Thank you, L.
There is nothing that needs to be done about the ex parte
. What the ex-parte was is an "emergency" petition to be heard at time of filing to gain custody. With you being in jail, he took advantage of it and filed it, getting emergency custody. That ex-parte order for him getting custody is going to be re-heard
on Aug. 22, and either upheld, modified, or reversed.
Custody is based on "best interest of the child
." Herndon v. Tuhey, 857 SW 2d 203 - Mo: Supreme Court 1993
. That is the rule of thumb of the Court and how the Judge will see the case. To make yourself the most presentable as a custodian, one must play on the following subjective factors by which the Court will determine this best interest of the child, which are:
(1) The wishes of the child’s parents as to custody and the proposed parenting plan
submitted by both parties;
(2) The needs of the child for a frequent, continuing and meaningful relationship with both parents and the ability and willingness of parents to actively perform their functions as mother and father for the needs of the child;
(3) The interaction and interrelationship of the child with parents, siblings, and any other person who may significantly affect the child’s best interests;
(4) Which parent is more likely to allow the child frequent, continuing and meaningful contact with the other parent;
(5) The child’s adjustment to the child’s home, school, and community;
(6) The mental and physical health of all individuals involved;
(7) The intention of either parent to relocate the principal residence of the child; and
(8) The wishes of a child as to the child’s parents. (Missouri Statutes - Title 30 - Chapter 452 - Sections: 375 and 400)
So what someone in your situation wants to do is to play up these factors for yourself, while simultaneously attacking him by stating and showing that he lacks these factors. Stability. Home environment. Plans for the future. These are important factors.
If finances are an issue to retain counsel, I can recommend three resources. First, here is a list of all pro bono work in the state...http://www.abanet.org/legalservices/probono/directory/missouri.html
…and another list:http://www.lawhelp.org
Finally, you may call your local law school and see if they have a legal clinic place available. The legal clinic is a free service the school(s) provide to the community. While they are often overbooked, they have openings sometimes. Here is the list law schools in your state:http://www.hg.org/law-schools-missouri.asp
Hopefully, this may help.
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