Thursday

The Broken Custody Court System - Is there Reason for Hope?

About "Time's Up!"

by Barry Goldstein
Attorney, Author, Advocate for Mothers Without Custody, and Victims of Domestic Violence
Every day I hear horrific stories of courts using deeply flawed and outdated practices that ruin the lives of protective mothers and their children. I learn about the unspeakable pain and anguish caused by the bias and unwillingness to consider new research that demonstrates the standard practices are hurting children.


I hate these stories with a passion while feeling deeply honored that protective mothers trust me enough to share them with me.

Surprisingly, I am going to provide information that suggests that there is hope. I think this is important psychologically because we are all inevitably worn down by the catastrophic stories we experience so we need reason to hope. It also may be that in projecting a sense of confidence it will encourage better results and coverage. In fact, in recent months I have started to see signs that maybe something good is happening and this long national nightmare might eventually end.               Read more »

10 comments:

  1. "Normal parents can put the needs of their children first. They know that demeaning and demonizing their partner harms the children and however they may feel about their they do not want to harm their children. The problem of brainwashing children arises when one or other parent or both put their needs first and use the children as weapons against each other. These are the adults who have personality disorders that go unrecognized in court. There both parents are given an equal hearing the problem occurs when one parent lies and cheats under oath, manipulates the judiciary and everyone in the case while the normal parent looks on in horror. Women will always be given the benefit of the doubt over men especially by men which is why so many men loose their children. The training of so called experts in the universities and in workshops has been in the hands of radical feminists for the last forty years as a result there is no level playing field between parents any longer. All I can say that I have seen children deprived of a loving parent reconnect after years of demonizing that parent. For other parents they have to live with the injustice for the rest of their lives their child or children are to damaged to ever know the truth." ~ Erin Pizzey's comment on: https://www.causes.com/causes/409526/updates/791783
    Website http://erinpizzey.com
    #familycourt #familylaw #familylawattorney #familylawlawyer #familycourtinjustice #pas #alienation #parentalalienation #erinpizzey #childrensrights #fathersrights

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  2. HOW DID CHILDREN OF DIVORCE GET STUCK WITH THE VISITATION PLAN THAT AFFORDS THEM ACCESS TO THEIR NON-RESIDENTIAL PARENT ONLY ONE NIGHT DURING THE WEEK AND EVERY OTHER WEEK-END?

    What is the research that supports such a schedule? Where is the data that confirms that such a plan is in the best interest of the child?

    Well, reader, you can spend your time from now until eternity researching the literature, and YOU WILL NOT DISCOVER ANY SUPPORTING DATA for the typical visitation arrangement with the non-residential parent! The reality is that this arrangement is based solely on custom. And just like the short story, "The Lottery," in which the prizewinner is stoned to death, the message is that deeds and judgments are frequently arrived at based on nothing more than habit, fantasy, prejudice, and yes, on "junk science."

    This family therapist upholds the importance of both parents playing an active and substantial role in their children's lives----especially in situations when the parents are apart. In order to support the goal for each parent to provide a meaningfully and considerable involvement in the lives of their children, I affirm that the resolution to custody requires an arrangement for joint legal custody and physical custody that maximizes the time with the non-residential----with the optimal arrangement being 50-50, whenever practical. It is my professional opinion that the customary visitation arrangement for non-residential parents to visit every other weekend and one night during the week is not sufficient to maintain a consequential relationship with their children. Although I have heard matrimonial attorneys, children's attorneys, and judges assert that the child needs the consistency of the same residence, I deem this assumption to be nonsense. I cannot be convinced that the consistency with one's bed trumps consistency with a parent!

    Should the reader question how such an arrangement can be judiciously implemented which maximizes the child's time---even in a 50-50 arrangement----with the non-residential parent, I direct the reader to the book, Mom's House, Dads House, by the Isolina Ricci, PhD.

    Indeed, the research that we do have supports the serious consequences to children when the father, who is generally the non-residential parent, does not play a meaningful role in lives of his children. The book, Fatherneed, (2000) by Dr. Kyle Pruitt, summarizes the research at Yale University about the importance of fathers to their children. And another post on this page summarizes an extensive list of other research.

    Children of divorce or separation of their parents previously had each parent 100% of the time and obviously cannot have the same arrangement subsequent to their parents' separation. But it makes no sense to this family therapist that the result of parental separation is that the child is accorded only 20% time with one parent and 80% with the other. What rational person could possibly justify this?

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  3. Children's Bill of Rights

    WHEN PARENTS ARE NOT TOGETHER

    Every kid has rights, particularly when mom and dad are splitting up. Below are some things parents shouldn't forget -- and kids shouldn't let them -- when the family is in the midst of a break-up.

    You have the right to love both your parents. You also have the right to be loved by both of them. That means you shouldn't feel guilty about wanting to see your dad or your mom at any time. It's important for you to have both parents in your life, particularly during difficult times such as a break-up of your parents.

    You do not have to choose one parent over the other. If you have an opinion about which parent you want to live with, let it be known. But nobody can force you to make that choice. If your parents can't work it out, a judge may make the decision for them.

    You're entitled to all the feelings you're having. Don't be embarrassed by what you're feeling. It is scary when your parents break up, and you're allowed to be scared. Or angry. Or sad. Or whatever.

    You have the right to be in a safe environment. This means that nobody is allowed to put you in danger, either physically or emotionally. If one of your parents is hurting you, tell someone -- either your other parent or a trusted adult like a teacher.

    You don't belong in the middle of your parents' break-up. Sometimes your parents may get so caught up in their own problems that they forget that you're just a kid, and that you can't handle their adult worries. If they start putting you in the middle of their dispute, remind them that it's their fight, not yours.

    Grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins are still part of your life. Even if you're living with one parent, you can still see relatives on your other parent's side. You'll always be a part of their lives, even if your parents aren't together anymore.

    You have the right to be a child. Kids shouldn't worry about adult problems. Concentrate on your school work, your friends, activities, etc. Your mom and dad just need your love. They can handle the rest.

    IT IS NOT YOUR FAULT AND DON'T BLAME YOURSELF.

    ----Special Concerns of Children Committee, March, 1998

    "Children's Bill of Rights" is a publication of the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers. © 1997 - 2001. All rights reserved. "Children's Bill of Rights" may be reproduced under the following conditions:

    It must be reproduced in its entirety with no additions or deletions, including the AAML copyright notice. It must be distributed free of charge. The AAML reserves the right to limit or deny the right of reproduction in its sole discretion.

    © 2013 AAML Florida. 3046 Hawks Glen Tallahassee, FL 32312 | 850-668-0614

    The hiring of a lawyer is an important decision that should not be based solely on advertisements. Before you decide, ask the attorney to send you free written information about their qualifications and experience. The information you obtain at this site is not, nor is it intended to be, legal advice. You should consult an attorney for individual advice regarding your own situation.
    http://www.aamlflorida.org/index.cfm?fuseaction=pages.tentips

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. PRO SE RIGHTS:
      Brotherhood of Trainmen v. Virginia ex rel. Virginia State Bar, 377 U.S. 1; v. Wainwright, 372 U.S. 335; Argersinger v. Hamlin, Sheriff 407 U.S. 425 ~ Litigants can be assisted by unlicensed laymen during judicial proceedings.

      Conley v. Gibson, 355 U.S. 41 at 48 (1957) ~ "Following the simple guide of rule 8(f) that all pleadings shall be so construed as to do substantial justice"... "The federal rules reject the approach that pleading is a game of skill in which one misstep by counsel may be decisive to the outcome and accept the principle that the purpose of pleading is to facilitate a proper decision on the merits." The court also cited Rule 8(f) FRCP, which holds that all pleadings shall be construed to do substantial justice.

      Davis v. Wechler, 263 U.S. 22, 24; Stromberb v. California, 283 U.S. 359; NAACP v. Alabama, 375 U.S. 449 ~ "The assertion of federal rights, when plainly and reasonably made, are not to be defeated under the name of local practice."

      Elmore v. McCammon (1986) 640 F. Supp. 905 ~ "... the right to file a lawsuit pro se is one of the most important rights under the constitution and laws."

      Federal Rules of Civil Procedures, Rule 17, 28 USCA "Next Friend" ~ A next friend is a person who represents someone who is unable to tend to his or her own interest.

      Haines v. Kerner, 404 U.S. 519 (1972) ~ "Allegations such as those asserted by petitioner, however inartfully pleaded, are sufficient"... "which we hold to less stringent standards than formal pleadings drafted by lawyers."

      Jenkins v. McKeithen, 395 U.S. 411, 421 (1959); Picking v. Pennsylvania R. Co., 151 Fed 2nd 240; Pucket v. Cox, 456 2nd 233 ~ Pro se pleadings are to be considered without regard to technicality; pro se litigants' pleadings are not to be held to the same high standards of perfection as lawyers.

      Maty v. Grasselli Chemical Co., 303 U.S. 197 (1938) ~ "Pleadings are intended to serve as a means of arriving at fair and just settlements of controversies between litigants. They should not raise barriers which prevent the achievement of that end. Proper pleading is important, but its importance consists in its effectiveness as a means to accomplish the end of a just judgment."

      NAACP v. Button, 371 U.S. 415); United Mineworkers of America v. Gibbs, 383 U.S. 715; and Johnson v. Avery, 89 S. Ct. 747 (1969) ~ Members of groups who are competent nonlawyers can assist other members of the group achieve the goals of the group in court without being charged with "unauthorized practice of law."

      Picking v. Pennsylvania Railway, 151 F.2d. 240, Third Circuit Court of Appeals ~ The plaintiff's civil rights pleading was 150 pages and described by a federal judge as "inept". Nevertheless, it was held "Where a plaintiff pleads pro se in a suit for protection of civil rights, the Court should endeavor to construe Plaintiff's Pleadings without regard to technicalities."

      Puckett v. Cox, 456 F. 2d 233 (1972) (6th Cir. USCA) ~ It was held that a pro se complaint requires a less stringent reading than one drafted by a lawyer per Justice Black in Conley v. Gibson (see case listed above, Pro Se Rights Section).

      Roadway Express v. Pipe, 447 U.S. 752 at 757 (1982) ~ "Due to sloth, inattention or desire to seize tactical advantage, lawyers have long engaged in dilatory practices... the glacial pace of much litigation breeds frustration with the Federal Courts and ultimately, disrespect for the law."

      Sherar v. Cullen, 481 F. 2d 946 (1973) ~ "There can be no sanction or penalty imposed upon one because of his exercise of Constitutional Rights."

      Schware v. Board of Examiners, United State Reports 353 U.S. pages 238, 239. ~ "The practice of law cannot be licensed by any state/State."

      Sims v. Aherns, 271 SW 720 (1925) ~ "The practice of law is an occupation of common right."

      Delete
  4. It's human nature to seek out a partner in life, and to possibly marry and have children. Unfortunately the matrimonial establishment, as we are all aware, is being methodically torn down by a demoralized society. Sadly the divorce rate is still on the rise and the foundation of marriage is being devalued and is crumbling. As adults we learn to adapt and move on when divorce attacks our lives but for children this is another story. They are the real victims of divorce and unfortunately they will suffer dearly from our selfishness and in most cases follow the same path of destruction if not worse.
    As a nation we have been granted certain civil rights by our constitution. Through the years it has been amended to better the lives of many Americans. The two most notable changes have come to Women in the 1920s and with African Americans in the 1960s. These rights were long overdue for both segments of our nation but thankfully we realized our mistakes and corrected them. This was not an easy journey for either of these crusades but through dedication and perseverance the bells of liberty rang loudly and victory was achieved.
    Unfortunately we have reached yet another fork in the road and with that comes another challenge to the American people. "We've worked hard for women's rights, but we have to watch out that the pendulum doesn't swing the other way" says Ruthie J. of the Reach FM. Ironically the pendulum has already swung far to one side and this time the male gender is being demonized by erroneous and fraudulent information. Males are being portrayed as callus, uncaring, and without emotion. We are being taught that men represent 95% of abuse in this nation against women. These and many other false statistics are being recklessly strewn throughout society and none of it is true. Yes, women are being abused by men that is a fact. striking a woman is abhorrent to the highest degree and should be dealt with appropriately but men are abused at an equal rate and they are being ignored. According to a study by the Center for Disease Control men represent 38% of domestic violence related injuries. Compound that with the fact that only 0.9% of men report abuse verses 8.5% of women and I think we have a pretty equal degree of violence between partners.
    The cornerstone of this "abuse" is VAWA the Violence Against Women Act. It was passed into law by Bill Clinton in 1994 and has been extended by every subsequent President. This law funnels Billions of dollars into discriminatory education and propaganda that violates men's civil rights. Many times DVIs or Domestic Violence Injunctions are used as a tool in divorce, child custody or just vengeance against a partner, most often against males. This is because the system of acquiring a DVI is simple and requires no evidence, witnesses or prior police reports. Just the word of an alleged victim making a claim of abuse. The repercussions of these orders are devastating and many times result in a violation, arrest and complete destruction of one's life. Even in cases when they are dismissed, a serious blemish remains on the falsely accused forever; how does that look to potential employers who almost always perform background checks prior to employment? This must be stopped and a better system of protecting all victims of domestic violence should be put in place.
    I hope to help bring awareness to gender discrimination and help provide support for men who are abused. There are programs to help women of abuse but nothing for men. My website will provide more information on the facts, my personal experiences and the stories of those who have been victims of this heinous tactic of relationship vengeance. Men and women should truly have equal rights and currently the scales are unjustly tilted. Let's work together to end domestic violence and not vilify one gender as inherently abusive. "United we stand, divided we fall" A powerful statement that we must never forget.

    Thank you,
    Tom Lemons
    Founder, www.falsedvireports.com

    ReplyDelete
  5. Florida Judge & Lawyer Complaints

    How to file complaints against Florida Family Law Judges and Family Law Lawyers?

    Each State has its own procedures for filing complaints against Judges. All states require a written and signed complaint. Some states have a form for you to fill out. Other States request a letter. Grievances of misconduct usually concern issues of conflict of interest or impartiality. Adverse rulings or judgments are not considered legitimate grievances. You must support the complaint to the JQC about the Florida Family Law Judge with sufficient documentation.

    Florida Family Law Judge Complaints
    Write to the Florida Judicial Qualifications Committee.
    http://www.floridasupremecourt.org
    Florida Family Law Judicial Complaint
    Mailing Address
    Judicial Qualifications Committee (JQC)
    1110 Thomasville Road
    Tallahassee, FL 32303
    Telephone
    850-488-1581

    All states maintain an agency to process lawyer complaints. These disciplinary counsels can usually be found as a department of the state bar association or as a branch of the state Supreme Court. Complaints in Florida can be filed by filling out a form supplied by the disciplinary counsel or by writing a letter to The Florida Bar.

    Florida Family Law Lawyer Complaints
    The Florida Bar handles complaints about family law lawyers in Florida.
    Mailing Address
    The Florida Bar
    651 E. Jefferson Street
    Tallahassee, FL 32399-2300
    Telephone
    850-561-5600

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. FLORIDA TODAY - OPINION
      Written by Gordon E. Finley, Ph.D., Miami

      While I applaud columnist Paul Flemming for a sound review of the issues in Saturday’s “Alimony bill will be great — for lawyers,” his bottom-line conclusion is dead wrong.

      The proposed state alimony reform bill will reduce litigation, not increase litigation. A bit of history: For years, the divorce vultures (a.k.a., the Family Law Section of the Florida Bar) have conned the Florida Legislature into writing divorce legislation that maximizes litigation and thus maximizes their income. In part, they have accomplished this by maximizing judicial discretion, which in practice means endless conflict and, of course, endless paid litigation.

      No matter what they may say, the divorce vultures are interested only in one thing — maximizing their income.

      I can irrefutably demonstrate this point with Flemming’s own words: “Thomas Duggar, an attorney in Tallahassee and a member of the Florida Bar’s Family Law Section, said last week at a Tallahassee Bar Association meeting that the section has a $100,000 war chest to sway public opinion against the legislation.”

      Do your readers honestly believe they are spending all this money so they will lose income? The divorce vultures get the message in terms of what alimony reform will cost them — and save the children, fathers and mothers of divorce. I regret Mr. Flemming did not do the same.

      Full Disclosure: I am an alimony-paying divorced father of two young adult daughters and retired university divorce researcher with multiple research and scholarly publications on this topic.

      Delete
  6. Dear Friends,

    One in six Americans know someone who has been falsely accused of domestic violence. The silver bullets in divorce, false allegations are sometimes used to obtain child custody. This despicable act removes fit and loving parents from the lives of their children.

    Please take a moment, as soon as possible, and speak out for the millions of children who are missing a falsely accused parent. And do it for the parents who are grieving for their children, stolen with a lie.

    Find your senators here:
    http://www.senate.gov/general/contact_information/senators_cfm.cfm

    Take note of their party affiliation and phone number.

    If your senator is a Republican, call, and ask them to support Sen. Grassley's Substitute Amendment to VAWA.

    If your senator is a Democrat, call, and ask them to demand changes to Sen. Leahy's VAWA (S. 1925), to curb false allegations of domestic violence.

    Do it For the Children, Stolen with a Lie

    Thank you for taking a stand for affected families everywhere.

    ReplyDelete
  7. A Support and Advocacy blog for Protective Parents and innocent Children harmed by wrongdoing under the color of law, the Family Law and CPS Industries. We investigate where the media can't or won't go.

    The people "have the right to instruct their representatives, petition government for redress of grievances, and assemble freely to consult for the common good." In Keeping with the Constitution, Blind Bulldog is committed to serving the common good in Shasta County.

    The following, brilliant take is from a Blind Bulldog affiliate from Southern Cal:

    "The untethered aggression of family courts is due to a vacuum of institutional client advocacy--unlike criminal courts, which have firmly-established constitutional rights, strict state and federal oversight of state court judges, and a dedicated “criminal defense bar” to thwart government aggression, or civil courts that have “plaintiffs'” and “defense” bars to balance one another’s private agendas, family court has no “litigant bar.” The divorce attorneys themselves favor aggression for the simple reason identified in the movie--follow the money. Attorneys have not filled that vacuum to defend their own clients, leaving them vulnerable to the natural tendency of government to intrude. Family court litigants are, sad to say, woefully unaware of what they’re up against, and the body count shows results that are entirely predictable--but we think preventable.

    Family court was created by lawyers and judges--literally--rather than the citizens it should be protecting. We’ve located the history through testimony and other documentation showing something like a Jekyll Island series of “off the record” meetings between California judges, attorneys, and bureaucrats in the 90’s to “set up” family court to their liking, then seeking what became essentially a rubber stamp granting unheard of discretion from the California legislature. This system is now unfortunately the model or trend for many states--hence our nationwide membership and approach. Citizens had virtually no input and maintain no control.


    Federal courts have observed unusually broad adaptations of “federalism,” “comity,” “standing,” and “abstention” legal doctrines to leave the vacuum unoccupied by otherwise ordinary protections of federal rights for individual citizens and legal consumers. Litigants themselves are outmatched in organization--they’re a revolving door commodity. No one wants to stick around long enough to enforce reform. Hence rampant abuse in a lop-sided system of foxes guarding the henhouse, and you and I are on the ever-expanding menu."

    ReplyDelete
  8. "CHILDREN OF DIVORCE DESERVE FULL ACCESS TO BOTH PARENTS, WHENEVER POSSIBLE."
    Personally, I can’t find anyone willing to reject that statement publicly. It’s a fundamental truth. We now have a wealth of evidence demonstrating children are better off, in most situations, when they have something near equal time with each parent. So why are shared-parenting bills are being rejected throughout the country?

    Do legislators believe mothers are more important to children than fathers? For the most part, I don’t think so. Politicians are, however, under quite a bit of pressure from some very powerful anti-shared parenting special interests. Recently, we’ve seen these opponents contribute to shared-parenting bills failing to pass in South Dakota and Minnesota.

    Some would argue disappointments like those are clear signs that shared parenting legislation will not happen anytime soon. The opposite is true. The near victories in these states and others is an enormous indication politicians are beginning to understand the vast majority of American citizens believe children of divorce deserve equal access to both parents, whenever possible.

    In fact, South Dakota’s bill lost in a 21-13 Senate vote. That’s a swing of 5 senators. If merely 5 senators felt more pressure from South Dakotans than they did from special interests, South Dakota would have a shared parenting statute. We should commend the remaining politicians in South Dakota’s Senate for doing the right thing.

    In Minnesota … well, Minnesota is a travesty. That bill passed, and on May 24, 2012 Governor Mark Dayton vetoed it. Governor Dayton claimed that both sides made “compelling arguments,” but because the “ramifications” of the legislation were “uncertain,” he decided to single-handedly overrule the will of his constituents and their representatives. Mr. Governor, unless you are ending slavery or beginning women’s suffrage, you will likely never have the benefit of “certainty” in your political career. Again, we should praise the Minnesotan politicians who voted for the bill.

    Six people. Six people stopped two states from enacting shared parenting. Six people do not indicate shared parenting is a distant hope – they indicate profoundly that it is an imminent inevitability.

    Mike Haskell is a divorced dad, shared parenting supporter and practicing family law attorney in Grand Rapids, Michigan.

    ACFC is America's Shared Parenting Organization

    "CHILDREN NEED BOTH PARENTS"

    The members of the American Coalition for Fathers and Children dedicate ourselves to the creation of a family law system and public awareness which promotes equal rights for ALL parties affected by issues of the modern family.

    ACFC is challenging the current system of American family law and policy. Through a national system of local affiliates and in alliance with other pro-family and civil liberties groups, ACFC is shifting the public debate to the real causes of family dissolution.

    ReplyDelete

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