Mom ordered to pay Daughter $300K for making false allegations against Dad

Federal Court Awards $750,000 in Damages Against Lori Handrahan for Conduct in Custody Case » SAVE: Stop Abusive and Violent Environments

Lori Handrahan, ex-wife of Igor Malenko, has been ordered by a federal court to pay her former husband $450,000 and her daughter $300,000. Federal District Judge George Z. Singal ordered the damages to be paid for Handrahan’s outrageous conduct throughout her custody battle over their daughter, Mila. Handrahan’s repeated false allegations against Malenko were so obviously at odds with the truth and her behavior so immune to judicial control that a Maine family judge eventually gave Malenko sole custody of his daughter. Handrahan’s visitation is conditioned on her seeking, receiving and benefiting from intensive psychotherapy. Since custody was transferred to Malenko in 2011, Handrahan has apparently neither seen nor spoken to her daughter, despite the fact that telephone contact is permitted her under the court’s order. Apparently, she’s paid no child support either, although that may be old news. The current state of her child support obligation, I haven’t been able to ascertain.Jail for false allegations - 2016

In keeping with her apparent desire to simply ignore everything having to do with her daughter and former husband, Handrahan refused to attend the trial in Judge Singal’s courtroom. Handrahan, it must be emphasized, is a highly educated, highly paid and highly functioning individual. She holds a Ph.D from the London School of Economics, speaks English, French and Russian and is employed as a lecturer at American University. Her articles appear regularly in various mainstream publications such as the Washington Times, the Huffington Post, and the like. Her last representation to a court indicated that she earns $105,000 per year.

So her refusal to appear in court and defend Malenko’s claims against her cannot be attributed to ignorance or lack of funds. If she had a defense to the charges, she could easily have made it, but she didn’t. That strongly suggests that she has none, and the findings of fact made by Judge Singal strongly indicate exactly that.

In his lawsuit, Igor Malenko sued his ex-wife for a variety of things including intentional infliction of emotional distress and defamation. He also sued on behalf of their daughter Mila for negligent and intentional infliction of emotional distress. The court found that he had proven all those claims, although it declined to find sufficient proof of others. Damages were awarded in the amounts of $450,000 to Igor and $300,000 to Mila who is now six.fam law scandal - 2016
Judge George Singal Enters Damage Award Against Lori Handrahan

Here are Judge Singal’s Findings of Fact, in their entirety.

1. Plaintiff Igor Malenko (“Malenko”) is an individual who resides in the city of South Portland, County of Cumberland, State of Maine. Malenko is the father, and court determined custodial parent of one minor child (“M.M.”), whose date of birth is xx/yy/2006.
2. Defendant Lori Handrahan (“Handrahan”) is an individual who resides in Washington, D.C., County of Washington, District of Columbia.
3. Malenko and Handrahan were married on May 30, 2006 in Bar Harbor, Maine.
4. A child, M.M., was born to Malenko and Handrahan on xx/yy/2006.
5. On May 16, 2008, Malenko filed a Divorce Complaint against Handrahan.
6. On May 23, 2008, Malenko served the Divorce Complaint against Handrahan.
7. Immediately after being served with the Divorce Complaint, Handrahan filed a Protection from Abuse Complaint (“PFA”) against Malenko on May 23, 2008, making false claims that Malenko suffered from mental illness.
8. As a direct result of this retaliatory and false PFA Complaint, Malenko’s fundamental and constitutionally-protected interests in the nurture, upbringing, companionship, care, and custody of his child were substantially infringed upon.
9. After the guardian ad litem appointed by the Court and the Court-appointed doctorate level forensic psychologist indicated that they did not believe Malenko was suffering from mental illness or any other defect that would prohibit him from having unsupervised contact with his child, Handrahan then began making false claims that he was a homicidal abuser, as part of her effort to destroy the father/daughter bond.
10. The court hearing the divorce case ultimately rejected Handrahan’s claims of abuse and mental illness and granted Malenko significant rights of unsupervised visitation with his child.
11. Handrahan repeatedly violated provisions of the Divorce Judgment, made unilateral decisions regarding the child’s welfare, and continued to do everything in her power to damage or destroy the father/daughter bond.
12. Finally, Malenko filed several Motions to Modify, asking the Court to grant him custody of the child.
13. Days after the Court sent out Notices of Hearing on the several Motions to Modify, Defendant forced her child to repeat false statements about Malenko sexually abusing her.
14. Defendant even forced her two year old child to make these false, rehearsed statements while Defendant recorded them on a video recorder.
15. Defendant persuaded her friend and advocate to listen to the false, coached statements, and then to contact the Department of Health and Human Services (“DHHS”) and claim that the child had made a disclosure of sexual abuse.
16. Defendant also persuaded her friend and advocate to make completely unsubstantiated claims that Malenko had child pornography on his computers.
17. As a result of these claims, DHHS launched an investigation.
18. As a result of these claims, Malenko’s rights to as a parent of M.M. were substantially infringed upon.
19. Defendant continued to coach and force her then two year old child to make false statements to others including Spurwink Child Abuse Program (“Spurwink”) investigators regarding
Malenko.
20. As a result of similar false claims by Handrahan’s friend, and as a result of more false claims that Handrahan made to Spurwink, the minor child was subjected to an invasive medical exam by Spurwink’s medical team as it looked for evidence of sexual trauma,which Handrahan knew did not exist.
21. Thus, as a direct result of the claims caused to be made by Handrahan and with Handrahan’s consent, her two year old child was examined by various medical professionals.
22. As a direct result of the false claims by Handrahan and her friend and advocate, the two (2) year old child underwent at least 8 separate interviews regarding alleged sexual abuse by her father.
23. The examination of the child’s genitals and the numerous interviews regarding false allegations of sexual abuse caused direct harm to the child.
24. The Portland office of DHHS unsubstantiated the claims on August 20, 2009.
25. Handrahan immediately demanded that DHHS at the highest levels reconsider this determination of “unsubstantiation.”
26. Dan Despard, the Director, Division of Child Welfare, then conducted a de novo review of the file and affirmed the decision made regarding unsubstantiation, by letter dated August 25, 2009.
27. On or about August 14, 2009, understanding that her and her friend’s false claims were about to be discredited by DHHS, Handrahan unilaterally took the child four hours north of her home in South Portland, to her vacation home in Sorrento, Maine.
28. On August 14, 2009, Handrahan then filed yet another PFA, this time in Ellsworth District Court, making more false claims that Malenko had sexually abused their child, and also making false allegations that “he was discharged from the [Yugoslavian] Army for pointing a gun at an officer’s head.”
29. Handrahan filed this PFA in Ellsworth District Court specifically to avoid Judge Jeff Moskowitz, the Portland District Court Judge who had presided over the divorce trial.
30. Handrahan wrote an article, published on June 2, 2009 in the Bangor Daily News, entitled “American courts have never been kind to women, kids,” in which she was critical of Judge Moskowitz’s decisions in the divorce trial.
31. As a direct result of this false PFA in the Ellsworth District Court, Handrahan stripped Malenko of his parental rights and ability to see M.M. for a period of time.
32. The PFA case was transferred back to Portland District Court, where Handrahan was provided a full opportunity for a hearing before Judge Jeff Moskowitz, on October 26, 2009.
33. Handrahan decided not to appear at this final hearing on her PFA, because, as she later testified under oath, it was “inconvenient.”
34. On October 26, 2009, after a full hearing, Judge Moskowitz dismissed the PFA from the bench, finding that Handrahan had presented “extremely precarious evidence of an extremely serious charge.”
35. On November 2, 2009, the parties entered into a Stipulated Order giving Malenko unsupervised visits with his child every single weekend, from Thursday through Sunday one week and Friday through Sunday the next week.
36. Malenko enjoyed the 2009 Thanksgiving and Thanksgiving weekend with his child for the first time in over a year.
37. Malenko and his attorney, Michael Waxman, became friends through this ordeal, and Waxman invited Malenko and his child to spend Thanksgiving with his children, his ex-wife (Carol Amoroso), her husband and friends, at Amoroso’s house.
38. Malenko and his child also spent the following weekend with Waxman and his children and his parents at the family’s vacation home in New Hampshire.
39. Upon hearing of the visits Malenko and his child enjoyed with Waxman, Handrahan filed a Protection from Harassment Complaint (“PFH”) against Waxman in Ellsworth District Court.
40. The PFH claimed that Waxman had harassed and threatened and harmed Malenko and Handrahan’s child.
41. Handrahan had no basis upon which to make these claims.
42. These were false claims made in an effort to prevent Waxman from continuing to represent Malenko.
43. Handrahan’s goal was to strip Malenko of legal representation so that he would have no way to defend himself in ongoing proceedings.
44. Handrahan knew that Waxman was not charging Malenko for his legal representation.
45. Handrahan filed this PFH in Ellsworth, once again, in order to avoid Portland judges, whom she believed had been conscripted by Waxman into a conspiracy to harm her and deny her justice.
46. On February 12, 2010, Waxman had a hearing on his Motion to Dismiss the temporary PFH before Portland District Court Judge, Honorable Roland Beaudoin, who dismissed the temporary order.
47. On March 4 and March 5, Portland District Court Judge, Honorable Jane Bradley, presided over Handrahan’s PFH Complaint against Waxman.
48. On April 7, 2010, Judge Bradley dismissed Handrahan’s PFH case against Waxman.
49. Handrahan also began filing numerous grievances against Waxman in the fall of 2009 and continuing into 2010. These grievances were part of Handrahan’s effort to prevent Waxman from continuing to represent Malenko
50. On December 2, 2010, Justice Alexander, of the Maine Supreme Judicial Court, filed a 65 page decision exonerating Waxman of the 14 counts of unethical conduct alleged by Handrahan.
51. Handrahan also contacted DHHS Child Support Enforcement beginning in November 2009 and falsely claimed that Malenko owed in excess of $7,000 in child support.

52. These false claims caused DHHS to withhold Malenko’s tax return in 2010 for months, causing a tremendous financial hardship for Malenko.
53. DHHS finally discovered Handrahan’s representations were false and turned the tax return monies over to Malenko.
54. In January 2011, Malenko finally was granted a hearing on his multiple motions to modify before Portland District Court Judge Jeff Moskowitz.
55. Handrahan attended this hearing and was represented by counsel.
56. By Order dated February, 1, 2011, Judge Moskowitz stripped Handrahan of custody of the minor child and transferred custody to Malenko.
57. By that same order, Judge Moskowitz also allocated decision-making authority regarding the minor child’s welfare to Malenko, if the parties could not reach agreement.
58. Judge Moskowitz also stated as follows: “the Defendant [Handrahan] has simply resisted Plaintiff’s [Malenko’s] efforts to be [the minor child’s] father at nearly every turn.”
59. Before and after this Order, Handrahan made repeated false claims to DHHS and to medicalproviders that Malenko was poisoning the minor child with methamphetamines and sexuallyabusing his daughter.
60. Just after this Order entered, Handrahan contacted DHHS and made claims that Malenkohad hit the child in the head with a frying pan.
61. These claims were all false.
62. As a result of these false claims, the then four year old child had an invasive medical exam conducted at Maine Coast Memorial Hospital with Handrahan’s consent.
63. Also, Handrahan herself took urine and fecal samples from her child and presented them to medical providers to be tested for drugs.
64. Handrahan also froze several samples of her daughter’s urine for later testing.
65. Handrahan also forced her child to state into a recording device that Malenko had hit her in the head with a frying pan.
66. Handrahan presented this false, coached, audio tape to DHHS.
67. As a direct result, the Ellsworth office of DHHS launched another investigation into Malenko, and interviewed the child on at least two occasions regarding the frying pan.
68. The child clearly and forthrightly stated that her father never hit her in the head with a frying pan, and that she knew Handrahan was saying this happened, but it was not true.
69. DHHS issued another letter unsubstantiating these false allegations on April 29, 2011.
70. On or about the week of June 13, 2011, Handrahan made yet another false claim with DHHS, claiming that Malenko was poisoning the minor child with methamphetamines and that Malenko possessed child pornography on his computers.
71. DHHS opened a file in the Biddeford office because Handrahan claimed that Waxman had “connections” with the Portland and Ellsworth offices, each of which had unsubstantiated previous claims.
72. Mark Dalton, DHHS Regional Manager for York County, has stated that there is no evidence supporting these claims by Handrahan. In a letter dated June 27, 2011, DHHS again found the allegations of neglect and sexual abuse against Malenko to be unsubstantiated. See Pl. Ex. 8b
73. Handrahan has also reached out to the administration of Governor LePage in order to try and destroy Malenko’s fundamental rights as a parent. These communications included false statements about Malenko in order to persuade Governor LePage to act on her behalf.
74. As a result of Handrahan’s behavior, M.M. was required to stop attending a day care center where she had become attached to friends and caregivers. M.M. has experienced social isolation as a result of Handrahan’s actions and threats.
75. Even though she testified in January that she makes $105,000 per year and even though the February 1, 2011 Order obligates her to pay Malenko $368.80 per week, Handrahan has repeatedly withheld child support payments. See Pl. Ex. 26.
76. Handrahan has evaded service of process and refused to accept service of process in connection with this case and other related legal proceedings.
77. On June 21, 2011, Handrahan arrived at Malenko’s residence and pounded on his front door screaming “give me my child!!!” “where is my child?” “I am here to take my child!!” “Why are you hiding my child??”
78. Handrahan proceeded to run around the house, peering into windows and screaming.
79. The child was in Malenko’s arms and traumatized, not wanting to go to her mother.
80. Malenko called the police and they escorted her off Malenko’s property.
81. Malenko obtained a PFH on his own behalf and on behalf of his minor child the next day, June 22, 2011.
82. On June 23, 2011, Handrahan sent her private investigator, Stephen Pickering, a former Maine State Trooper, to the home of attorney Waxman’s children and his children’s mother, Carol Amoroso.
83. The private investigator, Stephen Pickering, banged on the front door, walked around the property, and called Ms. Amoroso on the phone, demanding to speak with her.
84. Ms. Amoroso declined to be interviewed and was very shaken up by this conduct. As a result, she contacted the Yarmouth Police about this incident.
85. None of Waxman’s four children were at Ms. Amoroso’s house when Mr. Pickering approached the premises.
86. Waxman’s four children have been warned that there is a private investigator hired by Handrahan, trying to intimidate Waxman’s loved ones, and that if he makes contact with them, they are to refuse to cooperate and that they should contact the police.
87. By sending her private investigator to the home of Malenko’s attorney’s children, Handrahan intended to intimidate attorney Waxman and to deprive Malenko of further legalservices.
88. Beginning in the Fall of 2011 and following Malenko’s filing of this action, Handrahan initiated broad dissemination of defamatory material regarding Malenko on the internet.
89. Handrahan launched a site called “Saving M.M.” on which she placed a great deal of material, including many claims that Malenko has abused his child, has raped his child, has poisoned her with methamphetamines, has sold her to obtain money for a green card, has “trafficked” her, has been visiting child pornography sites on the internet, has placed M.M. in a pedophile ring, has conspired with others including his attorney, judges, district attorneys, DHHS workers and others. See Pl. Exs. 10-19.
90. Handrahan has made significant efforts to ensure that the material on her “Saving M.M.” website is viewed by many others and disseminated worldwide. See, e.g., Pl. Ex. 16.
91. Handrahan has sent these same false claims to multiple people by email, including multiple government officials. See Pls. Exs. 1-5.
92. Handrahan has posted many audio tapes on various sites also, which contain similar false statements regarding Malenko.
93. Handrahan also posted a picture of M.M.’s genitals on her “Saving M.M.” website. See Pl. Ex. 6.
94. Handrahan has also posted personal information regarding Malenko and M.M., including their addresses, Malenko’s social security number and employment information.
95. Handrahan coached her child (at age 2 ½) to make false statements about Malenko sexually abusing her into a video camera and she has posted that video on the internet. See Pl. Ex.27.
96. As a direct result of Handrahan’s defamation, Malenko has received threats from followers of Handrahan. Malenko has also been warned by local police regarding threats against him that they considered serious.
97. As a direct result of Handrahan’s defamation, Malenko’s life has been significantly and negatively impacted in many ways.
98. Malenko, normally an outgoing, friendly person, now lives in many ways like a recluse, refusing to initiate new relationships and anxious about his present relationships because he is well aware that the staggering quantity and disgusting quality of the online defamation could convince others that he is some kind of monster.
99. Malenko carries with him at all times numerous court documents and decisions from DHHS, just in case Handrahan makes new, false claims against him.
100. Malenko testified that M.M. has been negatively impacted by the vast quantity and malicious quality of defamatory material in that Malenko has been very, very concerned about permitting other children into his home without the parents in attendance. He has been so shaken up by the heinous defamation published by Handrahan that he feels completely on the defensive at all times around all children.
101. Malenko testified that he has been trained in and received certifications as a swimming instructor, that he formerly derived income and a great deal of enjoyment from coaching and teaching children to swim. As a direct result of the defamation all over the internet, Malenko no longer teaches any children swimming skills other than his own, and is unlikely ever to do so again.
102. Malenko testified that the defamation has negatively impacted his performance at his job, prompting him to lose concentration and make mistakes he would not otherwise have made.
103. Malenko wishes to pursue a career as a pharmacist but is concerned that Handrahan’s repeated, false claims that he has poisoned M.M. with methamphetamines could negatively impact that goal of his as well.
104. Malenko testified that he is seriously considering changing his and M.M.’s last names in order to avoid the stigma now associated with those names as a result of Handrahan’s internet postings.
105. As a direct result of Handrahan’s false representations, Malenko has been deprived of the love and companionship of his child for long periods of time.
106. As a direct result of Handrahan’s false representations, M.M. has been deprived of the love and companionship of her father for long periods of time.
107. As a direct result of Handrahan’s actions and false representations, M.M. has suffered physical and emotional harm.
108. In March 2012, Maine DDHS concluded that Handrahan’s actions on January 27, 2012 inflicted “high severity emotional abuse” on M.M. See Pl. Exs. 8a & 18.

You’ll notice that Finding #93 states that Handrahan posted photographs of her five-year-old daughter’s genitals on her website. (She’s since taken them down.) You’ll also notice that Finding #70 states that she accused Malenko of possessing child pornography. A brief Google search of Handrahan’s published articles demonstrates a preoccupation with pornography, specifically child pornography. Amazingly, Handrahan seems to have no concept that she herself has posted images on the Internet of her own daughter that could easily be described as child pornography. Needless to say, neither she nor the publications for which she writes ever disclose the fact.

The Findings of Fact made by Judge Singal show the extent to which a mother can go to abuse not only a father, but a child, the judicial system and opposing counsel. Up until Judge Singal’s order, the only price Lori Handrahan has been made to pay for her many years of utterly outrageous, malicious behavior is losing custody of Mila. Had the family court acted as soon as it became obvious the type of litigant Handrahan was, much of this grief could have been avoided.

As I’ve said before, Michael Waxman is nothing if not a tenacious lawyer. This man has represented Igor Malenko virtually free of charge through every imaginable hardship imposed by Handrahan. He now comes armed with a judgment against her and my guess is that he’ll collect at least a large part of it. After all, Handrahan is not poor. His civil suit on behalf of Malenko and Mila should serve as a template for other fathers who suffer the slings and arrows of false claims leveled against them by mothers who think that family court is an open forum for slander, libel and defamation.

Source: Fathers & Families

Source: Man Wins $750,000 in Damages Against Wife in False Allegations Custody Case » SAVE: Stop Abusive and Violent Environments

Bullied to Death ~ The Chris Mackney Story

 

Remember the Chris Mackney story we wrote about in April?

This unbelievable true story of murder, corruption, and the suicide of a broken man driven crazy by our family court system now has a Facebook page.
7aac2-fathers2band2bfamily2bcourts2b-2b2015

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The psychological effects of divorce.

Originally posted on Civil Rights in Family Law Florida: The psychological effects of divorce may touch divorcees, children, family and friends. Related articles It’s a trillion dollar industry… —  American Fathers

Fatherless Day Rallies In Every State and Across The Globe!!

Originally posted on Civil Rights in Family Law Florida:  – ALABAMA Alabama 2nd annual Fatherless Day Rally June 17th at 9AM 600 Dexter Ave Montgomery Al, 36130 Come out as we rally together… — American Fathers 

Science of Dads.

Psychological sciences at Kent State University, is one of a growing number of researchers to examine the manner in which fathers interact with their children. Her work is giving new insight… 

Children’s Rights : 3000.

Originally posted on World4Justice : NOW! Lobby Forum.:  Over the years I have been most inspired by the work of …

This is an EQUAL RIGHTS issue!

Where Fathers, Mothers, GRANDparents and Children from all 50 states will be uniting at their State Capitols to demand a change in Family law. This is an EQUAL RIGHTS issue and OUR Children … 

Families will be destroyed under the guise and by immunity bestowed upon Family Court Judges

PRESS RELEASE: Bill Scheidler, candidate for representative, district 26, position 1, states his platform | Corrupt Washington This is the vicious cycle of corruption, which can be illustrat…

Your Raising a Human Being NOT an Inconvenience

Originally posted on Civil Rights in Family Law Florida: Dearest Daughter, I love you so much.  Yesterday I gazed out the window watching fireworks and was really missing my angel but I cann… 

The family courts in the United States are biased against fathers.

– ALABAMA – ALASKA  – ARIZONA – CALIFORNIA – COLORADO – CONNECTICUT – FLORIDA – ILLINOIS – INDIANA – KANSAS – MARYLAND – MASSACHUSETTS  – MICHIGAN – MONTANA – NEVADA – NEW JERSEY – NEW YORK …

Women for Men

Remember the Chris Mackney story we wrote about in April? This unbelievable true story of murder, corruption, and the suicide of a broken man driven crazy by our family court system now has a Facebook page.

Please visit, read and be active on the site.

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Equality for Floridian Men…Wait Another Year

Ask anyone who has experienced a divorce or child custody battle within Florida’s Family Court system…

…and at least one side will tell you that they got a raw deal.

RealNewsRealFast – Bringing Local News to You!

FLORIDA – For years, Fathers Rights Activists have fought for the courts to treat men as equals when it comes to time sharing with children.

What happened to EQUALITY - 2016But despite overwhelming progress with women and LGBT rights, men say the pendulum has swung too far, and now they’re being left in the dark ages of equality.fathers-and-equality-2015-16

Alimony is another area of heated debate in family courts and in recent months both issues reached Lawmakers in Tallahassee for proposed reform.

Family Law Reform sm - 2016Last September, Senator Tom Lee (R-Brandon) filed Senate Bill 250 which contained language that would direct judges to use guidelines based on the duration of a marriage and income, when calculating alimony. If the measure were to pass it would essentially put an end to permanent and bridge-the-gap alimony.

Lee later amended the Bill to include language that would create a presumption 50/50 time sharing by both parents, believing that it is in the best interest of the children.

Causes.com/Children's Rights
Causes.com/Children’s Rights
www.causes.com/posts/966250
Causes.com

Continue reading Equality for Floridian Men…Wait Another Year

Family Court Ordered Psychological Evaluations

 

Psychologist Margaret Hagen, a professor and medical industry insider, details the very real danger of this booming business. In every state, a child can be taken away from a parent on the strength of five minutes of “neutral” testimony from a social worker.

A criminal suspect’s freedom or incarceration can depend on a superficial  psychological examination performed by an incompetent, overworked, or, at worst, paid-off psychologist. Parole hearings hinge on the testimony of similarly incomplete or fraudulent evaluations, allowing “rehabilitated” violent criminals back onto the street to commit more heinous crimes, with no accountability for the reviewing “expert.” Psych Eval Family courts - 2016

Unmasking some legal psycho-expertise as a total fraud, Dr. Hagen instructs readers to protect themselves and their families from being victimized by psychological testimony in the courtroom. In today’s frenzied legal climate, her insight and wisdom make for provocative, compelling and invaluable reading. 

Continue reading Family Court Ordered Psychological Evaluations

Family Law Reform, Inc. is an organization advocating family law reform and divorce law reform.

Our states’ family laws are antiquated and need reform.

demand-family-court-reform-florida-2015SB 668 PASSES THE HOUSE FLOOR AND HEADS TO GOVERNOR for SIGNATURE

EMAIL: rick.scott@eog.myflorida.com

TEL: 850-717-9337

SB 668 HAS CLEARED THE SENATE AND HOUSE FLOORS!

English: no original description

SB was passed by The House Floor today 03/08/2016.

What happens now?

SB 668 now goes to the Governor for signature. After the Bill lands on the Governor’s desk, he will have 15 days to sign it, veto it, or do nothing. If he signs or does nothing, the Bill passes.

NOW IS CRUNCH TIME!!

Once again the Family Section of the Florida Bar has opposed our bill, even though the time sharing language does not contain a rebuttable presumption.They have already written Governor Scott asking him to, once again, VETO our bill.

The National Organization of Women (NOW) is opposed to our bill and will also demand that Governor Scott Veto the bill.

One more time, I must ask you——If you want alimony reform—-to:

English: Rick Scott, 45th Governor of Florida
Rick Scott, 45th Governor of Florida (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

CONTACT GOVERNOR SCOTT NOW RESPECTFULLY ASKING THAT HE SUPPORT THIS ALIMONY REFORM AND TIME SHARING REFORM and SIGN SB 668 INTO LAW.

We have to be louder and more persistent than ever!!

Don’t wait!  Do this now and continue to do this on a daily basis until our bill is signed into law.  We need to show Governor Scott just what a force we can be. 

Greetings Family Law Reform Members: We need you to Contact Governor Rick Scott NOW: EMAIL: rick.scott@eog.myflorida.com TEL: 850-717-9337 SB 668 HAS CLEAR

Source: SB 668 PASSES THE HOUSE FLOOR AND HEADS TO GOVERNOR for SIGNATURE | Family Law Reform

    • Family Law Reform 2015 Legislative Update Webinar

    • Alan Frisher legislative update 12-08-14

    • Alan Frisher – alimony reform for upcoming 2015 legislative session

    • Alan Frisher Speaking at 2013 FAMILY LAW REFORM SUMMIT – Part 3

    • Alan Frisher Speaking at 2013 FAMILY LAW REFORM SUMMIT – Part 2

    • Alan Frisher Speaking at 2013 FAMILY LAW REFORM SUMMIT – Part 1

    • Channel 13 Interview – Alan Frisher discusses Florida Alimony Reform

    • Lee Kallett of St. Pete Beach, FL – Pays $4K in permanent alimony to lesbian ex-wife

    • Robert Rosenthal of Tamarac FL – Ordered to pay lifetime alimony at age 45

    • R.C. Lindsey of Stuart, FL – Has paid lifetime alimony for over 30 years

    • Caren Rose of Hollywood, FL – She and her husband can barely afford to make ends meet

    • Judy Michau of Broward County – Pays permanent alimony to her ex who does not work

    • Madeline Griffin of Brandon FL – 22yr old whose mom pays 65% of income in permanent alimony

    • Sue Stoeckel – Second wife of permanent alimony payer is afraid of having her income taken away

    • Nannette of St. Pete FL – Video 2 – Husband’s ex-wife is receiving permanent alimony since age 41

    • Jan of Clermont, FL – Boyfriend of three years pays permanent alimony

    • Dee Dee of Clearwater, FL – Boyfriend’s divorce held up for over four years

    • Nannette of St. Pete FL – Video 1 – Husband’s ex-wife is receiving permanent alimony since age 41

    • Tracy of Naples FL – Dating 10 yrs and will not get married

    • Eileen Flaxman – Her sister pays permanent alimony

    • Pippa of Naples FL – Husband forced to pay permanent alimony for over 20 years

    • Tarie – a WOMAN in Brandon FL – Pays 65% Gross Income in PERMANENT ALIMONY PART 2 OF 2

    • Tarie – a WOMAN in Brandon FL – Pays 65% Gross Income in PERMANENT ALIMONY PART 1 OF 2

    • I Remember by Alan Frisher

    • Florida Alimony Reform – Video Update June 13, 2012

      votefamily-us-2015

JUDICIAL ELECTIONS 2016 – SOUTH FLORIDA

While ten contested races sounds like a high number, it’s not.  In 2006, there were 16 contested races; in 2012 there were 12 contests; and in 2008 there were also 10.  Anyone remember the likes of Shirlyon McWhorter, Stephen Millan, Michael Samuels, Migna Sanchez Llorens, Bonnie Rippingile, Josie Velis, Gina Mendez, and Jose Sanchez-Gronlier.  Those were just some of the losers in 2006.

Here are your contested judicial races:

CIRCUIT COURT

Circuit Group 9 – Incumbent Jason Bloch v. Marcia Del Rey

Circuit Group 30 – Incumbent Rosa Rodriguez v. Daniel Espinosa

Circuit Group 34 – Mark Blumstein v. Renee Gordon v. Denise Martinez-Scanziani v. Luis Perez-Medina.  (Judge Gill Freeman retiring).

Circuit Group 52 – Rosy Aponte v. Carol “Jodie” Breece v. Oscar Rodriguez-Fonts. (Judge Michael Genden retiring).

Circuit Group 66 – Incumbent Robert Luck v. Yolly Roberson

Circuit Group 74 – Incumbent George “Jorge” Sarduy v. Elena Ortega-Tauler

COUNTY COURT

County Group 5 – Incumbent Fred Seraphin v. Milena Abreu

County Group 7 – Incumbent Ed Newman v. Lizzett Martinez

County Group 15 – Ruben Yury Alcoba v. Linda Luce (Judge Judith Rubenstein retiring).

County Group 35 – Incumbent Wendell Graham v. Antonio “Tony” Jimenez

ELECTED WITHOUT OPPOSITION …..

Congratulations to the following 17 Judges/former Judge who have been elected to a six year term with an annual salary of $146,080 (Circuit Court) and $138,020 (County Court):

CIRCUIT

John Schlesinger
Rodolfo “Rudy” Ruiz
Scott Bernstein
Bertila Soto
John Thornton
Jennifer Bailey
Barbara Areces
David Young* (former Judge)
William Thomas
Milt Hirsch
Samantha Ruiz Cohen
Nushin Sayfie
Monica Gordo

COUNTY

Michaelle Gonzalez-Paulson
Carroll Kelly
Diana Vizcaino
Laura Anne Stuzin

FERNANDEZ RUNDLE & MARTINEZ BOTH REELECTED

Also elected without opposition were State Attorney Katherine Fernandez Rundle and Public Defender Carlos Martinez.  For Carlos, who was first elected in 2008, this is his third term.  For Kathy, who is 66 years young, this is her seventh term.  She took over for Janet Reno in 1993 when President Clinton names Reno as Attorney General.  She was then elected in 1994 and reelected six more times.  Is this her final term?  What do you think?

NORTH OF THE BORDER

One note about the happenings in Broweird.  Our longtime colleague, ASA Abbe Rifkin, has qualified to run in Group 15 against three other candidates, including Incumbent Judge Matthew Destry.do-not-re-elect-bad-family-court-judges-2016

A lot of movement has taken place over the past few days in both the County Court and Circuit Court judicial races.VoteFamily-US -- 2015

florida judges - 2015Circuit Judge (Miami-Dade County)

Circuit / Group Candidate Status
11 / 3 Schlesinger, John C. (NOP)  *Incumbent Active    
 11 / 6 Ruiz II, Rodolfo Armando (NOP)  *Incumbent Active    
 11 / 9 Bloch, Jason Edward (NOP)  *Incumbent Active    
   Del Rey, Marcia  (NOP) Active    
 11 / 10 Bernstein, Scott  (NOP)  *Incumbent Active    
 11 / 12 Soto, Bertila A. (NOP)  *Incumbent Active    
 11 / 20 Thornton Jr., John W. (NOP)  *Incumbent Active    
 11 / 28 Bailey, Jennifer D. (NOP)  *Incumbent Active    
 11 / 30 Rodriguez, Rosa I. (NOP)  *Incumbent Active    
 11 / 32 Areces, Barbara  (NOP)  *Incumbent Active    
 11 / 34 Blumstein, Mark  (NOP) Active    
   Gordon, Renee  (NOP) Active    
   Jimenez, Antonio G. (NOP) Active    
   Martinez-Scanziani, Denise  (NOP) Active    
   Perez-Medina, Luis  (NOP) Active    
 11 / 39 Young, David Haris (NOP) Active    
 11 / 40 Thomas, William L. (NOP)  *Incumbent Active    
 11 / 41 Hirsch, Milton “Milt”  (NOP)  *Incumbent Active    
 11 / 45 Cohen, Samantha Ruiz (NOP)  *Incumbent Active    
 11 / 52 Breece, Carol “Jodie” (NOP) Active    
   Ortega-Tauler, Elena  (NOP) Active    
   Perez-Ceballos, Raul Alberto (NOP) Active    
   Rodriguez-Fonts, Oscar  (NOP) Active    
 11 / 59 Sayfie, Nushin G. (NOP)  *Incumbent Active    
 11 / 62 Gordo, Monica  (NOP)  *Incumbent Active    
 11 / 66 Luck, Robert Joshua (NOP)  *Incumbent Active    
   Roberson, Yolly  (NOP) Active    
 11 / 74 Sarduy, George “Jorge” A. (NOP)  *Incumbent Active
 11 / 76 Eig, Spencer  (NOP)  *Incumbent Active

dysfunctional-family-courts-2015Source: JUSTICE BUILDING BLOG: JUDICIAL ELECTIONS 2016 – UPDATE

Aggressive Divorce Lawyers Hurt Parents and Children.

YouTube Channel Art - 2015Couples in Florida who are considering divorce may think that hiring the most aggressive lawyer will be a beneficial move. In reality, these attorneys may be entirely counterproductive to a couple’s uncontested divorce, which would likely benefit instead from a resolution-based process. Despite commonly-held notions about aggressive lawyers, such attorneys can actually be detrimental to an everyday divorce case.852e6-florida2bcommission

Experts in Florida say it is important to distinguish between those attorneys who are passionate about their profession and those who are looking to be adversarial in order to drive up court costs. Unless you are dealing with a high-conflict divorce situation, an aggressive attorney might not be for you.

Most professionals agree that good attorneys try to resolve cases before they ever get to the courtroom. Only a select few cases can benefit from aggressive attorney tactics, as these practices can destroy any shred of a relationship remaining between the parties. Further, aggressive attorneys tend to provide costlier services because of the deluge of paperwork required to strong-arm the other party.

Many attorneys prefer a more collaborative approach to divorce because it prevents the children from becoming the victims of such contentious litigation. A passionate and enthusiastic attorney will know how to advocate for your rights without creating a maelstrom of negativity.the-mafia1

It is important to remember that aggressive lawyers are less likely to fare well because judges find their tactics to be fatiguing. Most judges maintain a mental list of attorneys they find intolerable. Those lawyers’ attitudes and behavior can negatively affect a judge’s ruling. Even scheduling complaints may be ignored by judges who find a particular attorney too difficult.

Most divorces do not require the services of a “bulldog” attorney who will create an adversarial environment. Instead, consider using alternative divorce methods that encourage collaboration and foster a spirit of cooperation among the participants. Assertive attorneys are assets; aggressive attorneys may be liabilities.Lawless America - 2015Aggressive Lawyering Is Counter-Productive

“Unfortunately, lawyers throughout the country are not exactly revered for their congenial nature or their civility toward each other. To make matters worse, TV, movies, and dramatic fiction play to an audience that expects lawyers to shout at the witness during cross-examination – ‘YOU CAN’T HANDLE THE TRUTH!’ The unfortunate ‘truth’ is that even in the real world, many lawyers market themselves as being ‘aggressive’ or are endorsed by other lawyers as such.

Continue reading Aggressive Divorce Lawyers Hurt Parents and Children.

Tampa Tribune Article – Eliminate Legal Representation in Family Courts

Sen. Jeremy Ring points out what is MISSING from alimony legislation including attorney fee caps, citing this as the single biggest issue in Family Law, and, without addressing this issue, he and many others cannot support similar proposed Family Law legislation. Curious then, that the Florida Bar FLS leadership now SUPPORTS destructive anti-woman, anti-child, anti-stay-at-home mother, anti-family bills like Sen. Kelli Stargel‘s and Rep. Colleen Burton’s Family Law/Alimony Reform Legislation. Clearly, Florida needs an independent Task Force created to properly study Family Law/Alimony Reform legislation to ensure that it is properly vetted, based on economic FACTS, and not harmful to Florida’s vulnerable mothers, women and children for whom attorneys fees are typically out of reach. In 2016, the bills again support wealthy breadwinners, disregard the issue of attorney fees, all while creating a wealth of work for Florida attorneys.

demand-family-court-reform-florida-2015Senate passes bill that helps give divorced parents equal time with their children | Tampa Bay Times  ~~  This article is very bias and discriminating. Perhaps you're not affected Good - 2015The writer cites extreme examples that very rarely happen in family courts to say that 50/50 timesharing may not be good.Lawless America - 2015 Perhaps the writer is a lawyer??dysfunctional-family-courts-2015

TALLAHASSEE — Judges soon may have little choice but to give divorcing parents equal time with their children.florida judges - 2015

The Senate on Tuesday passed a change to divorce law that would require judges to presume that it is best for children to split time equally with both parents and to issue a detailed order if they deviate from that standard.

Under current law, judges are supposed to consider 20 criteria, the child’s best interests and “frequent and continuing contact with both parents” when they write an order. But Sen. Tom Lee, R-Brandon, who sponsored the legislation (SB 250), says the child’s well-being is an end goal and that to accomplish that, it’s in the best interests of kids to split time evenly with both parents whenever possible.We need a winner - 2015

The majority of senators agreed, passing Lee’s bill on a 23-15 vote. The legislation hasn’t been supported by the House yet, but other changes to divorce law remain under consideration.

“As we look at other child welfare polices that we enact, we always start with the assumption that if it’s in the best interest of the child, we want both parents involved and that we want both parents to take responsibility,” Sen. Don Gaetz, R-Niceville, said.

Some research indicates children are likely to be better adjusted when parents have joint custody.

“ALL RESEARCH”

INDICATES CHILDREN ARE BETTER ADJUSTED WHEN PARENTS HAVE EQUAL JOINT CUSTODY (LEGAL AND PHYSICAL) !!!!

In 2002, Robert Bauserman, then a psychologist at the Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, compiled studies that compared children growing up in joint custody arrangements to those living with one parent.

In general, Bauserman found, children who spent some time with each parent had fewer behavioral problems, higher self-esteem and did better in school.

Parents, on the other hand, tend to be more satisfied if they don’t have to split time with their children with an ex-spouse, according to Bauserman.

BULLSHIT!!! NOT TRUE!!!!!!

But opponents to the timesharing bill, including Sen. Jeff Clemens, D-Lake Worth, say there isn’t sufficient data to indicate that splitting time evenly between both parents is the ideal place to draw the line. They argue doing so could simply lead to backlogs in the courts as parents unhappy with their custody agreements ask judges to reconsider their timesharing.

Critics further raise concerns that creating a 50/50 starting point for court orders could prejudice judges and that it meddles too much with judicial discretion.

MORE BULLSHIT!!!!  CREATING 50/50 PRESUMPTION WILL ELIMINATE JUDICIAL PREJUDICE AND STOP ABSOLUTE JUDICIAL DISCRETION WHICH IS WHAT IS HARMING FAMILIES NOW!!!!

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Continue reading Tampa Tribune Article – Eliminate Legal Representation in Family Courts

Florida Family Law Reform 2016

We Passed the Judiciary Committee!
More Challenges Ahead!!
NARROW WIN FOR ALIMONY REFORM IN SENATE JUDICIAL COMMITTEE.
MORE WORK LIES AHEAD!Fair4Families - 2015

 

Alan’s Message:
Alan Frisher
Alan Frisher, FLR President.

Greetings Family Law Reform Members:

One bullet dodged, but the cannon is still pointed at us as the entitlement attitude rears its ugly head.
For those of you who did not tune in to watch the Senate Judiciary meeting, you missed a nail biting, frustrating, head shaking, time-limiting vote that literally went down to the last minute to give us a 6-4 win in favor of Senator Stargel’s bill, SB 668. Alimony reform lives yet another day despite controversial and oftentimes emotional testimony from many women.
Diaz de la Portilla’s friendly amendment to the bill was accepted amid objections from the many members of NOW (National Organization of Women). I still am shaking my head over this one because his amendment further clarified that, if the spouse seeking alimony in a marriage of at least 20 years refrained from working during that time period and now faces dramatically reduced opportunities to advance his or her career, the judge may equalize the incomes of the obligee and obligor until the obligor’s retirement.

Once again I reiterate that the NOW folk must define whether the independence that they describe is one word “independence” or two words “in dependence.” Although Senator de la Portilla ultimately voted ‘no’ on our bill (I expected as much), at least he allowed for the time certain vote that enabled it to pass through his committee. That was a huge win for us.The Truth - 2016

Darren Soto‘s amendment that called for a blue ribbon commission to be formed in order to establish the need for alimony reform, was nothing more than an attempt to appease his democratic constituents and colleagues. Considering that Senator Soto was a co-sponsor of our bill a few years ago, when it was less established (and less vetted out than it is today), it appears that his efforts were an attempt to water down the bill rather than continue to fight a controversial though necessary reform. It is a shame that he appears to have weakened his position despite prior support and we can only hope that he will eventually feel comfortable engaging in the fight in the future. Luckily, calmer, more rational heads prevailed and this amendment was voted down by the majority of Senators on the committee.

But even with this ‘win’ in passing the Judiciary Committee we still have strong head winds in front of us. As of now, the House and Senate bills are very different. The House bill has removed all time-sharing language while the Senate bill is still hoping to include it. Society Do Nothing - 2016If you will recall, the time sharing language is the most controversial part and was included originally by Senator Lee. While Senator Lee has created SB 250, a stand-alone bill that just relates to equal time sharing, he would still prefer to incorporate it into our alimony reform bill. This is unacceptable to Ritch Workman, the House Rules Chairman and our original sponsor of our bill, because according to Ritch, “the House’s version is a purely alimony-related bill. It is not germane to any other family law issues such as time sharing,” Our organization stands behind Representative Workman on this issue.
Ladies and Gentlemen, the cannon that I mentioned in my first line has now been fully exposed. In order to achieve alimony reform, real alimony reform…we must keep on writing and calling to Senator Lee and Senator Stargel asking them to remove time sharing language from the Senate version of our alimony reform bill.   Ultimately the bills need to match each other and the time sharing provision puts that at risk.
I can’t make it any clearer than that.
Please call and write to Senator Lee and Senator Stargel now asking them to remove the time sharing language from SB 668 in order to allow it to mirror the House version. Ask Senator Lee to allow his SB 250 bill to be the stand-alone bill that allows for time sharing. We need to convince Senator Lee that alimony reform is what is needed, and while equal time sharing is important, it should not be a part of alimony reform if it will stop reform from occurring.
Now, more than ever, we need your commitment to get involved with your time and financial help. We need to continue making the trek to Tallahassee for the next two committee meetings and to keep informing our legislators that there is a critical need for alimony reform, despite the entitlement attitude that seems to be prevalent in our society.
Thank you,
 

Alan

ca0a5-purple2bkeyboard2bcampaign2b4family2bjustice2bcover2b-2b2015HERE’S HOW TO WRITE THE COMMITTEE MEMBERS:

Continue reading Florida Family Law Reform 2016

Do Nothing Judiciary

THE THREE-RING CIRCUS

Dear Family Court Judge: 

(I have some thoughts that you need to hear, I am expressing this by and through my United States Constitutional Right to FREE SPEECH. If anyone reading this has an opinion and would like to comment, that is also YOUR RIGHT, so exercise it!)

Now, I wish I could say that you are simply ignorant. I wish I could say that you are being manipulated and coerced into doing what you do. Sadly, I cannot say either. The truth is, you are fully aware of the horse-and-pony show which performs daily in your “courtroom”. I have estimated that your 3 ring circus has almost 10,000 shows a year at each Courthouse in Riverside County.

That would be a total 30,000 “hearings” annually in which families’ rights are being violated, perpetrated against, falsely accused, manipulated, coerced, improperly represented, denied their right to confront witnesses (the anonymous caller especially) and denied due process that is guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution

They may call you “Judge” but excuse me “Your Honor” there is no honor as a Ringmaster of this federally funded menagerie.
Your circus elephants and clowns are disillusioning patrons while your courtroom cohorts collaborate to steal their children.

The big top show that is disguised as a legally binding and enforceable proceedings are actually killing families in a slow and painful process. Do you have any idea how devastating it feels when people, acting under the color of law, hold your children hostage while the huge railroad train called the judicial system runs you over? Then wondering every second of the day if your child is safe? It is torture for those parents who CARE about their kids and I know MOST of your spectators are caring, loving parents. I know because I have met them in the programs you shoved down my throat. 

When the children come to your show, you give them candy, teddy bears and Christmas presents, promising them safety yet you put them in homes of strangers and sexual perpetrators. Let’s be honest here, pedophiles lurk where children are, like those sick men waiting for children to walk by on their way home from school. It is a fact that children are far less likely to get injured, raped, molested or neglected at home with their parents than they are in foster care. If you would take the time to research, investigate and deliberate on the actual statistics of the child welfare system, you would know exactly what I am talking about. But you don’t, humm…why? Because your circus clowns feed on the peanuts that thrown to them for “buying in” to the cash generator. 

The Child Welfare System and all the “stakeholders” literally swindle children from their parents claiming that the children are not safe and that ripping them away from their homes is “in the child’s best interests”. What a charade! On paper and in the media, the Child Protection and Welfare collaborators boast that they are “Saving abused, neglected children by helping parents overcome their horrible faults but at least giving children a permanent and safe place to live.” However, the children must now also suffer from the trauma of being taken and isolated from their family and they end up with more scars than they would have being left in a home that they feel secure in. 

You really need to get down off your IV funded wooden horse and stop this terrorism. Stop CPS from falsifying evidence, fabricating documents, committing perjury, and make them provide solid evidence of “reasonable efforts to allow the children to remain in the home”. If you had any moral or ethical bone in your body you would ensure parent’s rights to fair and unbiased proceedings, diligent and fair legal representation, ensure children’s rights to the same, allow parents to speak for themselves if they wish, ensure all counsel provide their clients with copies of minute orders and that everything you actually said on the record is actually in the record. 

There are many things you can do to stop this child stealing whirlwind. Let’s begin with the information packet given to parents regarding the Juvenile Dependency process. This single piece of paper, folded in thirds to look like a leaflet, is the least informative slip I have ever seen. Surely, its real purpose is to limit the information parents receive. Other counties, like San Diego, who were investigated by the Grand Jury, at least provide a detailed timeline of the court process. The lame paper that Riverside County distributes would be more beneficial and informative if it simply said, “YOU’RE SCREWED!” or even, “Just bend over, let us stick it in your ass and, if you pretend to like it, we might return your kids sometime whenever we feel like it.” As a matter of fact, I think I will print that up and pass copies around the hallways and drop some off at the AA meetings. 

The Pantomime Petitions and the Derailed Reports that you allow admitted into evidence are rarely properly served upon the parents and in my case, never served to the child who was over the age of 10. You could ask the children to verify whether or not they actually were involved in the case plan and maybe the Social Workers will do it for real. And why don’t you allow the parents to submit responses and declarations on their own behalf? Oh, and this is the waving flag-how come hair follicle test results HAVE to be paid for by CPS to be valid? What a crock of shit that is! Its even more outrageous that those clowns you call the Defense Panel Attorneys NEVER OBJECT to anything nor do they ever prepare a response or answer to the petition. Oh, and how the hell can any of your “Orders” be valid since you NEVER sign them? WTF? 

And I don’t know if your clerk has a hearing problem or if she is directed and told to falsify the minute orders when you fail to make important and statutory rulings like “reasonable efforts” and other statements which ensure reimbursement from the various government funding accounts. Your boisterous speeches and assurances of protecting the children may pacify some parents but they are once again kicked while they are already down when CPS shoves a Minute Order in their face that says that your “Orders” are merely “recommendations” and that CPS has ultimate authority and discretion over all decisions. 

And how about the gross neglect of the social workers to provide legitimate evidence? Do you actually read the Petitions and Reports? Do you look at the attachments? Most likely not. I highly doubt that someone in your position who has taken an OATH to uphold the law, seek justice for all and ensure people’s rights would be so completely ignorant of a piece of paper, which is as important as a hair follicle test, that has NO DONOR NAME, NO DONOR ID, NO SPECIMEN NUMBER, NO COLLECTION SITE, NO COLLECTION TIME, NO LAB NAME, NO ID, NO RECEIPT DATE, NO REPORT DATE, NO CERTIFYING SCIENTIST OR ANY INFORMATION WHATSOEVER LINKING IT TO ANYONE AT ALL. 

Continue reading Do Nothing Judiciary