In April, I made the post – menz.org.nz/2014/family-court-revamp/ about my understanding of the new Family Court System, as I go though it.
Well 7 Months later I can give you an update.
ITS A CROCK OF *$%#@
Having previously gone though the old system over a period of 3 years, at no point in those 3 years did I go more than 2 months without seeing my son. The last time I saw my son now was the 13th of June…..
Brief rundown of events up till now….
December 2010 – Parenting Order made by consent after a defended hearing
January 2011 – First contravention of PO by ex
March 2011 – Ex decided to move child schools, without discussing it with me first.
March – June 2011 – Multiple Contraventions of PO
September 2011 – I move to Australia, with the intention of continuing PO, but with contact in Australia instead of Auckland
September 2011 – March 2013 – Phone contact 3 times, face to face contact 1 (10 min)
March 2013 – Move back to NZ, Broke so can’t commit to any fixed contact, don’t push the issue.
January 2014 – Get job that involves travel to town son lives in – Propose a “reintroduction plan”
February 2014 – First contact since December 2012 – Re-introduction plan is rejected, told I can see son when ever I am in town.
March 2014 – Last minute changes to organised contact
May 2014 – After waiting for 20 days for ex to respond to a contact request, I tell her that if she can’t respond in a reasonable time farm, I will look at going to FDR, and explain the process. Get a response that If I take it to FDR she will stop all contact. – Undertake Parenting though separation course so I can say I have done it if I need to take it to FDR….
June 2014 – Contact cut short for son to have afternoon Tea with Grandparents (who look after him before and after school regularly)
June 2014 – 10 Days after requesting an option of days for contact during the school holidays, no response – Engage Fairway
25 June 2014 – I engaged Fairway Dispute Resolution to start the FDR process, they explain the process to me, which includes sending the other party a letter, followed by calling them, then organising the mediation.
29th June 2014 – Text ex on behalf of sons great granddad, get told to go away, leave her alone, and stop messaging her or she will have me blocked.
4th July 2014 – Call Fairway for an update – Have yet to get in touch with ex
11th July 2014 – Call Fairway for an update – Have yet to get in touch with ex
22 July 2014 – Call Fairway for an update – Told that they have not even attempted to call yet, and they have to give a reasonable amount of time for the other party to respond to the letter….
31st July – Cal Fairway for an update – Told they had called on two occasions, and just left messages, can not give me a certificate of non attendance yet.
8th August 2014 – Issued with Certificate of non Attendance, – now able to take case back to the Family Court
12th August 2014 – Send in Affidavit and application as I had in previous years…
18th August 2014 – Get file rejected as it is not on the correct forms. – directed to refile on the correct forms.
16th September 2014 – File correct forms to the court directly
3rd October 2014 – File Served on ex – given 21 days to respond
17 October 2014 – Ex Files notice of defence, states she did not understand the mediation process, and that she would like to take part in mediation.
24th October 2014 – Judge directs us back to FDR – Same day I engage Fairway again. – Inform Fairway that I will be in sons town on the 13th/14th of November, and could organise to stay through to the 17th if a mediation could be organised for any of those days.
10th November – Call Fairway for an update – have not got hold of ex yet, so no mediation will be happening on suggested days.
17th November – Informed they had been in touch with ex, and that she is agreeable to mediation – case now put to the duty mediator to find a mediator to take on the case.
21st November – Get a phone call saying they have fowarded the case to a mediator to consider, and asking if I am willing to travel, or do I want a Skype mediation. I state I am willing to travel.
27th November – Call Fairway for an update – told still waiting for a mediator to accept the case. and undertake the due diligence to ensure no conflict of interest exists.
And here we are now on the 1st of December – no more updates as of yet. 24 days sleeps till christmas, which was one of the reasons why I started the process back in June….. to try and come to an agreement for contact for Christmas…. and fairway still can’t give even a close approximation for a date for mediation.
So as you can see I am stoked about the way the new system is going to be so much faster…. The good old delaying tactics “oh I didn’t realise” still stand, and work even better than they used to…..
UPDATE 8th December 2014
2nd December 2014 – Get contacted by the person who has been assigned our case for Family dispute resolution. I mention to them I am avalible at any time or day, I just want this sorted. He says he will contact my ex and try and get a date before Christmas.
Tomorrow (9th of December) is a case review, on the minute from the judge, they state about how if agreement is reached, we are to file a memorandum of consent, if agrement is not reached, then we are to file a certificate of completion, with a list of issues not agreed upon. However there is nothing about if Mediation has not taken place…..
So I filed a Memorandum stating that a mediator had only just been assigned, but no date has been set yet. I then contacted the mediator to ensure there is nothing else to include, and surprise surprise he is having trouble getting in touch with my ex. He briefly spoke with her last week and surprise surprise she cant do the mediation until after Christmas, the 13th of January to be exact… However she can’t confirm that yet…… (I think im starting to see Febuary on its way….)