What is the name of your state (only U.S. law)? TEXAS
My story is this: I have been divorced from my ex for 2 and 1/2 years, and we shared joint conservatorship, with me having exclusive rights to determine her domicile, WITH NO GEOGRAPHICAL RESTRICTIONS. Prior to the divorce, I had applied for graduate schools overseas, and this was the reason for having this stipulation in there. However, when the time came for me to get my daughter a passport her dad refused to sign. He waited until the last minute before leaving for Iraq to let me know he was not signing it. Hence, my school was starting in October. It was my 2nd time rejecting my acceptance and knew that time was running out, so I hired an attorney to help me get the passport and also get the marital property (house) out of my name. I then gave my neighbor power of attorney and temporary guardianship for my daughter for 2 months, until I came back from London for Christmas break. However, still no passport. My neighbor could not longer keep her, considering both of us thought it would be just for those two months, so I had to send her to my mothers. My ex finally signed the passport paperwork in February after my daughter begged him to sign. I flew back to Washington to pick my daughter up, she came back here to London with me, and was attending school. Her dad came back from his tour of duty in Iraq in June and July my daughter went back to Texas to visit. Well, now she has decided to stay with him for the school year. I have no problem with this, however, he coerced her into signing an affidavit stating she wants to live with him, thinking it was only for the school year. He has filed for sole custody of her, and a restraining order against me. In his affidavit, he has made it seem like I am this outraged mother who just on a whim decided to sell all my belongings and move to London. Never mentioned I was in school, nor that he refused to sign the paperwork. The attorney that I have, has not done anything pertaining to the issues and I am at my wits end. Every thing I have ever tried to do to better myself or to free up some financial debt, he has stopped, and has not been cooperative. I am suppose to go to court on the 5th of October, however, I am in school and cannot miss anytime, or else I get dropped. Is there anyway I can write a letter to the judge explaining my situation to him? The divorce was not favorable for me, due to me not being able to afford representation. We were married for 14 years, and I basically walked away with nothing. I am not in a situation where I can afford an attorney and risk the chance of losing my child. Please any advice would be helpful. He has violated every avenue of the divorce order, yet knows I could never afford to take him back to court. My daughter is 13 almost 14 and I know she can determine who she wants to live with. Her father is re-married to the lady he had he affair with, and that does not matter for I just wish the best for them. But they have had physical altercations and my daughter got caught in the middle. He has been physically abusive in the past and I do have police records to prove this. I in no way want to be ugly, however, I am tired of always being the one left with nothing. He took out money towards his military retirement after 15 years which is called a REDUX, and he never gave me a penny even when the court order stated he could not do this. There are so many issues that he has violated but because I never have the money to fight him in court, I never pursue it. Please any tips or advice is appreciated.