Family Law Blog – Custody Wars – Judicial tactics

The following post was written over one year ago. Laws often change and recent case decisions may impact how the law is applied. As such, the information in this article may not be current. We encourage you to contact our firm for information on this particular article and to make sure the analysis is still up-to-date.

By Stephen P. Haller

A recent news article in the NY Post revealed an innovative judicial tactic in a long running custody war between two litigants in a Connecticut court: At all future court hearings, the warring parents were ordered to prominently display two family photographs depicting their children. The judge commented that the children are “somewhere” in the mind of their parents but not “at the top” of the list. In this particular case, it appears that the parents are equally guilty of forgetting the old rule in divorce that one must love a child more than hate the other spouse. In many other cases, there is one incorrigible warring parent – one who seeks to alienate the children from the other or files false charges of abuse against the targeted parent. It is outrageous that parents who engage in this aberrant behavior still succeed and escape the legal process with their dishonesty (and damaged children) intact. But in a case where the controversy is fed with equal eagerness and disregard for the truth and the best interests of children, the tactic of photographic shaming instituted in this case could prove effective. Let’s hope so.