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Law Educator, Esq.
Law Educator, Esq., Lawyer
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 111659
Experience:  Experienced attorney: Family law, Estate Law, SS Law etc.
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I have a change of state custody question. for Wisconsin law.

Customer Question

I have a change of state custody question. for Wisconsin law. I think the guardian ad litem is just being lazy as all his decisions are status qua regardless of the facts I bring to court. He did not interview the children until 4 days before court. This past year they were with dad for school year and absent 10 times each, and late 33 times each. He refuses to allow their older sister (22 years old) to have any unsupervised by him visitation. He doesn't follow the 30 day notice so I can see the children rule during the school year. etc.

ANYWAY my husband pointed out an irregularity in our final divorce decree.

Unlike normal, where the parent requesting the move has to prove why its in the best interest of the children, my Divorce states ::

'Under this paragraph, the burden of proof is on the parent objecting to the move or removal.'

I have tried to point this out to the GAL, who just ignores me and makes no mention of it. However in COURT the GAL has stated, the burden of proof is on the parent requesting the move. My understanding is the Divorce decree states its on the objector, and that's what the court should be setting the burden on.

I can post whatever info you need from the divorce papers as needed!
Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 4 years ago.
We actually hear this complaint frequently about the GAL not wanting to change custody matters. Most of the court GAL's are overworked and really disinterested in just about everything except their own agenda. I cannot believe a court would allow a GAL to get away with misrepresenting what your court order states with regards to this move and it would be up to you to point out to the judge that the GAL is misrepresenting what your court order says and the court order you have says the party objecting to the move has the burden of proof.

The courts in agreeing to changes in custody, and thus change of the status quo, require a proof by evidence of a significant change in circumstances such that the change is warranted in the best interests of the children. You do not say if you are represented by an attorney in this, but if you are not this makes a big difference because many times pro se parties may have boxes of evidence supporting their position, but they fail to properly introduce it the court cannot consider that evidence legally.

Generally, if you can show lack of school attendance, loss of stable residence those are grounds showing significant change sufficient for a court to rule to change custody and we cannot evaluate your actual evidence here, but if it was presented properly to the court in accordance with the rules of evidence and rules of civil procedure, then these are generally legitimate good cause reasons for a court to change custody and allow the move out of state as well..


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