Words from the trenches of a litigated custody issue…these clients worked diligently in mediation and reached what appeared to be a complete settlement; unfortunately, emotions took over and the allure of the court and desire for a better outcome made final agreement impossible. In this case, mother and father were unmarried and had a long-term relationship which included jointly raising their two young boys in one home. These are the real stories which fuel my passion for helping keep parents out of court whenever possible…
I hope all is well with you. I wanted to let you know how this all turned out just for your information on how the court is dealing with these situations – at least in this case.
I was awarded sole physical custody and we have joint legal custody. The judge kept the parenting schedule the same (Tuesday and Fridays without overnights and every other weekend from Friday night until Sunday at 6pm). In addition, they awarded me both tax deductions since they recognize that I had been and would continue to pay the majority of the boys’ expenses. The holiday schedule also stayed the same as we had come up with in mediation.
So basically everything we agreed to in mediation stayed the same except for the physical custody label and the tax deduction. In addition I incurred thousands in legal fees that could have paid for a year or more of college education.
Had we just stuck with the agreement we had in place with you things would have been much simpler and a lot less stress. I hope you can use this story somehow to keep someone from headed down the court route and just sticking with mediation.
Unfortunately it takes two. Thanks again for your work that provided much of the framework for this case. Obviously the judge agreed with your assessment of the boys’ ages and needs.
Have a great day.