From a distraught father:
Recently, the maternal and paternal rights of our children have come under attack. We left them with their paternal grandfather, under the presumption that his intention was to care for them, until we could do so ourselves. Things took a turn for the worse, very quickly. Their grandfather systematically removed both parents, as well as their paternal grandmother, from the children’s lives. He cut phone calls to one per week, then none at all. He would not disclose their address, blocked emails, and blocked contact through social media. About the time that mother and father were clean, stable, and ready to fight, we were caught off guard with a notice that we were being sued for our parental rights. He alleged that we dropped them off with no intention of return, did not reach out to them, and that their father’s incarceration was willful abandonment. These allegations are in no way true. We always had the intention of returning, and the grandfather led us to believe that his interests and ours were aligned.
We weren’t allowed contact, but still reached out on a regular basis. The father was, in fact, incarcerated, which is one of the things that led to him getting his life together. The mother entered into drug rehabilitation almost two years ago, and has worked very hard to remain on the right track. Both parents have cleaned up, and become productive members of society. The paternal grandmother has never had drug problems or legal issues, and is a well respected member of her community. She was caught in the crossfire because of a divorce between the two, in which the paternal grandfather had multiple counts of infidelity. As a result of the fact that she was unable to look past everything that had transpired, she is being denied access, as well.
We plan to fight, with all we have, but the court proceedings have proven to be very costly. Each party has to pay for attorneys and legal fees. Something like this could end up costing anywhere from $5000 to $10,000. The most pressing issue is that we have two weeks to come up with $1500 to $2000 to file a document with the court that MUST be filed, in order for us to have a fighting chance. We have already spent all we have on retainers, drug tests, other legal fees, and travel to the state where the children reside. Each drug test costs $300 because of the type of test that was requested, and the results are being held at the testing facility until we can pay the full amount. Our income is very small, near minimum wage. We are working hard to come up with the money we need, but we are limited on time, and we are in need of help. The paternal grandfather is very wealthy, and we can’t allow him to take our children, just because we don’t have the funds to fight
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