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My son refused to move from Michigan to NC with me. I have…

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My son refused to...

My son refused to move from Michigan to NC with me . I have primary custody, and he is 17. My father has agreed to allow him to live with him in Michigan and finish high school there. His dad However wants to change custody to him, but he also lives in North Carolina. My son refused to move in with his dad as well. He even has called the police and they have explained that they won't force anyone that is 17 to go anywhere. Therefore he has stayed in Michigan, and his dad has filed for a custody hearing.

Lawyer's Assistant: Because education law varies from place to place, can you tell me what state this is in?

Michigan

Lawyer's Assistant: Have you talked to a lawyer yet?

No.

Lawyer's Assistant: Anything else you want the lawyer to know before I connect you?

I apparently have no legal way to force him to move at 17 in Michigan ,and have arranged a safe , supportive environment for him. Legally, what can I be liable for?

Submitted: 9 months ago.Category: Family Law
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10/19/2017
Family Lawyer: DamienJD, Attorney replied 9 months ago
DamienJD
DamienJD, Attorney
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 5,093
Experience: Attorney. Well versed, understanding, friendly
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Hello: My name is ***** ***** I am an attorney. Please give me a moment to review your question. I may ask some questions to clarify issues.

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Family Lawyer: DamienJD, Attorney replied 9 months ago

You won't be liable for anything. I presume a Michigan court issued the primary custody to you. Is this new hearing in Michigan or North Carolina? Will you be appearing?

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Customer reply replied 9 months ago
It is in Michigan and I will be appearing by phone.
Family Lawyer: DamienJD, Attorney replied 9 months ago

At the hearing, the court may appoint a law guardian for your son to see what your son wants. The law guardian would interview your son and make a report. Your son is old enough now that the court will want to hear what he has to say. Even if the court does not appoint a law guardian, the Judge will want to know what your son wants. We can continue to discuss this if you want to do so.

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Customer reply replied 9 months ago
I was awarded primary custody in 2004. I tried to convince my son to move with either his dad or I , but he refused . He also called law enforcement and had them explain to me that they will not intervene.
Family Lawyer: DamienJD, Attorney replied 9 months ago

I understand. See my last response above. Let me knew if you have further questions.

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Customer reply replied 9 months ago
At the hearing regarding custody , is there something specific I should request like the judge to speak with my son before a final.decision is made?
Family Lawyer: DamienJD, Attorney replied 9 months ago

Yes. Most likely the Judge will want to speak with your son or have a guardian appointed without you needing to ask. So, requesting the Judge to speak with your son is something that would be fine to do. We can continue to discuss if you would like to do so.

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Customer reply replied 9 months ago
My son is being treated for depression and ADHD, his father is trying to say he is not mentally able to make this choice. I do not agree, my son did a lot of research and involved law enforcement. He does seem very capable of making this choice. I want to make that clear to the judge if his father tries make this argument.
Family Lawyer: DamienJD, Attorney replied 9 months ago

Yes. You can make that argument. As I mentioned, most likely the Judge would appoint a guardian or request a court evaluation of your son to determine if he can make decisions or to hear what he wants. It could be a good idea for your Father to attend the hearing as a witness. And your son to do so also. We can continue to discuss if you want to do so.

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Customer reply replied 9 months ago
If the judge orders custody to change to his father in North Carolina, but law enforcement continues to refuse to intervene am I legally liable for him not moving? My ex continues to insist I force him to move, but I have no ability to force this to happen.
Family Lawyer: DamienJD, Attorney replied 9 months ago

No. You are not legally liable. You cannot force him to move. The Judge would have to order the Police to do it, which is unlikely. The Judge would want to speak with your Father if you want your son to stay with the Father. If the Judge orders the son to live with his Father, and the son refuses to go, you would not be held liable. Always remember to argue for the "best interest of the child - what is best for him." We can continue to discuss if you want to do so.

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Customer reply replied 9 months ago
Ok. I understand. I will try to stick with the idea that a safe, stable environment with my dad is in his best interest. Am I legally supposed to pay my dad child support? I have an informal agreement regarding helping him to meet my son's needs. Nothing official.
Family Lawyer: DamienJD, Attorney replied 9 months ago

Good idea. I am not sure if the Judge will order payment of child support to your Father. I would imagine that it could be worked out one way or another through the Judge's order or through your agreement, possibly should be in writing. If you have further questions, just let me know.

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Customer reply replied 9 months ago
Ok. Last question, should I refrain from stating MI law regarding the autonomous nature of 17 year olds? I do not want to appear like I am an expert, but have researched the law .
Family Lawyer: DamienJD, Attorney replied 9 months ago

It's better to stick the facts and not argue the law. If anything, just keep to what is in the best interest of the child.

If you have further questions, just let me know. Otherwise, I have been happy to help you.

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Family Lawyer: DamienJD, Attorney replied 8 months ago

Hello again! Checking in to see if you need further help. Your satisfaction is my goal, and I'm happy to answer a related follow-up question you may have. If I have not answered your question completely or missed a question, please let me know and I will attempt to answer it. If you are satisfied with your answer, please provide a positive rating between 3 and 5 stars so I can get paid for the service I provided to you. Best regards.

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