Guess what? I got a phone call AND an email from my lawyer’s legal assistant. They are FINALLY moving ahead on my case.
I also got the skinny on what’s been going on. They’ve had four lawyers who have left family law practice (or maybe the area) so my attorney, and I’m sure other attorneys as well, got swamped with their active cases.
The good news remains that my case is finally going forward. They are going before a judge on the 18th to get a hearing. The last time we had a separate show cause hearing my lawyer went before the judge in November and our hearing wasn’t set until February. I figure we won’t be back in court until March.
I talked to my attorney’s legal assistant. In a roundabout way I know her personally. Her daughter and my daughter were on the same cheerleading and gymnastics teams. She’s already got it in the pleadings that he moved out of state without informing me or the courts. I’m still waiting to hear about whether or not we’ll be asking for the back support or if we’re going to leave that up to Mississippi. Which brings up the bad news part of the day.
My caseworker emailed me back. The last time we had communicated she had said she was waiting on an email or some sort of notice from Mississippi seeing as how the state computer website is still down. I replied that if there was a number I would be more than happy to call and see what was going on with my case.
Good Lord, you would have thought I volunteered to piss in their Cheerios. I was told in no uncertain terms that I should not do that because this was an interstate case and if I called they could dismiss my case. It’s part of the UIFDA guidelines! Oh my! If only I knew what that was. Apparently it’s a guideline that states you’re not allowed to ask any questions about your own damn case because why on earth would you be concerned about any of that? God forbid you have an interest in your future or your life. Then again, this is the same agency that “can’t tell you” how much your ex-spouse is making because they wouldn’t want you to go into any situation with all the facts.
For those of you not up to date on this saga I was told back in September that I should hear something in 60-90 days. A week or two before what I thought was the 90 day period I asked what exactly I would be hearing and what would happen after that. At that point I was told the state had 60-90 days to review the case, put it into the computer system, and get it to the appropriate county. THEN the county had another 45 days to decide what the fuck they were going to do. What happens after that is anyone’s guess because no one seems to know. And since no one else is being held hostage by Jerry Lee, they really don’t give a fuck. Oh yeah, also the statewide website is down so no one can check up on any progress. Please don’t ask any questions about that, though.
She did let me know that Mississippi received the case on the 26th of September. That’s a little more than 2 weeks after my meeting. She admonished me to remember that they have only had my case for two months. Wow- only two months! How long does it take to get it into the computer and get it to the correct county? Frankly, in this age of electronics I am amazed it takes as long as it does to get this crap done. Only two months? Why not phrase it as, “They’ve had two months!”?
She goes on to inform me that they are not allowed to contact them until Mississippi has had the case for 90 days. She also lets me know she has no timeframe on anything although she presumes a court date will be set within the next 30 days. And she finishes it up with saying she understands that I’m in a rush to get this done but to please give the case additional time.
So, we’re now pushed back to December 26th. At that point the county gets the case. They have an additional 45 days to make a decision. Let’s face it. They always take the full amount of time. Now we’re looking at mid-February. No one knows what happens after the county sets a trial date so maybe we have a trial date set for the end of February. Maybe it won’t be held until April. We don’t know what happens after that either. Is he garnished right away? Does the judge rule right then and there or does he take a month to make his decision? We don’t know. Isn’t it more fun this way?
Maybe I’m an extraordinary employee but when I don’t know the answer to someone’s question I find out. I don’t simply reply, “I don’t know.” If I don’t know I do my best to try to find out. 99% of the time I’m successful. I’m also not dealing with people’s lives. Yet, my caseworker, who cannot give me legal advice, or even tell me what she’s seen in her job apparently, has no problem at all saying, “I don’t know how any of this works,” and not feel one ounce of obligation to actually find out the answer to any of these questions.
I realize I can be a pain in the ass. I fully acknowledge I can be like a dog with a bone. This stuff is scary, though. I’m going into this blind. I’ve been floundering for damn near a year. If you really think about it I’ve been jerked around by Jerry Lee for 2 years now. I never know when I’m going to receive a payment. I don’t know how much it will be. I don’t know if he will suddenly modify it. It’s terrifying. I have no idea what’s going to happen and I have no idea when it’s going to happen. A little bit of understanding would go a long way.