For 3 years there was an ongoing legal battle costing 10s of thousands of dollars. On 21 November 2016 consent court orders were finally made which set out when and how I would have access to my children. I now realise I was naive to believe with court orders in place my children and my time together would be protected.
Since the orders have been in place instead of spending time with the children when the court orders identify I only get to spend time with my children when the other party is comfortable with it.
My children and I didn't get to celebrate Christmas together in 2016 and at times I have gone a month or more without seeing my children.
Even though the Orders cater for it, this year I did not get to spend time with my children on my son's 9th birthday in February or on Father's Day in September.
I only see my children every second weekend from Friday afternoon to Sunday afternoon. To compensate for the time we've lost together the orders allow me to call the children twice a week however these calls don't occur. The only way I can connect with the children outside of our weekend time is by going to their school in the afternoon for 10 minutes before they're picked up, or to their extra circular activities but I never know if they are going to be there.
I've had to defend myself against several vexatious police reports and when I've gone to the police for help I've been told by them they can't do anything to help because it's family law and I have to go back to court to have it dealt with. So that's what I am doing.
My children are missing out on the whole other side of their family. I have to fight now to prevent my children and I being completely alienated from each other's lives.
Family Law is so expensive. My lawyer has just filled for court and the cost just for the preparation for that is $4700 and another $500 for subpoenas. I am not eligible for legal aid. In the new year with court looming there will be further preparation expenses and barrister fees. If anyone can help, no matter how small my children and I would be so grateful.
Thank you very much.
- Shaun Spada
- James Carolan
- Sophie Bromage
- Joel Lamb
- TCO Industries
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