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DH's custody hearing is two weeks from today...

I hope we're prepared. We've saved texts, emails, and FB/MS messages from BM, and I've told DH to document when he sees his DD (those few times BM lets him).

A few questions:

I Googled some things today, and came across a website that suggested DH get "personal character reference letters" from family, friends, and coworkers...has anyone heard of this? If you have, would I be able to write one for him?

Another website said to have a list of people who can/will testify for him, and their contact info. Do these people have to be local?

DH doesn't have a lawyer, because we couldn't afford one right now. I'm not too worried, because I'm 95% sure BM doesn't have a lawyer. I'm going to court with DH, as moral support (and because I unnerve BM, for some reason), and have tried to help him prepare as much as possible. Any suggestions or experiences from you ladies?

DH is going for joint custody. He'd originally put every other Fri-Mon (Monday was BM's idea) and every Thursday overnight, but has recently changed it to every Thurs-Mon (all days that BM works). His DD is 15 months old.

Much appreciated ladies!


Asked by JustCantWait88 at 7:51 PM on Apr. 25, 2011 in General Parenting

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This question is closed.
Answers (8)
  • Yes, get references. No, it can't be you. Yes, get list of witnesses, no, they don't have to be local but if the judge calls one and they don't answer, he will get pissed. Joint custody is a hard one to get. I personally like to stare when I go to court. It freaks them out. Good luck.

    Answer by emmyandlisa at 8:00 PM on Apr. 25, 2011

  • The way I see it. Its better to have more than less. At the very least I would have a list of references ready... local or long distance. I would not really see a wife as a character witness b/c well.... its not exactly an unbiased/disinterested party. But maybe if you can get one from a minister or some others it may not be too bad an idea.
    Is this trial or just court date in front of the judge???

    In oune of the custody groups I'm often in they were recently discussing a book "Strong Fathers, Strong Daughters".

    Also, I've heard it suggested to go in saying why DH is so important etc. rather than why the other is not.

    Answer by MamiJaAyla at 8:01 PM on Apr. 25, 2011

  • All I can say is make sure whatever he's asking for is in the best interests of the child. That's what the judge will look at. He will also look at if what you're doing now, compared to what you're asking for is better for the child. IMO letting it go before a judge to tell you when and how you see your child is ludicrous. Your DH and his ex should have come to a mutual agreement outside of court. There's not a judge in the land that should have that kind of power over your family, and lives. IMO... Once it's in writing that's the way it will go, and then if something arises, then you will have to go back to court. He should have also consulted with an attorney to protect himself. If he's going into the courtroom without representation, then he's at the mercy of the court, and that can have a very disappointing outcome. I hope you get what your looking for, GL.

    Answer by MrsLeftlane at 8:02 PM on Apr. 25, 2011

  • Yes been to court too many times to count dh has custody and coo coo bm has supervised visits. And yeah character references are never a bad idea especially if any of the people know her and how horrible she is they can also write one about that.

    Answer by Genice6 at 10:01 AM on Apr. 26, 2011

  • Thanks ladies. I didn't think I could write a letter, but I thought it'd be worth a shot. The lawyer I consulted with while DH was in military training (forgot that tidbit of info) did say I could be called as a witness, so maybe my letter will still count? DH and his ex have gone to 2 mediations so far, and neither can agree with the other. His ex holds me against him, and always says she doesn't want their DD around me. For no reason, because she has nothing to use against me. She doesn't know me...we've met twice, and talked, but her only reason is that I'm the new one, and she's pissed. DH saw his DD yesterday for Easter, and BM said they "need to set up another mediation". DH doesn't want too, since all they do is argue (and the mediator has been biased against him since day one). I was going to suggest he go one more time before court, but to hold his ground.

    Comment by JustCantWait88 (original poster) at 8:15 PM on Apr. 25, 2011

  • Be prepared to spend the entire court time out in the hall, because if mom says you can't be there that's where you'll end up. Odds are that, since you have no involvement in the case you'll end up there anyway. Most courts will only allow mom and dad in the courtroom unless *both* parties agree.

    Answer by desert_diva at 8:52 PM on Apr. 25, 2011

  • I asked the lawyer; he said custody hearings are open to the public. At least in Oregon.

    Comment by JustCantWait88 (original poster) at 8:57 PM on Apr. 25, 2011

  • Thanks Genice!! Can I write a letter too?

    Comment by JustCantWait88 (original poster) at 2:25 PM on Apr. 27, 2011