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Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Court: Another Chapter Closed

The night before court I was not stressed as I had been the last two times: once, getting Danny back into my custody and the second, the final hearing about Danny's custody- both of which I won. Last night, I was calm and I slept very well. Michael and I arrived at the courthouse and waited for our attorney. Today, ex had to face Contempt of Court charges for being $4080.00 in arrears for Danny's schooling last school year.

After almost two years of manipulation, lies, deception, harassment- everything was going to be settled. It was a day of relief. When Ex appeared he was alone, his entourage of his father, his wife's mother and father and his wife was no where to be found. He was dressed in a suit and skateboard sneakers with no paperwork, no sign of preparation to defend himself as he was "Pro Se", acting as his own attorney.

He rolled his eyes when he saw me sitting on the bench outside the courthouse, arranging papers in the two binders I had brought. I was prepared. His past exclamations of "you agreed I didn't have to pay" were gone, whispers in the past along with his claims that he had not only paid what he was supposed to but gone above and beyond.

Not very long ago his wife wrote this on the forum she participates on (copy and pasted directly):

"1.) She tried to say we were in arrears of child support by $4000! Of course, we had anticipated ANYTHING and EVERYTHING, so we had proof that not only was Mike up-to-date on CS, but he's gone well beyond what he "has" to pay."
We entered the courtroom as the bailiff allowed and sat to wait. My attorney arrived moments before court started and as the Judge was going through the cases, our attorney stated that there could be a settlement if able to meet with the parties.

Ex had tried to settle his $4080.00 arrears with $1021.00- a nice dog and pony show manipulating numbers to reflect a lower settlement because he wants the child support modified and wanted to leverage the fact he would get the child support modified at a later date. I told my attorney that the arrears and child support modification are two different issues that shouldn't be mixed and he needs to pay what he should have in the first place-the amount he willingly signed legal documents stating he would pay but refused to when it came time to man up. Just last month in the final hearing he testified that he had $4000.00 sitting in an account and he'd be glad to give me the money if he could have custody of Danny.

He was faced with a choice, accept my offer to pay the $4080.00 over 12 (gracious) months or wait to hear the court's decision on when it would have to be paid (the longest being 180 days) plus pay for my legal fees for the action. He chose the gracious offer and we stood before the Judge to have the settlement entered into record. Either way, I walked out with a JUDGMENT of Contempt on record!!!

Sorry, I have's just itching to get out...

Maybe not the 'world' but I'll settle for court cases against my ex any day. I don't really feel celebratory, more like, Yep, could have told you- oh wait, I DID tell you.

Unfortunately it's still a sad situation. His contempt for me continues, I don't know if he'll ever allow himself to let that go, so much anger directed at me. He's not communicating with me unless he absolutely has to. The information is still one-sided, me telling him things.

While I am happy that he's FINALLY being held accountable, it was sad to see him there all alone without the entourage of support he's used to. It must have been hard for him to stand alone, to eat his just desserts. The playing field has been leveled. The co-conspirators had hung their hats.

Taking me to court instead of talking to me will cost you about $10,000.00, unless you're in arrears, then it'll be closer to 14K. Luckily for ex, his Dad and his wife's parents came to his financial rescue, who knows if they expect him to pay it back, probably not- he's charmed that way. I've never seen one person given so much that he didn't have to work or pay for. I just pray that Danny isn't influenced by this trait of his, that Danny learns true responsibility and the value of earning what you have or want.

I know a modification of support is coming, I'm fine with it- I've always been fine with it- truth is truth is truth. Let's see if he handles it contemptuously or if he tries to work it out amicably with me.