Asiodu v. Asiodu TT[ 2011] HC 342
Case Name: Asiodu v. Asiodu TT[ 2011] HC 342
Judge: Lambert Peterson, J.
Country:Trinidad and Tobago
Subject: Family law
By Application relating to Children, the petitioner sought custody, care and control of the children of the family Xavier born on the 6th November, 1996, Gabrielle born on the 25th September, 2000 and Ysabel born on the 7th July, 2003. The petitioner asked that the respondent whether by himself, his servants and/or agents be restrained from removing the children of the family from the petitioner’s care and control and from the jurisdiction of Trinidad and Tobago; and that the respondent pay to the petitioner periodical payments including secured periodical payments.
The respondent had been living in England since February 2010. He had access to the children during the Christmas 2010 vacation. During this period of access he filed an application in England for a residence (custody) order in his favour, and as a result did not return them to Trinidad and Tobago on 2nd January, 2011 as had been agreed between the parties. The mother filed an application in England, for the return of the children to Trinidad and Tobago. The Honourable Mr. Peter Jackson of the Family Division of the High Court of Justice for England and Wales ordered that the children be returned to Trinidad and Tobago, and they continue to live in Trinidad with the mother.
The court, in deciding the legal custody or upbringing of a minor should have regard to the welfare of the minor as the first and paramount consideration.
On the other hand the court in exercising its powers to make a maintenance order in favour of a child, must have regard to all the circumstances of the case including the statutory guidelines set out in section 27(2) of the Trinidad and Tobago Matrimonial Proceedings and Property Act.
On analysis of the facts of this case the court made the following findings:
a) both parents, are capable of providing adequate physical care for their children;
b) the children love and has a significant attachment to each parent;
c) the conflict between the parents is longstanding and deep-seated;
d) the father has a history of violent behaviour against the mother
e) the children are acutely aware of the violence between their parents;
f) the children’s welfare would be promoted by access with each parent; there was no agreement between the parties that subsequent to their separation, the mother should bear full financial responsibility for the expenses for the children
h) the father has not provided finances to the mother for the children maintenance since February 2010
i) the father has been withholding financial support from the children and this is a inimical to the welfare of the children
j) the mother has been solely meeting the children’s financial needs since February 2010
k) the ascertainable assets of the marriage are the respective vehicles owned by each party in addition to furniture and appliances
As such, taking into consideration all the circumstances of the case, and bearing in mind all the evidence, the statutory and judicial guidelines, it was ordered inter alia that:
- The petitioner is granted custody, care and control of the children Xavier born on the 6th November, 1996, Gabrielle, born on 25th September, 2000 and Ysabel born on 7th July, 2003 with effect from the 25th November, 2011 until each child respectively attains age 18 years or further order in the meantime.
- The respondent shall pay to the petitioner the monthly sum of $4,000.00 TTD for the maintenance of each child of the family by transfer into the petitioner’s bank account RBC Royal Bank 8211******, with effect from the 3rd January, 2012 and thereafter on or before the first working day of each succeeding month until each child respectively attains the age of 18 years, completes training or education for a profession or vocation or further order whichever is the later.