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Family Law Blog

May Victories!

By June 4, 2014January 4th, 2016No Comments5 min read

The staff at Minella Law Group is still buzzing over the recent victories we received on behalf of our clients.  May was a busy month at MLG with 4 contested cases and 4 successful outcomes!! We could not be more proud.

First, we successfully opposed a renewal to a domestic violence restraining order for a father of 3 minor children.  At the time the Domestic Violence Restraining Order (DVRO) was issued Father was unrepresented and was not aware of how impactful a restraining order is on your life.  The DVRO was issued for a period of 3 years for no contact with the mother.  Father is a military veteran who left the military on disabled status and was living in Canada with his family.  As a result of the restraining order every single time he crossed the border to access his medical appointments which were extensive he would be held for hours and it was a huge burden on him.  Additionally, he is a Native American Tribe leader and was not able to own or operate any weapons and therefore could not hunt for his tribe.  We had a 3 hour hearing at which point the judge found that Mom did not have proper motives for filing the renewal and her request was denied.  It was a long-awaited victor for Father!

Next, we represented Mother in a custody battle with her ex husband who was recently in a domestic violence altercation with his current wife in front of the son, which step-mom was ultimately arrested for.  We filed an ex parte request to suspend all visitation with Dad due to the fight that occurred in front of the son which resulted in the son calling 911 for help.  The judge suspended all visitation until a further investigation could occur.  Father missed his Family Court Services appointment and at the next hearing did not give any valid reason why. During that hearing, Father also lied repeatedly under oath and penalty of perjury about the circumstances surrounding the event.   We requested the court deny any and all visitation until further court order because of Dad’s actions.  The judge agreed and Mom was awarded sole legal and physical custody of the child until further court order. This was a wonderful outcome for the child and for his mother, our client, as well.

We also successfully opposed a move away request which allowed the child to stay in Dad’s care full-time.  Dad and Mom had a very contested custody case where Dad had a 23% timeshare with the minor child and was working on gaining joint legal custody against Mom’s objection.  In late 2013 we filed a request to modify custody to change the custody arrangement to joint legal and allow the child to spend equal time with both parents.  When Mom caught wind she began looking for jobs in different states and ultimately secured a job in Utah and she filed a request to move the child with her.  We opposed the motion and the parties participated in Family Court Services Mediation where it was recommended that the child move with Mom.  We decided that we would fight this recommendation and we had an evidentiary hearing on the issue.  We showed Mom’s unwillingness to allow any additional time with child when Dad would ask, we showed Mom’s email communication which was hostile and belittling, we also showed that the reasons for Mom’s move were vindictive and done with the motivation of keeping the child out of Dad’s life.  The judge agreed and ordered that the child would remain in Dad’s care full-time and Mom would have visitation rights.  This was a long overdue victory for this father!

Finally, we closed out the month with a contested termination of parental rights for a pending step parent adoption.  Bio Dad had not been in his son’s life for over two years, but when he heard about the pending adoption decided to contest the termination request.  The facts were very clear in this case, what was not clear was the active case in Indiana where the child was originally from.  Bio Dad claimed to have filed multiple custody modification cases in an active effort to see his son.  When the parents met with the social worker assigned to investigate the stories told were complete opposite.  Bio Dad lied repeatedly to the social worker about facts and events that took place over the last two years.  As a result, the recommendation was not in our favor.  We were lucky in managing to get the entire Indiana case file overnighted to us in time to file all the records with the court to verify Bio Dad’s lies.  We had a one day trial with 4 witnesses and 40 pieces of evidence to admit.  It was shown through testimony that Bio Dad was lying about several facts and had in fact not seen or communicated with his son in over two years nor had he made any attempts to do so.  After review of the evidence and testimony submitted, the Judge agreed with our position and ultimately terminated Bio Dad’s parental rights.  This will allow the child to eventually be adopted by his step-father who has been a constant in his life for the past 3 years and is the only father the child has known.  This was a wonderful outcome for the whole family and we were so proud to be apart of it!

We love to be able to share these success stories of our clients and are so proud to be a part of every one.  If you think you have a case that you need assistance with please call 619-289-7948, or click the button below,  to schedule a consultation at no cost. We look forward to helping you.