Originally Posted by GalaGirl
To me? If it is not a "joyful yes" because....
"no" is not a "joyful yes"
a "maybe" is not a "joyful yes"
an "I'm not sure if it is maybe" is not a "joyful yes."
It is a NO vote. Anything "less than" joyful yes is not joyful yes.
Could not RUSH into life changing decisions after just getting the kerfuffle settled back down.
Could investigate the law further before the move -- Snowflake is NOT a step parent (legally) because she is not married to your wife. You are. What's the legal standing on that? What are the rights then?
It's a valid concern given recent history. Are you going to be held to something against your will if they apply without you? Can it be accepted?
Does that affect your decision to move there if you would now be under this other country's laws?
I was able to read the law and all the sections, and I also asked for verbal clarification. I called the family court in Melbourne. It was explained to me in great detail. Initially, it was designed for step-parents who wanted legal rights without one of the biological parents having to waive their rights in order to make it happen. There is nothing expressly forbidding this from being approved.
These orders are very common with a lot of families. Not only with step-kids. If my best mate had a hand in raising my kids and was an integral part of their lives, and it could be proved, he could be granted one of these orders. Step-parent adoption isn't common in Australia unless the biological parent is deceased, so they have something in place to enable biological parents and another person to consent to raising a child together via co-parenting with this order. Hence the name of the agreement: Consent Order. This could be their nanny, a sibling, grandparents, or anyone who is helping to raise them, is "significant to their care, welfare, and development."
The part about an application being submitted with or without one of the parents' consent is a problem and a concern considering our history. It's not even rushing into it. This wasn't even a thought in my brain. It was mentioned by a mate, and it prompted me to think. I'm beginning to think it was more of a warning than suggestion from my mate. If things hadn't changed, she probably would've started the process without me. I'm not paranoid, but I know how she is. Those old habits aren't completely dead and buried.
Could it be approved without me? There's a high probability. Unless I can prove that her ex not significant to their care, well-being, or development, it would probably get done. How would I prove that? She's not not unfit to my knowledge. She's never abused them. An interview with my kid would probably prove that she's significant. With orders of these kind, they do what's in the best interest of the kids. I would likely end up having to fight them in court to have this overturned.
It doesn't change my mind about moving there, but I've often agreed with people when they say that ignorance of the law is no excuse. I appreciate the heads up. I don't think my Mrs. would do anything this underhanded, but I have to admit. I have concerns now. She's always viewed her ex as an equal co-parent, and this is probably just what she's been waiting to get her hands on.