I am hoping someone can help me with this question. We have had a difficult time with my husband's ex-wife for years, but have always tried to take the high ground and suffer in silence for the benefit of our daughter, but it is starting to reach a point where we just can't take it any longer and want some advice on how to proceed.
My husband's ex left him about 12 years ago as she was having an affair with her boss. Once the divorce was complete, that relationship fell apart... I met my husband about 5 months before the divorce was final. Our daughter (my step daughter) is now 13 but has no recollection of my husband and her mother together. She does not know why they split... and we would certainly never want to share that with her. Her mother has not made anything easy regarding day to day issues but this eased some when she remarried several years ago... probably because she had someone new to deal with. We have compromised on everything, have bended to her will on most any issue... no matter how big or small. When she has had issues with her husband's ex wife and step daughter custody/visitation issues... we have worked around them to help accomodate.
Now, background behind us... about 1 yr to 1 1/2 yrs ago we cut our visitation down to one day during the week and every other weekend as our daughter said it was easier for her homework/school. We have always had joint physical and legal custody. We have always alternated years on claiming her on our taxes... We didn't want to give up a day, but wanted her to be happy and less stressed and since her mom (who only lives 20minutes from our home, door to door) lives in her school district and we moved outside of it about 5 years ago.
The question: her mom called this morning to state that this extra 40 some days a year she has her entitles her to claim her as a dependant and plans to do so until she is 18. Its kind of the straw that broke the camel's back... we have 2 of her half siblings here and want to see her more, but accomodated her wish to be able to spend more time at her mom's house since it was easier for school. Is it legal what she is requesting? This year is our turn to claim her on our taxes... and it may seem trivial, but our other children are adopted and the cost of adopting them has liquidated our savings... we really need to watch every penny. Plus, her college 529 plan is funded, and we need to use that money to start working on ones for the other two.
Can we adjust our schedule to continue with one day during the week and every other weekend during the school year and go back to 2 days duing the week during the summer months and avoid being told "she is the primary custodian". We don't want to force our daughter to come here and cause more stress... but, after giving on everything for so many years, we don't want to agree to this.