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Tentative Ruling
Judge Thomas Anderle
Department 3 SB-Anacapa
1100 Anacapa Street P.O. Box 21107 Santa Barbara, CA 93121-1107

FAMILY LAW

Brice Erickson and Jobeth Erickson

Case No: 1466383
Hearing Date: Tue May 13, 2014 10:30

Nature of Proceedings: Req. for Order: CC/Visit/Atty Fees and Costs

This dissolution action was filed on 3/27/14 by father after 8 years of marriage [date of separation 3/10/14] and one child, age 6.

 

Fatherís RFO

 

On 4/22/14 father filed his RFO; set the hearing for 5/13/14; requests orders for child custody [seeks joint legal and joint physical custody]; submits a holiday schedule form FL-312C; a physical custody attachment form FL-341D, and a joint legal custody attachment form FL-341E; requests a 2/2/3 rotating child visitation order with alternating weekends; requests attorney fees ($7,500 or $15,000 if contested hearing).

 

Father filed his I&E; reports he earns $4,748/mo; is 43 years old; reports mother earns $12,500/mo; retirement payments of $423/mo; medical insurance payments of $366/mo; $4,500 in case; no liquid assets; other assets TBD; has paid his attorney $7,500 from a loan; provides no time share because no parenting schedule is in place; reports child attends Marymount and tuition is $20,00/yr; reports mother has liquid assets of $500,000 some of which produces income; that considerable money from motherís family has routinely contributed to her income; believes she is executor of the Seder Family Trust and is a beneficiary; she has income from administering the Trust.

 

Supports his requests with a brief; reports mother has drastically interfered with his ability to see the minor child since he moved out on 3/29/14 and mother has rejected all standard custodial arrangements; there has been an absence of any routine; that is harmful to the minor child; a schedule is needed; that frequent and continuing contact is necessary and appropriate; the Court should implement a visitation plan immediately and order mother to pay the fees requested forthwith.

 

Motherís Response to the Dissolution Action

 

Mother filed her response to the dissolution action on 4/25/14; agrees that the marriage should be resolved and that it was about an 8 year marriage; seeks joint legal custody and sole physical custody with child visitation be granted; reports that property rights etc be subject to an Agreement of the parties dated 3/10/06.

 

Motherís Response to Fatherís RFO

 

There is no response to fatherís RFO in the file.

 

Fatherís Reply

 

On May 8 father filed a document entitled Reply; reports that the Court should order his proposed custodial requests irrespective of the fact there is no response filed; asks that the Court set a parenting plan and order attorney fees; reports that since 4/22 mother has refused all his requests to establish a custodial schedule for the minor child; contends mother is using the child as a pawn; that creates an insecure environment for the child.

 

On May 8 fatherís lawyer filed her declaration in support of fatherís Reply; said motherís counsel has requested that the matter be continued to May 20; among other things motherís counsel contends the RFO was filed one day late in order to have it heard on the date now set; fatherís lawyer reports there is an urgency to have the matter heard; that fatherís time with the minor child has been ignored and his parental rights will be significantly and prejudicially injured if the Court does not, at least, set a parenting plan consistent with fatherís request.

 

Mediation

 

Family Court Services reported no agreement reached.

 

Continuance Alert

 

The Courtís secretary reports she has been telephonically alerted by motherís counsel that he will seek a continuance of one week at the May 13 Calendar Call.

 

Ruling

 

The Court will grant a one week continuance; there is in fact no response in the file; the Court thoroughly understands fatherís distress but the Court should hear from mother before making any rulings and is entitled to read motherís Response; a one-week delay under the circumstances is justified.