Saturday

Why Targeted Parents Lose In Family Court


"In the best interest of the children."

More often than anyone knows, lawyers, guardian ad litem's, doctors (other mental health professionals ) sometimes even parent coordinators become involved in dishonest, one-sided favoritism to end custody disputes. I noticed it wasn't isolated, it was a pattern and the professionals were siding with the parent abusing the child.

I have discovered that there is an undermining of the legal process going on but it's difficult to detect. Every time I'd come across it, I would ask with disbelief, "why ?" That's a question I found no answer to for a very long time.


In some of my case investigations, I found a strong bias from professionals against the Targeted Parent ( T.P. ). {1.} That was a shocking revelation to me.


I work exclusively in cases involving Parental Alienation. This is a problem that will surface in the most difficult kind of family law case's. I'm a consultant in hostile custody disputes. The parents are constantly at war over visitation and many other kinds of shared custody issues. The parental alienation becomes a medical problem for the children caught in the middle.


The litigation is costly for both sides but normally one side has more money to put up a fight. I noticed an interesting pattern, even when the alienating parent (A.P.){2} didn't have money, they still obtained the favoritism of the professional's. In a legal fight if one side has money and the other doesn't, the side with the money normally wins. I wanted to understand why and how the A.P. always seemed to get an upper hand ?


I would often think, "Why is it that so many professionals are unable to see through the machinations of a parental alienator ? " I'd ask myself, " Why doesn't the judge recognize the proof of the parental alientation ? " To my way of thinking, the courts should side with the T.P. and try to do something to protect the children. It was very frustrating to feel helpless in the face of a problem where all I wanted to do was help rescue a child from the emotional abuse.



Frequently in custody cases a Judge will rely on an independent authority to provide guidance to the court, in part because both parents are in gridlock about everything. When cases spins out of control, a Judge might turn to the service of a Parent Coordinator, or a Guardian Ad Litem. { 3. }


The role of a P.C. { 4.} has become an emerging solution for Family Law Judges. The P.C. is a professional from the mediation and arbitration industry, many are never monitored for ethical and professional standards. The certification of P.C.'s started in 2003, so not a lot is understood about their role, even by many family law attorneys.



A Judge decides the need for counseling in custody disputes and they will often order a child to obtain individual therapy. Sometimes a Judge will also order the parents to get counseling. In custody disputes, there's a little trick that an attorney will often try to get away with. It's a stipulation in a court order requiring a T.P. to first have one or more sessions with the child's therapist, before their visitation can begin.


Once this stipulation is planted in a court order, the T.P. goes through one game after another trying to stay in compliance and this becomes a way to block the T.P.'s visitation.


Given the fact that a T.P. only goes through this court room drama once in a lifetime there's no way to know all the various things that are a part of the litigation playbook. Without someone to guide the targeted parent, they're at the mercy of whomever the control is shifted to ( the Parent Coordinator, therapist, supervisor of visitation, etc. )



Anyway, let me go back to my earlier point in the article about the mystery of success for the alienating parent. Regardless of the A.P.'s financial resources, and in spite of any intervening court authorities like a parent coordinator, G.A.L.{ 5. } the therapist, the alienating parents always seem to get what they want, the control and custody of the children.


Then one day I was working on a case that unraveled the mystery.


The lawyers on both sides were working against the targeted parent. They had a plan to put the T.P. in a negative light. If it worked the visitation rights of the T.P. would come to an end. Both lawyers talked it over and decided it was in the best interest of the children to bring the case to a close.



The lawyers sided in favor of the A.P. because they believed that there was no way to change the abusing parents behavior and they also felt that the judge would not substantially change the T.P.'s visitation schedule. From their point of view ( and I don't think they should have taken the law into their own hands ), they were only trying to be realistic. They were also trying to take into consideration the fact that the targeted parent had both the desire and the ability to pay for a protracted legal fight.


The lawyers were also aware the children in the case were suffering from the conflict. The longer the T.P. kept up the fight the more difficult it got for the children. In their minds, the only right thing to do was hand the children over to the A.P. and close the case. In doing this they could put a stop to the parental tug of war.



After I discovered the undermining in this case I went back to examine this scenario in some of my other cases. I found evidence that it was widespread. I've now come to understand these parental alienation cases in a new context. It now seems that many of the well meaning, good intentioned doctors, therapists, P.C.'s and G.A.L.'s, really do understand and recognize the damage caused by parental alienation, but because Parental Alienation Syndrome is not in the DSM or because the Judge won't accept a PAS { 6. } conclusion or because the targeted parent won't give up the fight, but most of all because the children are in the middle of a mental collapse, these professionals believe it's fair and right to put a faster end to the conflict and by any means possible. Even if it does mean siding with the A.P.


I have therefore come to the belief that behind the scenes, the lawyers, the doctors, the Guardian Ad Litem's, the Parenting Coordinators and anyone else in a power brokering position might ( if not stopped ) side with the A.P. (the alienating parent ). I don't think that's fair to the child or the T.P. and recent studies by Amy Baker,PhD have validated that adults of parental alienation suffer throughout their life because of this problem.



Given the breakthrough in now understanding the way in which these cases are being manipulated, I was armed with the fact that exposing a ring of conspirator's can very well lead to license suspensions for many of these professionals. This is a new and serious problem, but at least now I had knowledge of something I did not know before.


Now that I knew what was going on behind the scenes, I started to calculate ways to expose the conspiring parties. Let me put it this way, there are some things that are better left unsaid in this article because there are on-going strategies that are now in effect to alter this course of undermining within the courts. I want to send a message to targeted parents ... there are some of us that know how to find the truth, but you'll have to trust your medical legal consultant because sometimes he or she is really the only one on your side.



1. T.P. is an abbreviation for the term targeted parent. The targeted parent is the non-abusing parent in cases of Parental Alienation.


2. A.P. is an abbreviation for the term alienating parent. The alienating parent is the one abusing the child in the cases involving parental alienation.


3. Dr. Richard Gardner, the founding father of P.A.S. believed that Guardian Ad Litem's only made a bad situation worse for alienated children because they overly empowered the child.


4. P.C. is an abbreviation for the term Parent Coordinator. These professionals are court appointed to assist with custody disputes.


5. G.A.L. is an abbreviation for the term Guardian Ad Litem. This court appointed authority is the legal representative for a child. This person is typically a lawyer, but it could be a professional such as a doctor.


6. P.A.S. is an abbreviation for the term Parental Alienation Syndrome. This is a medical disorder affecting a child in the context of a divorce.


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