BM / SS Clash: Money & Custody Question
It will be appreciated if you can please help me with a custody / money question as I have no idea how this will work.
Early this morning I heard SS17's voice raised. Turns out he was talking to BM on the phone and it ended in a shouting match. BM is demanding that SS come live with her and that he pay her money. SS doesnt want to do either of those things. (I would guess that this is all about the money anyway.) SS is 17 and will turn 18 before the end of the month.
My situation is slightly messy. SS lives with me. STBXH has full custody of SS, but moved out a few weeks ago. He left SS with me because he is a cheapskate who can save on rent without SS. We (Me, STBXH, SS) had an informal agreement - nothing on paper - that SS would stay with me as he has been living in my home for the last 3 years and I have been paying all his expenses anyway. It is also less disruptive as it is SS's final year of schooling.
BM has seen SS a handful of times in the last three years and hasnt paid a penny towards SS's upkeep and it seems STBXH has now gone after BM for all the back CS that BM owes him. (Not my concern, their business.)
SS was a train wreck last year this time. He has turned his life around and I have no issues with this kid at the moment. The smoking, pot smoking, drinking has stopped. There are no strange girls in my house in various states of undress. His room is tidy and he is neat and clean. His grades are good, and he will graduate at the end of the school year.
He has a part time job which he loves - and according to his boss he is doing really well. The money that he earns, half of it he pay to me. This was his choice, he wanted to "pay room and board". (I am saving the money and will give it all back to him later.) He keeps a small amout of what he earns for pocket money, but the rest he also gives to me for "safe keeping". He wants to buy a set of professional chef's knives for himself for when he goes to hotel school in the Fall. He has a dream of becoming a professional chef and has been working hard towards that - as well as keeping up with his school work. (My parents have already secretly bought him a high grade set of professional knives as recommended by the head chef where he works part time. SS will have to buy that from them for £10 pounds on his birthday as traditionally you dont give someone knives as present. The knives cost around £600.)
SS has being trying really hard these last few months. He was in tears this morning as he doesnt want to live with his mother - she has never wanted him or had time for him. He may have some money - which he is working for - but that is going towards things he needs and wants. He doesn't want to have to pay his mother because he wont have money for his student knives... He doesnt want to move from the only home he has.
I called STBXH this morning and he said SS can stay with me - doesnt have to go to BM. STBXH isnt bothered by this situation at all! I asked this stupid man to call his son - as well as come around to my home tonight to speak to SS.
Can BM force SS to move back with her? Can she take what he earns? (BM doesnt work and receives a "disability / social grant" of some sort. She hasn't worked in years after an ankle injury on a wet floor. She walks just fine when not under the influence of alcohol.) Do I have to call a lawyer? Or leave things till his birthday?