Denying Visitation

I’m not sure what to suggest on this…I know that legally she can not withold or deny you visitations for any reason. If you have a court order then it must be followed or she could be held in contempt. But just because someone can not legally do something does not mean that they don’t go right ahead and do it…
If you knew where they were you could take the court order to the local authorities and have them enforce it but since it’s not processed into NC yet, that may not be an option…maybe a family member could track them down…maybe ask why there was no claim submitted in October and if a claim is filed it may have an address. The school should have an address for her…

Your ex seems to like being in control and manipulating the system…maybe use that to your advantage. Maybe make her believe that you have found out her address and will be there to pick the children up at a specific time/date. You don’t have to be specific…just say that you know where she is and don’t argue with her. Let her know that you will have the copy of the court order. Don’t discuss it…let her worry. Get on the offensive with this. Record the conversation!! Just tell her that you are looking into the insurance fraud, because you know that the child went to the doctor in Oct but no claim was filed. Let her know that there’s been no doctor appointment since then so the ulcer thing is a lie. Don’t LET her get away with lying about something. Let her know that you know the truth and are taking legal action. Make her believe that you are holding more cards than you actually have and maybe she will say something that can be used. Let her know that it is against the law for her to keep the children from you.
Please consult with an attorney, and get back control of this situation before there is too much time gone by…Do not let money stand in the way of your children’s lives.

I have consulted a lawyer, but they have told me that until the case is transferred, and until I know for sure which county that it will be transferred to then they can not help me. Her physical address in Plymouth is in Washington county. Her mailing P.O Box is in Beaufort county. I do have an address in Plymouth, but anytime I send any mail to it the post man sends it back as an insufficient address, and I have tried to pull it up through mapquest with no success. Since I am not familiar with the area there, I would hate to drive all the way there without being able to retrieve my kids. I have contacted the local authorities there as well and they say that they can not help me either, since the case is not processed into the NC system yet. I have tried to pull up public records for beaufort and washington counties online but it seems as though these counties do not have their records available online yet. She hung up on me this morning when I tried to get her to set up a definite pick up and drop off time for the visitation, and I did not have the opportunity to record the conversation because I was driving on my way to work this morning. I am not afraid to spend money, I have already spent over $30,000 in the Florida court system trying to get custody, and everytime I was turned down by a judge because he told me he does not punish people for being poor, and that the only way that I could get my hands on them would be if she were a strung out druggie, or if she was living on the street with them, and believe me they have come close to that; on several occasions living in motels. I do not know typically how long it takes to transfer a case, but it looks as though she will be the victor due to a slow court process. I just can’t believe that there are so many good fathers like me that pay their support every month, and try their hardest to be involved in their children’s lives only to be shut out by a system that since the beginning of its inception has been in favor of the rights of the mother.

Todd Zimmerman

Have you consitered a private detective? This can help two fold… it could give you a definate physical address and they can take pictures of the living conditions the children exsist in. This may be helpful in the event of court. Also, when you have a location on her, contact the local sheriff, have him go with you to get you kids. Even if the case is in transfer, there is an order (even if it is out of state) that says they are to spend Christmas with you.

The change of venue from Florida to North Carolina would have been changed to the specific county in which your ex currently resides. There are 3 things that can hold up the change of venue:

  1. The attorney who is required to finalize the written order doesn’t get it done in a timely manner.
  2. The originating county doesn’t bother to get the paperwork moving
  3. The receiving county doesn’t bother to file the paperwork.
    First, check with your attorney in FL to be sure that the final written order was filed. If it was, then call the Clerk of Courts for the county in Florida and make them tell you what has happened to the paperwork. It may take about an hour on the phone (and several moves up the chain of command), BUT MAKE THEM FIND THE PAPERWORK OR TELL YOU WHAT HAS HAPPENED TO IT. If the paperwork has been sent to NC, they can tell you where it was sent. In that case, call the Clerk of Courts for the NC county and find out if they have it and if they have filed it. YOU DO NOT NEED A LAWYER FOR THIS and the Clerks of Courts cannot deny you this information - they work for the taxpayers. My husband and I went through this a few months ago and finally had to call the Clerk of Courts in the original county only to find out that our paperwork was sitting on someone’s desk who had broken their ankle and had been away from work for a month - no one had bothered to check her desk to see what was on it. We made such a stink on the phone that the paperwork was sent electronically to the new county within 2 hours. Since you’re clearly going to court again against your ex, you should hire an attorney in the county where the new venue resides. Finally, if you have a court order stipulating your visitation over Christmas (and it doesn’t matter where that paperwork is from - FL, NC or wherever), you can take that paperwork with you when you go to pick up the kids and contact the local sheriff’s department. Most law enforcement agencies dislike getting involved in visitation and custody disputes, but they will make the effort to call her or go to her home on your behalf to assist you in getting your visitation.

If you have a court order you can ask law enforcement to assist you with enforcing your court order, they should help, even if the venue transfer is not yet complete.

If you have an attorney assisting you with the venue transfer I would call them and ask for them to speed this up as much as you can.

If she denies Christmas visitation you can file a “motion and order to show cause” as a remedy you an ask the court to give you alternate time with your children.

The case should be transferred to the county where she lives, not the county where she has a P.O. Box. I wish you the best of luck.

Helena M. Nevicosi
Attorney with Rosen Law Firm

4101 Lake Boone Trail, Suite 500
Raleigh, North Carolina 27607
919.787.6668 main phone
919.787.6361 main fax

Charlotte Office
301 McCullough Drive
Suite 510
Charlotte, NC 28262
Main Phone: (704)307.4600
Main Fax: (704) 9343.0044

Durham & Chapel Hill Office
1829 East Franklin Street
Building 600
Chapel Hill, NC 27514
(919) 321.0780


The response posted above is based upon the limited factual information made available and is not intended as a full and complete response to the question. The only reliable manner to obtain complete and adequate legal advice is to consult with an attorney, fully explain your situation, and allow the attorney sufficient opportunity to research the applicable law and facts required to render an accurate opinion. The basic information provided above is intended as a public service only, a full discussion with an attorney should be undertaken before taking any action. The information posted on this forum is available for public viewing and is not intended to create an attorney client relationship with any individual. These answers are provided for informational purposes only, a person should consult with their own individual legal counsel before taking any action that could affect their legal rights or obligations.

just can’t believe that there are so many good fathers like me that pay their support every month, and try their hardest to be involved in their children’s lives only to be shut out by a system that since the beginning of its inception has been in favor of the rights of the mother.
Todd, Your situation sounds so similiar to my husbands, except he has moved from N.C. (the ex and kids still live there) to Ohio. How do you get a change of venue?
Like someone else said, even though you have a court order it doesn’t mean the mother will follow the law. And you can take her to court for contempt but what do they do but say your in contempt set up arrangements. And the sad part is these mothers are hurting their children for their own vengful sick satisfaction. They manipulate the kids and tell them bad things about Dad when Dad is the one paying the bills and then they are told that "Dad doesn’t pay enough"
OMG the woman get’s more a month then I use to make! $1265 in support PLUS 62% what insurance doesn’t cover and yet she mentally and emotionaly abuses her own children by making them believe that they are not loved or wanted or cared for by their father
And how do you show the opposite to the kids when she won’t allow them to talk on the phone and skips around visitaion and even Prepares the children and ASKS them to tell the Judge they don’t want to see Dad…It’s just sick sick sick and the kids are caught in the middle. We are CONSTANTLY driving to N.C. because she keeps taking him back to court and Dad ALLWAYS gets screwed ALLWAYS! and THe kids are getting screwed to. She actually owes him money. She is in contempt…so what good would it really do him and his kids to have her arrested for for forgery, theft and fraud like she should be. HIS kids WOULD HATE him for that and NEVER listen to the truth! Good Dads who do everything they can do paying more then half their income to the mom and praying everyday just to be able to love their kids…well they are just SOL in the court system…granted it’s all set up FOR the mom because of all the dead beats BUT come on NOT ALL of them are! These moms should be brought up on charges on mentally and emotionaly abusing their children because that is exactly what is going on here. OMG when my parents divorced the abandonment issues I suffered were bad enough I just simply couldn’t imagine what goes on in their little heads and hearts and mom drills into them that they are not loved and wanted by their fathers. There should REALLY be a law…no strike that there is a law, they are in contempt
There should REALLY be a PUNISHMENT for this kind of evilness!

My ex is denying me my christmas visitation rights to my children. I can not file any paperwork yet because the change of venue From Florida to North Carolina has not been processed yet. She states that she is afraid that I will not return them to her if I get them. I have never not returned them before. She states that my oldest child was diagnosed with an ulcer and that it is all my fault because I took her to court in Florida a few days ago. When I called up the doctors office the office manager verified that my child was seen october 12th. The doctor’s office had not submitted the claim through my insurance evn though I had provided them with the information. I do not believe that the ulcer was caused by the court issues, but by her mother as I had no contact with my children in October, and had not talked to them since they left my home in August. My ex says that she has a psychiatrist that has seen the children but she will not give me the name of this psychiatrist when I ask. She has had the children make up stories to a psychologist before in order to get my visitation revoked, and I am afraid that she is doing so again. Last time the psychiatrist withdrew from her case when I had presented evidence that contradicted her claims, but it took a very long time, and was very costly to me because I had to get my own psychologist to have sessions with my new wife, step kids, and myself just to prove that her allegations of sexual abuse were falsley claimed. What can I do to make sure that I get my kids for christmas? I believe that my ex is hiding something that she does not want me to kno and she knows that the children will tell me once they get with me and are away from her and her husband. I feel that they may have been punished when I returned them to her this summer for telling me about the moving and abuse that was going on in her home. The children were all afraid to go back, but because I had to return them I had no choice. I had no proof of their claims, and still can not prove anything because I can not send an officer or a social worker to her house since I do not have a physical address for her. If I do not see my kids for christmas then I will not get the opportunity to see them again until July. Please give me some advice?

Todd Zimmerman