Constitutionalizing Family Law

| Section of Civil Rights and Social Justice |

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The Federalization of Family Law

Vol. 36 No. 3

Historically, family law has been a matter of state law. State legislatures define what constitutes a family and enact the laws that regulate marriage, parentage, adoption, child welfare, divorce, family support obligations, and property rights. State courts generally decide family law cases. But since the 1930s, Congress has enacted numerous federal statutes to address serious problems regarding family law matters that states have been either unwilling or unable to resolve, especially when the welfare of children is involved. Today, congressional legislation, decisions of the U.S. Supreme Court, and the participation of the United States in more international treaties have “federalized” more and more areas of family law traditionally left to the states.DivorceCorp - Consulted a minister and psychiatrist NOT Lawyer - AFLA Blog 2016

A multitude of federal laws now regulate and impact families; some specifically confer jurisdiction on federal courts. As a result, federal courts now hear a growing number of family law cases, especially those that involve complex interjurisdictional or full faith and credit issues. The Supreme Court has contributed to this federalization by “constitutionalizing” family law. It has repeatedly used the U.S. Constitution, in particular the Fourteenth Amendment, to extend constitutional privacy protections to increasing numbers of persons and to invalidate state laws in areas of law previously thought to be the exclusive province of state legislatures.

Internationalization of the law likewise contributes to federalization. As people and goods move freely across country borders, so do their family law issues and problems. The U.S. State Department now actively participates in the drafting of international treaties, working with the Hague Conference on Private International Law and the United Nations (UN) to address family law issues on a global scale. iinguanzo-v-rose-causes-20151The United States has ratified and implemented many international law conventions. The Supreme Court has noted the judicial opinions of the European Court of Human Rights in cases involving privacy rights of same-sex partners and the juvenile death penalty.

Congressional Action since the 1930s

For almost two hundred years, the fifty states regulated family law because the federal government did not. The Tenth Amendment left states with “[t]he powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it.” Beginning with the New Deal legislation of the 1930s, Congress has used its powers under the Commerce Clause, the Full Faith and Credit Clause, and the spending power to set policy. A brief look at the areas of child support and child protection illustrate how Congress has set the national social welfare agenda by passing laws, allocating money for programs, and requiring states to comply with federal regulations to receive funding.

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Concerned Citizens for Family Law and Alimony Reform

Concerned Citizens for Family Law and Alimony Reform

An Open Letter To Mothers With Daughter’s

It’s time to break this cycle. Our children’s future depends on it.

Today, I want to focus on women who are in the midst of a divorce/ potential custody battle with the father who wants to co parent in a shared custody arrangement. I also want to talk about women who date emotionally unavailable men, who also find themselves constantly in a relationship with men who mistreat them. There is a reason for this. If you think you have just had a string of really bad luck, then my wish is that you take the time you truly deserve, and ask yourself why you are stuck in this cycle, of choosing men who hurt or reject you.

Dear Mothers of Daughter’s,

Before reading my article today, I want you to go back in memory to your childhood, and ask yourself, what kind of man was your father? We will come back to this a little later.

The reality is if you are reading this, half of you, grew up in a divorced home.

Unfortunately, we live in a world where the divorce rate succeeds marriage. Children often become the victims…

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“The Change is Long Overdue” ~ Florida Senate Bill 250 for Equal Shared Parenting is now law.

Permanent alimony, defined formulas are key points in new legislation

By Paul Giorgio – Producer

Justice Denied - No Jury in Family Courts - 2016

MELBOURNE, Fla. – Major changes could be coming to Florida’s alimony law.

Alan Frisher, co-founder of The Family Law Reform advocacy group, said the change is long overdue.

“I think our laws are really archaic,” he said. “We haven’t changed our laws for the last 50 years in essence and now it’s time to really make the change.”

Frisher said there are five key points to the proposed law. In addition to the removal of permanent alimony and the ability to modify or eliminate alimony at retirement, the bill also defines a formula judges must use when determining settlements.

“We want to be able to give judges discretion, but we don’t want to give them so much discretion that there’s no consistency from one sector to another, because right now there’s no predictability or consistency,” Frisher said.

Currently if someone paying alimony remarries, the courts can view the new spouse’s income as ‘family income’ that is eligible for an upward modification in payment.

Under the current law, modification is also possible if a payer earns a greater yearly salary. Payers cannot be brought back to court under the new bill.

A similar bill was vetoed in 2013 by Gov. Rick Scott. That bill had language that would have allowed it to apply retroactively. Scott said it would have unanticipated results. HB 943 has eliminated that language.

Source: New bill could mean big changes for alimony in Florida

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Shoot the Messenger in Family Courts

Yes. They Shoot the Messenger in Child Custody/Access Cases | Gary Direnfeld, MSW, RSW

A parent called me asking for me to provide an assessment. I explained I do not provide court involved services anymore and explained why. The caller asked for a referral to someone who did. I offered the name of a respected colleague.

The caller emailed thereafter and included in the email messages that had been posted about the colleague on the Internet. The postings portrayed my colleague quite terribly. The caller wanted to understand how I could refer to such a person. My reply was this:

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The Tallahassee Thousand ~ Mark Your Calendars

We will be standing up and speaking up for our children.the-people-who-think-they-are-crazy-enought-to-change-the-world-are-the-ones-who-do

Children need both parents! Stronger Families & Stronger Children Build Stronger Communities

Bring your parents, grandparents, children, friends and family.

We will be 1,000 strong in Tally!!!

About the Venue — Saturday, November 5 at 9 AM – 6 PM

Stronger Families & Stronger Children Build Stronger Communities 

We are Fathers helping Fathers. We are parents helping parents. We are advocates dedicated to bringing a change to end fatherlessness in Florida.

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The Dysfunctional Family Court System Organizational Chart:dysfunctional-family-courts-2015

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WHEN are WE as AMERICANS going to STAND UP

…and no longer allow Family Courts to “Courtnap” a child for one parent;Parental Alienation - 2016

Or allow CPS to kidnap and murder our children?

Why is it so important we reform Family Law?

The Pink Slip Project - 2016

Why these problems constitute a sophisticated form of Racketeering, something a friend of mine recently named the “cartel of Family Courts”?florida-families-united-childrens-rights-florida-2017-8-1024

votefamily-us-2015112Over twenty people testified of the complete dysfunction of our family courts in Miami and all across the state of Florida:  https://vimeo.com/channels/878408.

LRSP Public Meeting Miami-Dade February 23, 2015 — from The Florida Courts 

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A corruption that is killing our children here and around the world:

CORRUPTION

Here in Florida, the number of children who have died under the mafia of the Family Court system is increasing at an alarming rate. Count went from 490 to 533 (+6 in a matter of days) in only a few months:

Thank you Miami Herald for standing up for our children.

We must unite to put an end to this madness.
If you are tired of seeing innocent children die under the care of the family court system, help us Raise Hell, and stand up for them.
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Broken Family Court System

Broken Fathers - 2015A Broken Family Court System:
‘What are You Prepared to do?’

Ignorance is bliss in some scenarios, and as a father having been involved in a contentious divorce and custody ordeal it was a luxury I found myself longing for at times. Facing a situation where one’s back is against the wall, in a court environment overtly hostile towards those who represent themselves, as a pro se litigant is a place parents should venture with extreme caution. In my situation it came to a point where in keeping up with my own case at times I began to become curious and observe what I knew to be odd behavior and activity within the court and its players.

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Broward Sheriff’s Office Child Protective Investigations Section is in a state of crisis.

Contact Florida Governor Rick Scott - 2016Broward sheriff’s child protection unit now ‘a shamble,’ former employee says

Investigators say children’s safety at risk

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla.Broward County is No. 1 in a category nobody wants to win, topping the state in the number of reported child abuse cases. With more than 15,000 cases a year, serious allegations are being made against the agency that handles those abuse complaints — the Broward Sheriff’s Office Child Protective Investigations Section, or CPIS, which many past and present investigators said is in a state of crisis.

“Absolutely children’s safety is at risk,”

…said one veteran investigator who recently left CPIS.

Christina Bullins, an agent for the International Union of Police Associations, which represents CPIS employees, said the union has heard complaints from about 50 investigators in the unit, starting with what she said are their staggering workloads. National standards for child protection investigators call for 12 cases at a time, but BSO records supplied to the union show that many of the BSO investigators are working double and triple that number, with three investigators working more than 40 cases each.

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Last testament of a loving father abused by the family court system and alienated from his children

The Chris Mackney Storypaao-fam-crt13

What the Post couldn’t print was that Chris committed suicide after being alienated from his children and subjected to years of psychological and financial abuse by the biased, anti-father family court system, his ex-wife and her lawyer. Here is his tragic last testament, which one can only conclude was for the purpose of his not dying in vain.

Last testament of a loving father abused by the family court system

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Women for Men

Chris MackneyThis August our 11-year-old son will begin the sixth grade at Chaminade Preparatory School in St. Louis, MO. It is an all boys Catholic school. Chris Mackney, to your left, graduated from Chaminade in 1986—the same year I graduated from an all girls Catholic school a mile away.

So it hit close to home when I read about Chris’s horrible, horrible story. Chris died tragically this past December in Washington D.C. Here is his death notice in The Washington Post.

What the Post couldn’t print was that Chris committed suicide after being alienated from his children and subjected to years of psychological and financial abuse by the biased, anti-father family court system, his ex-wife and her lawyer. Here is his tragic last testament, which one can only conclude was for the purpose of his not dying in vain. 

The question for those of us still alive is: What are we going to do about…

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