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Ordeal is over!

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What is the name of your state? Fl This isn't a question but a bit of hope. I had court on Wed 2-19 and settled my case. This had been going on since March 2002, my ex was trying to get CS reduced as children turned 18, I was trying to collect her 50% of medical expenses. I had been paying doctor, dentist and ortho bills since 96, just assuming that eventually I would get paid back. Her lawyer did everything she could to not pay those bills, total I was looking for was about $1500. First hearing in May, she asked for more time to review my bills. Second hearing in July, asked to have bills itemized by provider, they had been grouped by year. Third hearing in Nov, agreed to pay "medical expenses" but not expenses for dentist or ortho. My final says parties will each pay "50% of uncovered medical expenses". I argued that medical doesn't exclude dental. My final was poorly written, should have said "medical, dental and ortho". So Judge P gives both sides 5 days to submit cases, I did that but my ex's attorney did not. Judge P rules in my favor, kids needed care, dad took care of it, mom needs to pay, cited my cases. Ex appealed. Ex asks Judge P for rehearing, denied. Multiple motions flying around. Jan 10, another hearing, new judge, tells me right away that she is friendly with ex's attorney, do I have a problem with that? I say no. Stipulate to statements of Nov hearing, etc. Another motion to rehear is set for Feb 19. I'm nervous because judge L has already told me she's tight with ex's lawyer, I'm loaded for bear, tons of evidence and documentation. But Judge L refuses to rehear case, says "Judge P ruled, denied rehearing. I'm sure not going to rehear his case. Plus you've appealed, I don't have jurisdiction. Father has spent some money on the kids, he needs to get paid, why not just pay him?" (In other words, is this really a hill you want to die on? Thanks, momma_tiger!)

So ex decided to drop the appeal and just pay it. I'm still in shock! I feel like a weight has been taken off, and I have faith in the legal system again. It took time but justice prevailed. Had my doubts for a while. So hang in there, people! Pro se can win.
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Rldunc said:
I feel like a weight has been taken off, and I have faith in the legal system again. It took time but justice prevailed. Had my doubts for a while. So hang in there, people! Pro se can win.
Yes, the wheels of justice grind slowly but justice is eventually grinded out. Congratulations on getting out from under the mill. :D


Well. I learned a couple lessons out of it. If you're going to hire an attorney, hire a good one. I had a lawyer in 96-98 up to the final, and she made mistakes. She did communicate with me when I needed to vent or needed my hand held. And I was going for custody and you don't want to play around with that. But my final was just a generic form, nothing was spelled out, and that caused the problems later. You want everything spelled out and spellchecked, all the issues need to be brought up-to-date. I lost some arrears and some medical because they were not "preserved" by the final judgment. I found out "if it's not in the final, it's gone". I can live with that.

In an ugly divorce, the last battle can be worse than the first one. After several years of peace and halfhearted cooperation, when it's time to end the child support and get caught up with medical payments, it can be downright hairy. She started this one, she wanted support to end and tried to get out of paying her half of the medical. I had sent her bills every quarter and we discussed the children's care, but all of a sudden she got amnesia. I tried to stipulate with her and then with her attorney that it could be a "wash", they wanted to fight it. I estimate that it cost my ex $5K or more to battle $1100 in medical bills. I've got around a hundred in copies, stamps and filing fees. What a waste and talk about picking a poor battle. Both judges were annoyed that a parent would refuse to reimburse the other parent for money he spent on the children. Without any good reason. Lessons, don't be petty and what's best for kids, wins.

Thanks for all the support and kind words, I plan to hang around here and post occasionally.
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