Author Topic: Signed Contract for Job in Other Country, Backing Out due to Family  (Read 839 times)

canisius

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Okay, yes, first of all it's a jerky thing to do (backing out of the job, not putting family first).  Scroll to the bottom if you just want the question, without the convoluted back story. 

Here's the situation (and some may have seen my previous posts on moving to Sweden).  I accepted a job and let them know I was committed as long as we got the work permits, signed the contract, and spent the past month and about seven hundred dollars gathering the documents to apply for a work visa.  Now my worry, all along, and I had warned them in writing and was assured by the Migration agency and the employer, was my step-daughter.  In a nut shell, she and my wife were born in another country her bio father was abusive, saw her three times.  Once when he left the hospital and my current wife with the bill, another time when he was drunk and trying to beat his ex and my wife, and the third at the court case awarding my wife sole custody and authorization to travel and live in the United States.  Fast forward, I have raised her for the past eight of ten years, we have lived happily ever after in the U.S. and have gone on with life.  We were assured by three different lawyers in the U.S. that the documents from the home country awarded us legal custody and due to state laws there was no reason to regurgitate the case.

Well, Sweden, will not issue her (my step-daughter) a visa due to them wanting either a letter from biological father granting permission to move to Sweden (which he will not grant) or a letter from the U.S. (and not the home country) recognizing legal custody or a new travel authorization from their home country.  All of this will be expensive, and delayed so I told the employer, I don't think it's going to work.

Now the employer is insisting that they really want me so it's okay if it's delayed, they'll still take us, and go ahead and file a case for one of those documents.

I'm not wanting to do that for four reasons:
1.) Simply, my wife is happy with the status quo and does not want to relive the trauma if it's unnecessary.  In addition, if it's a permissive document, I'm assuming we'll have to do that each time we get a work extension in Sweden.
2.) To pay bills, I'll either need to continue working my new job and break my contract mid year (which would put my license and my reputation at risk) or live off of savings.
3.) It's one thing to move kids to a new country in the summer to prepare.  It's another to yank them out of school in September or October and move to a new country.
4.) I simply don't want the stress, not financial cost, of waiting for something that could take an indeterminate amount of time. 

Finally, I received a phone call for a job I applied for a few months ago, that I have an offer for a larger salary and a better position.

So, reading my contract it doesn't look like there's any penalty to me by canceling it since work hasn't begun and if it had I'd only need to give one month notice.  Perhaps they may ask me to repay the fee for the permit, but I'm Mustachian and it's only $500.

So in short, I suppose what I'm asking is 1.) Is there something I may not be seeing objectively as I'm in the emotional heart of it? 
2.) Yes, I know what I'm doing really sucks to that company and some would say it's unethical.  That said, any suggestions on letting
the Swedish employer down?

Thanks, and thanks for reading all!

Sibley

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You were upfront about your stepdaughter, correct? You've been in communication as this situation developed? I think you're ok from that angle. Tell them you're so sorry, but given what's happening you're going to have to decline the opportunity.

What you may want to look into is making all this mess unnecessary in the future. Adoption or something. I have no idea if it would be possible, particularly since there are at least 2 countries involved, but I'd think it's worth looking into a bit.

canisius

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You were upfront about your stepdaughter, correct? You've been in communication as this situation developed? I think you're ok from that angle. Tell them you're so sorry, but given what's happening you're going to have to decline the opportunity.

Correct.  I told them when I accepted the job, I am commited as long as the visas go through.  Technically, the visa has not been denied as they're asking for this document, but once one avoids the sunk cost fallacy I would say it's denied at least in her case.  I also let them know in the first two e-mails before I signed the contract my concern about my daughter, and have been corresponding since the first request from Sweden migration.

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What you may want to look into is making all this mess unnecessary in the future. Adoption or something. I have no idea if it would be possible, particularly since there are at least 2 countries involved, but I'd think it's worth looking into a bit.

Unfortunately, it has been very difficult to adopt as we tried due to the dual jurisdiction and the fact that terminating the biological parental rights (Separate from custody) still means he gets due process (Which is understandable.  I'd want the same, if the shoe was on the other food).  Therefore either he flies up here (unlikely), calls in with a translator, or the court appoints a lawyer to represent him in absencia.  However, very few family judges, as we understand it, will be willing to terminate the parental rights due to the international jurisdiction aspect and if he fights it, every lawyer has indicated that this means that will end in the best situation as is, and at worst, something worse.  So as our last family lawyer put it, "You all can travel internationally, you all have legal custody, ask yourselves if you want to put that at risk for adoption and go through a six month (at least) civil case and an unclear future, or can you live with what you have now."  The odd thing in this situation is living in another country (which Sweden wants) as opposed to traveling (which we have authority and have done).  Our current lawyer did mention, another client had a similar situation in having new documents when the client move for work to France, except the biological father was amiable.