Hey Everybody, Marcus here,
Within our community we spend a lot of time discoursing about things that have either taken place in the past or the speculations we have for the future as to the plight of men. Yet it is not as often we speak of the present in a concrete manner.
I have a request for you my listeners. I need your advice, wisdom, and experience; the sort of advice, wisdom, and experience that can only come from a community of relationship and divorce veterans like MGTOW. I have a friend who is currently in the midst of a divorce. His wife has kidnapped their son and moved to Ontario, Canada. My friend is not a blue piller; at least not for some times now. I red pilled him soon after I met him but by then he was already married and had a son. As such, this is not a plea to help a cuck who, after this is all done, will be lining up to get onto the plantation.
Let us call my friend Anthony. Anthony is in his mid-40s.
What I want to do is read out to you a letter that was sent to Anthony by a law firm he employed to help audit the first law firm’s representation of his person in this case. Yes, my friend has 2 separate law firms he is leveraging because he is aware of rampant collusion between opposing counsel. The letter I will read out will have all names altered as well as Geography. However, Anthony’s wife did indeed kidnap his son and fled to Ontario, Canada. That location is true. I leave the location of Ontario, Canada in place because there may be some Ontario lawyers listening who can give their own opinion on the situation.
The questions before you are these; what would you do in Anthony’s situation? Would you abandon all hope, cut your losses and move on? Or would you fight on with what seems like certain defeat and an ever-increasing legal bill?
The letter from the lawyer reads as follows.
Dear Mr. Anthony,
This letter is our opinion to you on the status of your court proceeding bearing court file no. ABCD123.
As you are aware, on April 01, 2017 Mrs. Anthony commenced an Application at the Superior Court of Justice in Ontario for, among other things, a divorce and sole custody of Anthony Jr. born on October 01, 2014.
Mr. Anthony responded by way of an Answer dated July 01, 2017. In his Answer Mr. Anthony seeks an Order for sole custody of Anthony Jr., an Order for the immediate return of Anthony Jr. to his care in the UK, and Orders for access, child support and costs.
According to the Answer, the parties were married in Italy on June 01, 2013 and Anthony Jr. was born on October 01, 2014 in France. The family relocated from France to Italy on May 01, 2015.
On September 01, 2015 Mrs. Anthony requested that Mr. Anthony provide her with two letters of consent, one for her to obtain a Romanian passport for Anthony Jr., and the second to allow her to travel with Anthony Jr. outside of Romania. Mr. Anthony provided Mrs. Anthony with both consents.
Mr. Anthony had a project in London, England and Mrs. Anthony and Anthony Jr. joined him there on October 01, 2015. The parties leased an apartment for 12 months in London and had hoped to remain there indefinitely.
Mr. Anthony encouraged Mrs. Anthony to visit her family in Ontario on account of Mrs. Anthony suffering from severe post-partum depression. On April 01, 2016 Mrs. Anthony and Anthony Jr. left the UK and travelled to Ontario.
Mr. Anthony consented to Anthony Jr. travelling with Mrs. Anthony to Ontario temporarily and not permanently. The trip was supposed to help Mrs. Anthony recuperate amongst supportive and familiar family and friends. A travel consent was not signed. Mr. Anthony believed that Mrs. Anthony was visiting her family for one to two months. Mrs. Anthony now takes the position that her move to Ontario was permanent and that Mr. Anthony was aware of this and even encouraged it.
After Mrs. Anthony came to Ontario with Anthony Jr., Mr. Anthony came to join them on a family holiday. The parties stayed together for a number of days in a hotel in Ontario and then for a further week with Mrs. Anthony’s parents in Ontario. Mrs. Anthony informed Mr. Anthony that she would stay in Ontario for an additional month and Mr. Anthony agreed to that extension, and returned to the UK to resume his work.
Mr. Anthony visited Mrs. Anthony and Anthony in Canada in May 2016, October 2016 and May 2017.
The most immediate issue that needs to be addressed is that while Mr. Anthony submitted an Application pursuant to the Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction (the “Hague Convention”) to the Central Authority in the UK, which was then passed on to the Central Authority in Ontario, a Hague Convention Application was not commenced in the Ontario courts.
Mr. Anthony’s Answer primarily deals with custody and access issues and while it does request the return of Anthony Jr. to the UK it does not plead the articles of the Hague Convention, or seek any of the other relief that is sought in a Hague Application, such as an expedited hearing, restriction of travel outside of the jurisdiction, seizure of passports, etc.
Mr. Anthony currently has two options. The first is to start a Hague Convention Application and seek a stay of the Application started by Mrs. Anthony until the Hague Convention Application is disposed of.
The main obstacle to commencing the Hague Convention Application at this time, is that more than 20 months have elapsed since Mrs. Anthony and Anthony Jr. left the UK for Canada. This would likely put the Hague Convention Application outside of the one year window during which these types of applications must be commenced. Article 12 of the Hague Convention provides for an automatic return procedure to the country of the child’s habitual residence where the court proceedings for the return of the child have been commenced within one year from the wrongful removal or retention. One of the main exceptions to the automatic return procedure, is the so called “settled in” exception. It is only available to parties “where proceedings have been commenced after the expiration of the period of one year”. Article 12 provides that a child should still be returned to his or her habitual residence in those circumstances “unless it is demonstrated that the child is now settled in its new environment.”
If a Hague Convention Application is commenced within a year the Court generally does not apply the “best interest of the child” test. Once there is a determination of where the child’s habitual residence is, and there is a determination that there has been a wrongful removal or retention, the Court automatically sends the child back to his or her habitual residence. However, if the Article 12 “settled in” exception applies the Court will consider the “best interests of the child” in determining whether the child has settled in to his new environment or not.
There are several relevant sub-issues. Assuming that Mr. Anthony can establish that there was in fact a wrongful retention or wrongful removal, which is a fact based inquiry, it is not clear what the date of the alleged wrongful removal or retention would be. Establishing the date of the wrongful retention would be complicated by the fact that there is no written travel consent with a specific expiry date for the trip to Ontario. Mr. Anthony’s Answer states that he believed the trip to Ontario was for one to two months. If this was accepted by the Court then the wrongful retention would have begun on approximately June 01, 2016. If that was the date of wrongful retention then commencing a Hague Application now would still be outside of the one year window.
If Mr. Anthony is outside of the one year window for a Hague Application then the Court in Ontario would consider the degree to which Anthony Jr. has settled in to his environment in Ontario. The court would consider Anthony Jr.’s routine, daycare, extracurricular activities, contacts with his grandparents and other facts to determine whether or not Anthony Jr. is now settled in.
Given that Anthony Jr. is 41 months old and has spent his last 20 months in Ontario there is a substantial likelihood that a Court in Ontario would find that he has settled in to his environment in Ontario and does not have to be sent back to the UK pursuant to the Hague Convention.
If the Hague Convention Application was dismissed, the Court would then hear the family law application in which both parties are seeking custody of Anthony Jr.
The second option Mr. Anthony has is to amend his Answer to plead the Hague Convention and seek a stay of the family law issues until the disposition of the Hague Convention issue. However, the Court would likely consider the date of the Amended Answer as the date that Mr. Anthony’s Hague Convention application was commenced, which would again put him outside of the one year period during which the mandatory return mechanism is applicable.
Even in the unlikely event that the Court accepted that the date of the original Answer, being July 01, 2017, is the date on which his Hague Convention Application was commenced, it would still put Mr. Anthony outside of the one year period during which the mandatory return procedure is applicable. As a result, it is likely that the Court would consider Anthony Jr.’s life in Ontario and conclude that he has become settled and does not need to be returned to the UK.
In our view it is preferable to commence a fresh Hague Convention Application in Ontario, rather than amend the Answer to turn it into a Hague Convention Application. There are potential drawbacks and advantages to both approaches. However, it appears that under either approach the Article 12 “settled in” exception would apply to the facts of this case. It is of course not possible to predict whose version of the facts the Court will accept, however, the Court will be concerned about the length of time that Anthony Jr. has now spent in Canada and there is a substantial likelihood that it would rely on the Article 12 exception to decline a return to the UK.
Given the delay that has occurred, the outcome of a Hague application will be uncertain. The decision to commence such a proceeding rather than just amend the existing proceeding is certainly not a clear decision but it is my opinion that your opportunities of success in the Hague matter would be greatly diminished by simply amending the current application.
Expensive Law Firm In Ontario
Well, there you go guys. I think that the letter sufficiently describes what Anthony is faced with. This is the legal advice of the oversight law firm. What I would like is for the MGTOW community to put their own experiences and advice forward. At this stage I think that the MGTOW community has a breadth of insights into both the legal drama but also the emotional and financial drama that is involved in such a battle. If you are a father who was in a similar situation, who gave up fighting and regrets it then speak up. If you are a father who did fight such a fight and won speak up. If you lost, speak up to. If you are a family law lawyer in Canada and know of some tricks that Anthony’s lawyers are not pulling then speak up.
Ultimately the decision Anthony is facing is to either fight this, which can potentially take years to resolve, end up with a mostly alienated child, and cost who know what, or give up now and count it as one of those shit hands life deals you. Keep in mind that the court case is handled in Ontario and Anthony does not live in Canada.
And if for no other video I have made before, my sign off is most relevant here,