Just about every day I receive requests for help with issues relating to child-custody and child-support, often quite a few of such requests on a given day.
The following message is an example, and my response is appended.
On 29/09/2010 1:07 PM, Tom [not his real name] wrote:
Hi guys, I really need help right now... The ex is asking for more money after almost 7 year of paiements being done EVERY month. She moved away 12 hours from here, in another province (i live in canada) with her new boyfriend in the army and now tells me she has the kids (2 of them, girl-11 and boy-8) more often blablabla... No one can tell me what to do or what would i have really to pay... they all say i need to get a lawyer, wich i can not.... no money for that. i'm 35, has a good job as a tehnician, always paid my pension... i've been screwd many times by layer...i still owe them money... i need help.... thinking about finishing it off real soon... thanks, Tom
Are you in touch with a fathers rights organization where you live? If not, then check this directory.
Here are links to some articles that contain responses to help requests like yours (found by searching fathersforlife.org for “how to find a fathers-rights organization”)
Make sure that when you try to find organizations you pick those that have frequent meetings of their members. Attend those meetings and get to know some of the members and their issues. You will then soon learn which of those organizations you find are best.
The men you will meet are at various stages of their custody and support battles. You will learn more from them than you can learn from any lawyer.
Try to get advice on what to do to represent yourself in court.
Get your case into a Court of Queens Bench or into a Court of Justice other than the Family Court. If you need to know why that is so, ask me again, but I suggest that you first try to discuss that with the Fathers rights organizations you find in your area.
Still, if you need to ask me, there is little more I can tell you than what is contained in this article: Freedom, Equality, and Society’s Treatment of Men and Families. That article was found through this search for articles on the subject of the history of the family court.
You may think that I am throwing a lot of reading material at you, and that that does not really help you. If so, consider that you need to understand the context of the difficulties you find yourself in. If you don’t understand that context, then you will not be able to find a solution, and, most importantly, you will not be able to tell your lawyer what he needs to do for you.
Don’t think that it will help you to hire a lawyer and have him do all of that for you. If that is the way you feel will help you, then you may as well sign a blank cheque and let him fill in the amount.
Your relationship to a lawyer is similar to that between you and a building contractor. You are the boss and will have to foot the bills. He works for you, and to be able to do that right, you will need to give him a set of blueprints, agree with him on a price for what he must do for you, when, where, how and why it needs to be done. (For more on that read some of the articles you can find by searching for “how to select a lawyer”.)
Moreover, you will need to make sure that your lawyer does all of that at the right time, in the right place, in the right way and for the right reasons.
You may think that all of that is a lot of work. If so, then you are exactly right. The money involved, alone, makes it important enough that you do all of that work. Moreover, you will have to make sure that the right things are being done for your kids. After all, that is why you became a father, right?