Ex-wife changed child custody

Hey there good folks of Forumosa,

I got divorced in the January of this year. We had agreed at the time that I would have full custody of our 3 children. (she’s the primary caregiver Monday - Friday, me on weekends) Last week, during an argument she told me she changed the custody. Today I went to household registration, and sure enough, on 4/22, she brought my ID and chop and unilaterally changed it to 50-50. They said I could not change it back without her present. I got printouts of the change request and updated custody forms and left . I’m gutted. I feel cheated and violated. What can I do?

3Q

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Her doing this without your approval (taking your chop) is probably some kind of forgery.
Get a real lawyer ASAP.
This change might be annulled in court.

If you can`t afford one right now:
https://www.laf.org.tw/en/index.php?action=service

Lesson learned:
Keep all your and kids important things (e.g. passports, documents, chop) in a safe location.

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Act fast, they may have some video records.

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Since time is of the essence (and I don’t know how to cross-link a post), I’ll post @Marco 's lawyer here. They’re fluent in English and can give you advice on what to do next.
Tell them Marco sent you.

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Two ways to get a link:

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Update:
I got lots of advice and spoke to friends and family. I’m currently writing this from the household registration office, as the kind person behind the desk processes the change back to 100% custody of the children to me.

How did I do it?
I emailed Marco’s lawyer and he told me the crimes she might have committed. With this info I went back to my ex on Monday morning and told her I had an appointment with someone at the household registration office to see if it was true that she changed custody. I listed the criminal charges if it was changed without my consent. She went nuts, but I stayed calm, and got her to sign the document returning custody, or so I thought. Turns out she wrote her own name for 100% and not mine… Maybe by accident, probably on purpose, but i didn’t accuse her, just brought another form to full again. But she didn’t want to sign. So I told her I wouldn’t help with kids, pay any money, or do anything until she signed. I also gave her a deadline of the end of the week. Well, it only took till the end of the day. As I finish writing this, the paperwork is being presented to me and I’m going home knowing my children’s custody and security is protected be me.

Thank you again for your opinions and advice. All is well in the world again.

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Well done mate.

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Aren’t they still with her M-F?

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OP should get them 100% now in my opinion.

Yes, those two whole posts were very convincing. :doh:

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Haha well he seems slightly less crazy than her.

Did you read the OP’s update?

Was it ever explained how she did this? Did the staff see her use your chop or did she stamp it before going and claim that you did it? Whole process seems extremely dubious, can you simply take or copy her chop and do whatever you like?

How can you make sure that she doesn’t simply do it again next week?

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Shouldn’t every custody agreement be 50/50 unless one parent has serious issues?

I guess not custody but “caregiver” like OP said. Shouldn’t the person that has full custody primarily be taking care of the children? Especially if the other person is doing illegal things lol.

Yes, we returned back to “normal”. M-F but I’m there all morning and in the evenings to help wash them for bed. The reason I have 100% custody is because I don’t want to negotiate with a terrorist ready to use the nuclear option at any moment whenever an important decision must be made. I am there so often is because she’s incapable by herself and has no support system whatsoever (not even mother/family support). She needs me… and I need her M-F to maintain my freedom - and sanity.

This is a good question and has a 2 part answer:
I went to the SongShan Household Registration office - it’s where we got divorced, so… but she did not. Apparently, at the community centre near her home, they have this kind of service. She told me today, that she spoke to an old man behind the desk, told him a sob story about how she needs 50/50 to do administrative things for the kids because it’s easier since she’s Taiwanese. The man asked if she had my permission, and she said yes (Her words) Since I’m a foreigner and can’t sling the lingo, he took her word for it and declined to contact me. Since she had my ID, chop, and could write my name in Chinese, he didn’t think twice and made the change.

The second part to this answer is the power of the chop. I know I gave my ID to her to do an administrative task sometime in April, but I didn’t give her my chop. However, she had a copy of my chop (I now have both) She told me her mother made it sometime in the past. Apparently it’s common for a person to have 2 or 3. But these chops are powerful, kind of like a Power of Attorney. When I went today to the office, they didn’t even call her to confirm that I was changing custody back to me. I had her ID, her chop, and her signature on the paper. It was enough. I asked the woman helping me if it is a problem to have such power without any checks, and she agreed it was.

So, it got me thinking. Shouldn’t people know about this… especially foreigners who are most vulnerable. She could have opened bank accounts or taken out loans. What kind of SOP is this? I was toying with the idea of writing a letter to the editor… but I might just let sleeping dogs lie. Maybe someone with more insight can fill me in.

As for your last question: I asked the person helping me the same thing. I requested to stipulate on the document that both parties must be present to make a change to the children’s custody (I can’t believe I have to even say this) The only option I had was to make a note saying to call if any changes are made and my phone number was added. It’s not much, but it’s something.

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In a perfect world, yes. In our situation, no.

Copies of the same chop? I was under the impression that it’s not kosher at all.

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This is a tough balance that I’m trying to strike. I don’t think taking the children away from their mother is a good idea, regardless of how I feel about the mom. And if I’m going to pay anybody to watch my children, the mother ought to be the best person. So I trust this idea but verify by being present daily. The kids are young, the divorce is still fresh, and it’s the line I’ve gotta tow to keep peace and harmony (as much as possible).

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