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Old 04-23-2013, 07:10 AM
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Default Advice And Tips Needed!! DCD Being Served Court Papers Tomorrow!

This is the first divorce situation that I have had in my daycare in the four years that I have been open!! But this one seems to be more than just a divorce situation.

DCD is an alcoholic and has been in jail recently for an alcohol related incident. He is out of jail, and DCM has tried to kick him out of the house but he refuses to leave. Since his name is on the house, she has been told there is nothing she can do until there are divorce papers. She completed the necessary paperwork for divorce last week; and informed me that tomorrow; DCD will be served papers for divorce AND he will have to pack his things and leave the house. Not only that, but the papers apparently will also state that for two weeks, he will not be allowed anywhere near their house OR my house. He will no longer be allowed to pick her up from daycare. After the two week period is over, she says I will receive new court papers stating he will be allowed supervised visitation only, and will still never be allowed to pick up his daughter from daycare.

I am a little nervous. I have asked her how she thinks DCD will react to being served these papers; and she stated she is worried because he gets very angry sometimes. Other than making sure I've got the house locked up, and the court papers that I need; is there anything else I should do in preparation or be mentally prepared for? I want to make sure I've got all my ducks in a row and prepared for the worst tomorrow! Thanks in advance for any advice or tips!! For those that believe in the power of prayer- I would appreciate any prayers you can offer for this little one and her family.
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Old 04-23-2013, 07:14 AM
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Call your local non-emergency police line and alert them to the situation. Ask them to do drive bys in the following weeks and keep an eye on your street for anything suspicious. It's better to have the police know the situation now vs. calling in a panic and trying to explain. Let dcm know that you are doing this as well.
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Old 04-23-2013, 07:19 AM
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In my city we have something called Property Watch. Basically, if you have a description of the car and/or person that may pose a threat to your home or otherwise cause harm the officer closest to your area will add your street to the patrol route. This helps an officer be close in the case an incident should happen. I've had to do this twice (because of my own Ex-H who was abusive). It is a free service by our local police department. My prayer goes out to the mother and daughter and the husband as well to get his life together. My situation is a little different, but I know and understand all of the feelings that go along with it.
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Old 04-23-2013, 07:31 AM
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Thank you ladies! That is a very good idea. I hadn't thought about calling the local Police department in advance to at least make them aware of the situation and to ask for added patrols. I just made the call, and a deputy will be contacting me shortly to discuss added patrols!.
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Old 04-23-2013, 07:35 AM
Willow Willow is offline
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Just make sure you have the suspension of parental custody paperwork before you do anything.

Filing for divorce is just filing for divorce. They are not judge jury and executioner paperwork that outlines who can see the child and when. Save for her getting an additional restraining order over safety concerns I'm not sure how she thinks the filing of the divorce paperwork will net her those same results. They will outline what she *wants* to have happen, there is nothing saying that *is* what she's going to get and I hope she understands that. Him getting them just gives him time to seek legal council and respond.

No judge sees a mere legal filing. Nor does one declare custody (or living arrangements in regards to their housing situation) until well into the process if not on the very court date, and the only one who can suspend or alter parental custody is a judge. I really think she's trying to dupe you here to get you on her side as far as that goes.

I'd really hate to see you get sucked into a personal matter and then be held liable for withholding someone's child illegally just because mom sold you a line of bologna.




(As a parent I would it think it would be reasonable for a dad to be extremely upset if he heard his kids were fixing to be held from him, legally or not. You can protect yourself by being unbiased and fair. Only alter your current arrangement if you receive the custody specific paperwork telling you you should.)
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Old 04-23-2013, 07:37 AM
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Also, expect his first response to definitely show up. And just go ahead and expect he will make it to your door. Figure out your game plan now. Plan for all situations. Keep your door locked, if you have an assistant or loved one there, fill them in and discuss the game plan. My game plan is to call 911 immediately, and while on the phone with 911 and through the door, explain to dad you have papers making his presence there illegal. Tell him the cops are on the phone with you as you are telling him this. And tell him to leave immediately and not to come back. Al of that will be on 911 recording. And don't forget, as soon as he arrives and you call 911 have your friend, spouse anyone you can ask to be with you tomorrow to remove the kids immediately to a safe already discussed location in the house and stay there behind a locked door until its safe to come out... If its planned you can tell the kids you are having a drill of some kind and be as calm as possible, no matter what. This is my plan, and yes, once I had to execute that.
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Old 04-23-2013, 07:53 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Willow View Post
Just make sure you have the suspension of parental custody paperwork before you do anything.

Filing for divorce is just filing for divorce. They are not judge jury and executioner paperwork that outlines who can see the child and when. Save for her getting an additional restraining order over safety concerns I'm not sure how she thinks the filing of the divorce paperwork will net her those same results. They will outline what she *wants* to have happen, there is nothing saying that *is* what she's going to get and I hope she understands that. Him getting them just gives him time to seek legal council and respond.

No judge seeks a legal filing until well into the process, and the only one who can suspend or alter parental custody is a judge.

I'd really hate to see you get sucked into a personal matter and then be held liable for withholding someone's child.




(As a parent I would it think it would be reasonable for a dad to be extremely upset if he heard his kids were fixing to be held from him, legally or not. You can protect yourself by being unbiased and fair. Only alter your current arrangement if you receive the custody specific paperwork telling you you should.)

Thank you! I definitely was already aware that I MUST have that paperwork before I can withhold his daughter from him- but I was not aware until just now that it must be signed by a judge. I just spoke to the town deputy and he emphasized multiple times that the paperwork I receive MUST be signed by a judge to be legally able to withhold his daughter from him. I do not have the paperwork yet, so I am not sure if it's going to be signed by the judge (it is supposed to be emailed to me sometime today). I will definitely have to talk with DCM if it is not!
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Old 04-23-2013, 07:58 AM
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Originally Posted by Lilbutterflie View Post
Thank you! I definitely was already aware that I MUST have that paperwork before I can withhold his daughter from him- but I was not aware until just now that it must be signed by a judge. I just spoke to the town deputy and he emphasized multiple times that the paperwork I receive MUST be signed by a judge to be legally able to withhold his daughter from him. I do not have the paperwork yet, so I am not sure if it's going to be signed by the judge (it is supposed to be emailed to me sometime today). I will definitely have to talk with DCM if it is not!


I'm so happy to hear you checked into that.

When I went through my divorce the first and only thing the judge signed was our final divorce decree after our court date. It was the very last thing we did.

I'd bet what you will get is a copy of what she filed or a copy of what she filed signed by court administration.....they are not the same thing as a finalized order signed by a judge.

Judges do not sign anything like that electronically!!!!


Since you have a good working relationship with law enforcement it wouldn't hurt to swing in with what you do get to confirm how to proceed.
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Old 04-23-2013, 08:11 AM
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She more then likely has filed the papers, these won't be signed till the divorce is final. Question, is she using a lawyer or going through the domestic courts?

She then has probably filed a restraining order and those are prossesed immediately and signed by a judge. You receive the paperwork immediately, there should be no waiting for them in the mail.

Those will state the leaving the house, no contact with the child, not to be within so many feet, yards of the person. This has to be kept in the childs file at all times.

You can legally call the courthouse and ask if any papers have been filed (this is public information). I would also call your licensor today and talk to them about this situation and ask what steps you need to have covered in this situation.
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Old 04-23-2013, 08:47 AM
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Originally Posted by Country Kids View Post
She more then likely has filed the papers, these won't be signed till the divorce is final. Question, is she using a lawyer or going through the domestic courts?

She then has probably filed a restraining order and those are prossesed immediately and signed by a judge. You receive the paperwork immediately, there should be no waiting for them in the mail.

Those will state the leaving the house, no contact with the child, not to be within so many feet, yards of the person. This has to be kept in the childs file at all times.

You can legally call the courthouse and ask if any papers have been filed (this is public information). I would also call your licensor today and talk to them about this situation and ask what steps you need to have covered in this situation.
I realize now that her communication with me has been limited and indeed there are a lot of questions that she needs to answer! LOL I have called her and asked that she call me back to answer my questions.

My understanding from what she has told me was that she met with a lawyer a couple weeks ago, and visited the courts last Thursday. It sounds like she has filed for a restraining order or possibly a protective order. Either way, I am now unsure why she did not get these documents immediately since she was already at the court. We live in a small town and things don't always run the same with our courts- so perhaps that is why. Also, yesterday she told me that they initially did not tell her she needed a notarized affidavit, so she has to take time off work today to get it to them.

Again, I thank you ladies! You have helped me raise further questions and to get all my ducks in a row so that I am protected!! Lots of things I didn't know about or think of in regards to this situation. I have never had any personal or business experience with any of this!!
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Old 04-23-2013, 08:53 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lilbutterflie View Post
Thank you! I definitely was already aware that I MUST have that paperwork before I can withhold his daughter from him- but I was not aware until just now that it must be signed by a judge. I just spoke to the town deputy and he emphasized multiple times that the paperwork I receive MUST be signed by a judge to be legally able to withhold his daughter from him. I do not have the paperwork yet, so I am not sure if it's going to be signed by the judge (it is supposed to be emailed to me sometime today). I will definitely have to talk with DCM if it is not!
Yes, it must be signed by a judge. If she has had a temporary hearing (almost like a mini-divorce before the big divorce to make certain things/people off limits) then she will have the paperwork. If she JUST filed for a divorce, then it's very likely she does not have that paperwork yet.
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Old 04-23-2013, 08:55 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Country Kids View Post
She more then likely has filed the papers, these won't be signed till the divorce is final. Question, is she using a lawyer or going through the domestic courts?

She then has probably filed a restraining order and those are prossesed immediately and signed by a judge. You receive the paperwork immediately, there should be no waiting for them in the mail.

Those will state the leaving the house, no contact with the child, not to be within so many feet, yards of the person. This has to be kept in the childs file at all times.

You can legally call the courthouse and ask if any papers have been filed (this is public information). I would also call your licensor today and talk to them about this situation and ask what steps you need to have covered in this situation.
I had papers a little under a month after I filed for divorce stating what was off limits amidst various other things that were not restraining order papers. They detailed what he could and could not do.
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Old 04-23-2013, 09:22 AM
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I had papers a little under a month after I filed for divorce stating what was off limits amidst various other things that were not restraining order papers. They detailed what he could and could not do.
I do believe that this is more than just divorce papers. She has not been specific (as soon as she answers my phone call I will ask the detailed questions), but I do believe there will be divorce papers in addition to either a restraining order or protection order. Whichever it may be; the court is waiting for her to turn in a notarized affidavit in order to obtain the court papers we need. This is all supposed to be done today, and he is supposedly going to be served the papers tomorrow.
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Old 04-23-2013, 10:23 AM
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You have gotten some good advice.

The only thing I could add is that if you are forced to let him pick up because you have no official papers or whatever but you think he is drunk you should call the police immediately. Maybe the wife could give you his make and model of car and license plate number for that scenario.

Laurel
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Old 04-23-2013, 10:29 AM
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Yes another reason I have that in my policy. They are required to pickup Ina safe and approved age appropriate legal car seat or booster and it states if they appear to be impaired, the police and Dhs will be called immediately... They sign that section individually.... Ive actually had that happen before.
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Old 04-23-2013, 10:31 AM
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Yes another reason I have that in my policy. They are required to pickup Ina safe and approved age appropriate legal car seat or booster and it states if they appear to be impaired, the police and Dhs will be called immediately... They sign that section individually.... Ive actually had that happen before.
Me too. I have a similar policy in my handbook about it too.
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Old 04-23-2013, 10:45 AM
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I once had a dad show up to pick up a child, who was under the influence. I had added it into my policy that I would ask them not to take the child, but if they insisted I would call the police with their license plate number.

This same dad commited suicide some time after that...so I don't put anything past anyone who is an alcoholic or drug addict.

From what you described I would almost bet their will be court ordered documents prepared which will not allow dad to have contact with child due to his drinking...and who knows what else.

Just please, please be careful and have your plan very well thought out to protect everyone in the home should he show up.
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Old 04-23-2013, 10:55 AM
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Originally Posted by Lilbutterflie View Post
I do believe that this is more than just divorce papers. She has not been specific (as soon as she answers my phone call I will ask the detailed questions), but I do believe there will be divorce papers in addition to either a restraining order or protection order. Whichever it may be; the court is waiting for her to turn in a notarized affidavit in order to obtain the court papers we need. This is all supposed to be done today, and he is supposedly going to be served the papers tomorrow.
Yes, what I was referencing to was in addition to divorce papers. He was served divorce papers a few days after I filed and I had to go to court to get the additional paperwork (which is not a restraining or protection order).

Hopefully she is able to get it all in and you are able to obtain a copy of the restraining order/protection order for your facility!
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Old 04-23-2013, 11:42 AM
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Update:

I have spoken to DCM, and it is indeed a protective order in addition to divorce papers. She is getting a notarized affidavit for the court today; giving it to the judge tomorrow. The judge will be signing the papers tomorrow; and the papers are supposed to be served to DCD as he is leaving work tomorrow evening. I have made it very clear to DCM to try to get me those papers before he is served, but she is making it sound like he will be served right after they are signed. Fortunately, DCD works later hours than DCM, and I think DCM will be picking her daughter up before DCD is served the papers.

I also mentioned to DCM that I have contacted the local authorities and they have agreed to do extra patrols of my neighborhood once I have the protective order. I told her they requested she call them to request extra patrols in and around her house as well.

I have been extremely aware and cautious about DCD picking up his daughter. He has never appeared to be intoxicated, smelled like alcohol, or given me any indication that he was impaired. It is only once or twice a month that he picks her up. However; he always walks instead of driving his car (they live a couple blocks away). According to DCM, he cannot start his car without passing a breathalyzer test.
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Old 04-23-2013, 11:44 AM
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Praying for you!
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Old 04-23-2013, 12:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lilbutterflie View Post
Update:

I have spoken to DCM, and it is indeed a protective order in addition to divorce papers. She is getting a notarized affidavit for the court today; giving it to the judge tomorrow. The judge will be signing the papers tomorrow; and the papers are supposed to be served to DCD as he is leaving work tomorrow evening. I have made it very clear to DCM to try to get me those papers before he is served, but she is making it sound like he will be served right after they are signed. Fortunately, DCD works later hours than DCM, and I think DCM will be picking her daughter up before DCD is served the papers.

I also mentioned to DCM that I have contacted the local authorities and they have agreed to do extra patrols of my neighborhood once I have the protective order. I told her they requested she call them to request extra patrols in and around her house as well.

I have been extremely aware and cautious about DCD picking up his daughter. He has never appeared to be intoxicated, smelled like alcohol, or given me any indication that he was impaired. It is only once or twice a month that he picks her up. However; he always walks instead of driving his car (they live a couple blocks away). According to DCM, he cannot start his car without passing a breathalyzer test.

While I am glad you have a plan to keep you and yours safe, I do hope this mom isn't just trying to scare you or garner undue sympathy.

Unfortunately lots of couples going through a divorce will try to pit common parties in their lives against each other. Remember that almost anyone can get an emergency order of protection, but only those in true danger can keep one in place. If you've never seen anything amiss with him, all the time in care the child has been healthy and happy, and if at the OFP hearing he'll be entitled to after being served they pull it please try to give him some benefit of the doubt.

After leaving a physically abusive marriage myself it drives me nuts when women play that card to come off as the victim. I *wish* my ex-husband would have been a decent father. It flat out ticks me off when many dads are great parents, but moms wants custody and freedom so they abuse the court system in order to keep them apart. You'd be shocked and horrified to know how many do it......

I'm not saying he's innocent by any means but please don't paint him as guilty and dangerous until you have proof. I know that can be hard and you definitely need to protect yourself but I'd implore you protect yourself from them both at this point until the truth actually emerges.
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