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Posted: 9/13/2010 9:17:48 PM EDT
My girlfriend and I split up recently, and she is not letting me see my little 22 month old daughter. It's driving me crazy to be denied access to my child. On top of it, she has some serious substance abuse problems which definitely affect her care of my daughter. Her "problems" that she refuses to acknowledge or get help for are the reason we split. If anyone knows of a quality (affordable) child custody or dad's right attorney, that would be extremely helpful and much appreciated. Thank you.
Link Posted: 9/13/2010 11:28:37 PM EDT
Knowing where you are and what county you live in would be helpful to get you the right kind of lawyer. I wish you luck, it won't be easy in this state. I have one of my three kids and am working on getting the youngest home next.
Link Posted: 9/14/2010 4:56:58 AM EDT
I'm in the La Grange area right where 294 and 55 intersect. An attorney in eastern Dupage or southwest Cook county would be great. I'm definitely not going to limit my choice for an lawyer though based on geographical area (well maybe somewhat). I'll travel up to an hour one way if need be. Thank you.
Link Posted: 9/14/2010 5:42:19 AM EDT
Do your homework. Hire a lawyer that is close to the courthouse (and most likely in the "circle" of the judge).

Don't be afraid to spend on the attorney. You do generally get what you pay for.
Link Posted: 9/14/2010 8:01:29 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 9/14/2010 8:02:51 AM EDT by Roadhawk]
Link Posted: 9/14/2010 8:38:59 AM EDT
Originally Posted By Roadhawk:
Call Jeffery Leving's office and ask for a referral. Leving wrote a book about father's rights.

www.dadsrights.com

Posted Via AR15.Com Mobile


He not only wrote a book, but he helped write the laws for father's rights. He would be a good option for you if you are going to file in Cook county, but they are located in the city. I would do as Roadhawk said and get a referal for your area/county.
Link Posted: 9/14/2010 12:10:17 PM EDT
Originally Posted By Roadhawk:
Call Jeffery Leving's office and ask for a referral. Leving wrote a book about father's rights.

www.dadsrights.com

Posted Via AR15.Com Mobile


this guy.
good luck.
Link Posted: 9/14/2010 12:58:10 PM EDT
Looks like I will be giving Mr.Leving a call. Thank you guys for your time and help.
Link Posted: 9/14/2010 3:59:21 PM EDT
Originally Posted By Roadhawk:
Call Jeffery Leving's office and ask for a referral. Leving wrote a book about father's rights.

www.dadsrights.com

Posted Via AR15.Com Mobile


I was just about to come in here and post that same thing.
Link Posted: 9/14/2010 4:42:20 PM EDT
I was looking at Leving's book review on Amazon and came across this review:

38 of 43 people found the following review helpful:
5.0 out of 5 stars TOO BAD THAT THE LAW FIRM DOESN'T PRACTICE WHAT THEY PREACH, September 7, 2000
A Kid's Review
This review is from: Fathers' Rights: Hard-Hitting & Fair Advice for Every Father Involved in a Custody Dispute (Paperback)
I AM NOT 12 YEARS OLD. THE BOOK WAS WONDERFUL. AFTER READING THE BOOK, I RECOMMENDED THE LAW FIRM OF JEFFREY LEVING TO MY SON. HIS FIRST ATTORNEY BILLED HIM $9000 IN FEB 2000. HE NEVER GOT TO EVEN SEE HIS SON FOR OVER 2 MONTHS. HIS SON WAS ONLY 8 MONTHS OLD AT THE TIME. WHEN MY SON HAD HIS COURT APPEARANCES HIS FIRST ATTORNEY FROM THE FIRM NEVER EVEN SHOWED UP. IT WAS NOT UNTIL HE SAW HIS WIFE THERE, THAT HE REALIZED THAT THEY WERE DISCUSSING HIS CASE. ABOUT A MONTH LATER HIS FIRST ATTORNEY FROM THE JEFFREY LEVING LAW FIRM SUDDENLY LEFT THE FIRM. NO EXPLANATION. MY SON THEN STARTED WORKING WITH A NEW ATTORNEY FROM THE FIRM AND PAID ANOTHER $8000. HE FINALLY GOT TO HAVE HIS SON FOR 4 HRS 2 TIMES PER WEEK IN MAY, BUT ONLY BECAUSE OF MEDIATION WITH A THIRD PARTY. MY SON IS A FINE UPSTANDING CITIZEN, HE IS NOT A CRIMINAL, AND HAS NO PSYCHIATRIC HISTORY. IT IS NOW SEPTEMBER. HIS ATTORNEY CALLED HIM LAST EVENING TO REMIND HIM THAT HE WOULD SEE HIM IN COURT. AGAIN, WHEN HE GOT TO THE COURTROOM, A DIFFERENT ATTORNEY FROM THE FIRM WAS THERE, NOT HIS LAWYER HE HAD BEEN DEALING WITH. THE STAND IN ATTORNEY DID NOT INTRODUCE HIMSELF, GIVE HIM A BUSINESS CARD, OR SHAKE HIS HAND. AGAIN, HE REALIZED HE HAD A STAND IN BECAUSE HE SAW HIS WIFE'S ATTORNEY GO BEFORE THE JUDGE. THE JUDGE AWARDED HIS WIFE 40%(WHAT WAS REQUESTED BY HIS WIFE'S ATTORNEY} OF HIS TAKE HOME PAY. NO INCREASE IN VISITATION. AFTER THE RULING, MY SON TOLD THE STAND IN "THAT IS 40% OF MY TAKE HOME PAY" THE STAND IN ATTORNEY FOR THE JEFFREY LEVING FIRM TOLD HIM "TOO BAD YOU WORK FOR YOUR MOTHER, THE NUMBERS CAN BE MANIPULATED TOO EASILY" "YOU ALSO HAVE TO PAY YOUR WIFE'S ATTORNEY $5000 BY THE END OF THE MONTH OR OUR FIRM CAN NO LONGER REPRESENT YOU." I THINK THE FIRM RIDES ON THE NAME AND REPUTATION OF JEFFREY LEVING. I STILL ENDORSE THE BOOK HIGHLY, BUT IN NO WAY WOULD I EVER RECOMMEND SENDING ANY LOVED ONE TO THE FIRM.

Kind of makes me think twice about calling that firm but will do so anyway. i don't understand the title (A Kid's Review) or the first sentence, but it sounds like an honest review, even though it's 10 years old. A referral is a referral though. I'm sure they can point me to a quality lawyer out here in the burbs. F*ck going downtown. The traffic sucks. The book is only $5, gonna order it and see if it helps.

I talked to my ex as well today. Someone must've talked some sense into her as I think she's gonna let me see my daughter, but I still need to step up and try to get full custody as the mom can't even take care of herself.
Link Posted: 9/14/2010 6:26:56 PM EDT
mr. don novelli... westchester

good luck
Link Posted: 9/15/2010 9:33:58 AM EDT
I got custody of my daughter.

Set aside the issue of child support.
I'm considering pressing the issue.
Link Posted: 9/15/2010 10:51:27 AM EDT
Best of luck. Crappy situation
Link Posted: 9/15/2010 3:09:40 PM EDT
Well my ex changed her mind once again. She will not let me see my daughter. She is a puppet and her enabler mother and alcoholic sister are pulling her strings. I haven't talked to a lawyer yet, since my dad was trying to tell me to handle things as civil as possible, and not get

the courts involved unless absolutely necessary. I told him that even though she changed her mind the first time, she'll change it again and renege on our agreement. I'm going to call Mr. Novello tomorrow. A few of my mom's friends are lawyers, but none deal with custody

issues. I need the most shrewd meanest motherfuckin attorney I can find. After what I dealt with today, it's all out war. From my own research so far, anything that can't be proved in court is just hearsay, and will not matter. Anyone can toss out false accusations. My only

ammo is she was hospitalized for taking 60 vicodin in 4 days back in April, and while there, the doctors took blood. She tested positive for marijuana, which is on record. I'm sure my lawyer will be able to dig that up. Nothing was mentioned about her taking the pills because her

mother (whom I hate with a passion) begged me not too. She said she'd get my ex the help she needed. Bullshit! This lady is an enabler, I could tear into their whole family and all their addiction problems (3 daughters and the dad, the moms just nuts) but that would require a

novel. Anyway, getting back on topic, I don't think the vicodin was in her system anymore as she was hospitalized 3 1/2 days after finishing off her supply. From what I've read on the internet, vicodin disappears from your system rather quickly. Besides her testing for positive

for marijuana, there's no way she could pass another drug test if the court ordered us both to take one. That would be strike 2. I'm wondering if that alone would be enough for me to get custody. Also, maybe 4 weeks ago she attacked me while I was holding my daughter.

She punched me 5 times in the arm and then wrapped her hands around my neck. I have her on tape admitting to that, but that wouldn't be admissible I'm guessing. Maybe a good lawyer could get to her admit to that. Only a heated cross examination in the court room would tell.

So, would her failing 2 drug tests this year get me custody of my daughter? On the contrary, I'm no saint either if you look at my past record, but that's what it is, the past. Her lawyer would definitely tear into my criminal record (3 arrests-2000(I'm on the verge of getting this

one sealed), 2001, and 2005 ) and supposedly my massive firearm collection (from what she said). I've done a full 180 in regards to my old ways. I have grown up into a responsible mature law abiding adult who wants nothing more than to provide the best environment

possible for my daughter, be a positive role model for her, finish school and get my BS in IDS, and ultimately, be successful. Anyway, this is just one very fucked up situation. It's hard concentrating on school with this going on, not to mention Pre-Calculus and Accounting are a

bitch. Accounting isn't so bad actually. It's just figuring out where everything goes. I'm going to write down a list of a lot of what I mentioned here and bring it with me when I go see the lawyer. I want their honest opinion and most accurate opinion before I go ahead with trying

to get full custody.
Link Posted: 9/15/2010 3:49:24 PM EDT
First you will need a determination of paternity.
You say its your child and Im sure it is, but the courts are all about proof. You will need to show you have a right to custody.Blood test is in your future. Then you'll need to be paying support.
With child custody , its not enough that you have her appear unfit, you need to also bring your self up.

Went the custody route 25 yrs ago. very expensive, very nasty ordeal.
Link Posted: 9/15/2010 5:35:04 PM EDT
Before doing anything, respect the advice of your lawyer. I delayed following mine, and sure enough my x created a bunch more trouble which cost me a lot of dollars. Custody battles are about power. Really think about how much you want custody. Be ready to give up everything, and then some. If you have nothing to fight over, then she has nothing to hold over you.
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