 

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It probably wont matter to DHS at all. If he's the father and he's safe, he'll likely get the child, end of story. I was just making the point that i hear men all the time say "the ex wont LET me see the kid"...but the ex doesnt controlt he courts. You just said SHE would "up his child support" but again, she isnt control of that. And a man who wouldnt be able to support his first child to the fullest extent might of thought about that before having three more. That being said, this thread isnt about that. I dont know you or your husband and if its better for the child for him to be placed in your home, i sure hope he is placed there, sooner rather than later!

 

In terms of why it matters how much your dh has seen his son...my only point was if, hypothetically, there was, say an aunt or grandma that saw the boy regularly, babysat him, knows him very well, the argument could be that its a more appropriate placement than an absent father who hasnt seen the child hardly at all in three years. But it doesnt sound like that would apply in your stepchild's case.

 

How old is the child?



 

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