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Cathy Meyer

Judges and Lawyers: A Major Problem With The Family Court System

By February 24, 2013

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If you have been through divorce then you are familiar with the rules and procedures that govern the legal process of divorce. Divorce is a civil action, and every state has rules of civil procedure that are supposed to be followed during the divorce process.

What you don't hear about -- but have probably fallen victim to -- are the unwritten rules. These are the rules that define how judges and lawyers conduct themselves with each other. These unwritten rules can have more to do with the outcome of a divorce case than the written rules.

It's my opinion that when it comes to the family court system, the only interests served are those of divorce lawyers and family court Judges.

When Lawyers and Judges Cover For Each Other

Most judges and lawyers will not report each other for misconduct or violations of judicial ethics. Judges especially can get away with bad behavior, because lawyers don't want to get on a judge's bad side. Lawyers know they will go before the judge again, and staying chummy with the judge can be more important than their client getting a high standard of care in a lot of situations.

I have a close friend who took her ex-spouse back to court seven times in an attempt to collect child support. She has a court order that he pay a certain amount per month and her attorney requested the judge sign an income withholding order so that her ex spouse's wages could be garnished.

It has been two years since her last court appearance and she is still waiting for the judge to sign the income withholding order and still living with her ex slow leaking child support payments to her at his whim.

What has her attorney done? Nothing, he is afraid of "pissing off the judge." And, according to her attorney pissed off judges take out their anger on attorneys and their clients.† I witnessed this happen during my own divorce and have heard story after story from men and women who were held hostage by attorneys who were afraid of damaging their relationship with a judge.

Attorneys who refused to file motions or petitions that would get the court involved and a client's problem solved out of fear of "pissing off the judge."

In my friends case there are legal avenues open to her attorney but he refuses to take action because staying on the judge's good side is more important than his fiduciary duty to his client.

Therein lies one of the major problems with the Family Court System. How can the system hold an ex spouse accountable when lawyers and judges can't or won't hold themselves and each other accountable?

March 1, 2013 at 11:17 pm
(1) Jennifer says:

This is only the tip of the iceberg about how problematic and corrupt the family court system is in the U.S. Children are being forced to go on visitations with biological parents who are in prisons – even young children of 3 years old – and children are being forced into “visitations” with biological “parents” who are drug addicts, alcoholics, sociopaths, mentally disordered, repeat criminals, etc. and NOBODY is checking up on them to make sure they are safe, properly cared for, etc. The supposed “parent” (all based ONLY on a biological connection to the child) ie they had a good time one night and a child was conceived …Not based on character, proper training in child care and good judgment, responsibility, stability, …. they are simply PRESUMED FIT as a “parent” and vulnerable young children who cannot fend for themselves are placed in their complete care. See the Susan Powell case in Utah – the mother “disappeared” – the “father” claimed she just ran off and left her two young sons – The court ordered the two young sons to go on”visitations” with their biological “father” and he then had the opportunity to murder them before he killed himself. Why wasn’t the court held accountable for sending these young vulnerable children to their deaths?

March 1, 2013 at 11:20 pm
(2) Jennifer says:

See the Katie Tagle story…a young mother who desperately tried to get a family court judge in California in 2010 (San Bernadino county) to protect her child when her ex-boyfriend and the biological “father” of her child threatened to kill her 9 month old infant son. The judge ordered that the ex-boyfriend get full custody of the 9 month old child because the mother wanted to protect her child from being murdered by the ex-boyfriend biological “father”. The court transcript shows what happened in the courtroom including the judge’s unprofessional and horrible conduct in accusing her of lying when she produced text messages as evidence. The ex-boyfriend proceeded to murder the 9 month old infant. Why wasn’t this judge charged with the murder? Why was he allowed to give full custody of the infant to a biological “father” who was threatening to kill him? Why was there nothing about accountability of a system that is causing the deaths and abuse of children in this country? Why was there nothing but a candlelight vigil in honor of the dead infant?

March 1, 2013 at 11:24 pm
(3) Jennifer says:

This is now 2013 – We need to look at our definition of the word “Father” – it is not simply about a biological connection to a child – it is about who is willing and able to be responsible, stable, healthy for the child to be around, good judgment, putting the childís best interest above their own, etc. These things are not taken into account at all when the court makes custody and visitation orders. (“presumed” fitness rules) . Also, there is a burgeoning industry for “fathers” filing custody cases against mothers – the court’s dirty little secret is that the more custody a “father” can get, the less child support he has to pay to the mother (his ex) . Also, it is a way to harass and abuse the mother legally using the child as a tool to manipulate, coerce and abuse her. Threatening a woman with the loss of her children – her children who are the most important thing in the world to her? This is the most abusive horrific situation possible. Let’s be honest here…. Why hasn’t this been recognized on a wide – scale basis ? An industry that thrives on the use of children as a tool to coerce and abuse mothers? An industry that doesn’t recognize the incredibly important role that a woman plays in her children’s life? That threatens instead to separate the children from her and not even ensure their safety or wellbeing? in addition, probably bankrupt her with exorbitant attorney fees and court costs?

March 1, 2013 at 11:41 pm
(4) Jennifer says:

The children do not benefit from being placed in dangerous, unhealthy situations, they are simply being used as the tool and the money that is being spent on fueling this legal “industry” is not going to the children at all. Is it any wonder then that we have so many children in crisis at this time? People need to wake up and see what is happening in their own country, their legal system, to the vulnerable children who are the future and get together to stop an industry that is causing dysfunction, destruction, where civil liberties are being violated on a daily basis and judges donít have any accountability for what they do or decide.

March 5, 2013 at 2:57 am
(5) Susan says:

Amazing! You hit the nail on the head! I know from my own professional experience how corrupt the courts are generally. But what the article and Jennifer’s comments describe is the exact situation with my sister and her son. Her ex, the teen’s father threatened and promised to kill her many times. The ex was abusive to her, when the child was an infant and she had to flee with the baby. The ex tried to push her down the stairs, while the baby was in the bathtub. Now a judge gave the ex sole custody of the child. The judge said: “Your wife is in the poverty level.” But the judge then ordered her to pay child support, and the court is garnishing her disability check. Our mother had to pick up the slack, so thus the ex indirectly has his hand in the grandmother’s bank account. My sister could not afford her rent, because she no longer was receiving child support. She had to move in with our mother. The ex used some of our siblings to turn her son against her, and quoted them to the judge. My sister’s spirit and heart are broken. She poured herself out for her son, who is now receiving many honors as he graduates from high school, including advanced placement. His excelling in school is due to my sister’s keen interest in his education. If what Jennifer says is true, why are these judges treating mothers like this? What has happened/is happening in our society? And what are the seemingly nefarious political influences?

March 16, 2013 at 1:11 pm
(6) oscar hugo says:

How come feminazi ‘Jennifer’ has five first comments. All Mothers are Women. Not all Women are Mothers. Fueling the Gender Wars will make Marriage obsolete. Well it already is. My Son know that Marriage is hazardous to a Man’s health.

August 10, 2013 at 11:27 pm
(7) Bryan says:

Mothers are granted too much in most family courts. There is no evation process to provide information on who the better parent would be. I have seen stable fathers who are great with their childeren lose their childeren to women who can’t keep a stable home or care what the best interest for their childeren are. Just because a female has an emotional bond with their child does not mean the father does not. If the father can provide a suitable home and a better life and raise his childeren to have more potential, then why are our childeren just given childeren to their mothers without any evaluation and forced to live degraded lives in some cases? There are two sides to every story, and there are some great females out there that do great jobs at parenting. I’m just saying that there needs to be more interest in what’s best for he childeren above all. I believe evaluations should be done before a hearing is conducted to provide a better outcome in the courts. Yes the courts should be held accountable for their actions. They should be charged with the crimes committed and allowed. As our soldiers take an oath to protect and defend our constitution and our nation is for the people by the people, we should not allow our courts to conduct as they have. It is time to end our tolerance and demand action to stop this corruption.

August 11, 2013 at 1:44 am
(8) Pete rSzymonik says:

I have worked in or for the legal industry most of my career. What happens in many states “family” court systems would not be tolerated in any other court of law. The situation has gotten so bad that “family” court have ground to a complete halt and are in a state of crisis in many states with over 80% of the parents now Pro Se because no one can afford the inherent dysfunction and corruption that is going on. Courts are routinely bankrupting parents and forcing the liquidation of retirement accounts – even children’s college funds (!) – all under the threat of imprisonment, to pay for a small army of “court appointed experts” who work to prolong cases so they can profit from the misery, as children and family suffers. Parents are today trading stories and using the power of social media to shine a bright light on this horrific problem – its’ 2013 and well past time for our states to act to reform their courts and demand much better – as has happened in Arizona and Maine.

August 11, 2013 at 1:46 am
(9) Peter Szymonik says:

Additionally – everyone please stop. This is not a man vs. woman or father vs. mother issue or problem. That is what the divorce industry itself uses to fuel all of this and blind people. This is about parents band children being abused by “family”" court systems that are taking away available asset away from parents as a matter of standard policy and practice and funneling the money to small army of well connected attorneys, AMCs, GALs, and “mental health experts.”

August 11, 2013 at 10:51 am
(10) Diana Eriksen says:

Great article!

” Judges especially can get away with bad behavior, because lawyers don’t want to get on a judge’s bad side. ”


Let’s vote for changes …Make lay person’s part of the Judicial Committee for disciplining Judges!

Person’s not “in” the group (non-attorneys) need to be on the board to discipline attorneys too!

Legislation needs to be made for those Judges and Attorneys who resign to avoid discipline for illegal and unethical acts from their boards! Prosecutors have too much discretion on which cases they prosecute and which to ignore!

Judges and Attorneys get away with breaking the law too many times and get paid and protected from public ostracism and penalties!

August 11, 2013 at 3:55 pm
(11) KathyEvans says:

I am totally aware of this.I have experienced it.Because of the anticks I have two granddaughters living in squander.No thought of how these kids will make it.To the courtsthes kids are nothing but a piece of nothing!!I am appauld and disgusted.On the comericials it says about bulling.What about thcourts bulling.I am extreamely upset and don’t know howto evn save these girls.But when and If something happens to them,I am sure Nancy Grace will ask,”Where was the family”?Well I am right here.Lost every penny I have.Thanks for allowing me to air my greivence.I just wish you were able to help.Thank you!

August 20, 2013 at 6:03 pm
(12) Cole Day Rain says:
September 3, 2013 at 5:06 pm
(13) Rocky D says:

The only difference between the Taliban and the family courts is that the Taliban are not profit driven, parent alienating, kick back accepting cowards.

September 10, 2013 at 4:34 pm
(14) John Q. Public - Victim says:

The family court system is the symptom of lawyers enriching themselves to buy legislative and executive branch offices. From these branches, lawyers effectively USURP governmental “checks and balances” – the intended design. The result:? Legislation that permits judicial fraud, collusion, and unethical conduct WITH IMPUNITY. The family court system has become a lawyer-money-tree… an auction house… where delays represent profit… and where highest bidder wins… regardless of law, stare decisis ( case law ), legal doctrine, rules of procedure, ethics, morality, and common sense. Lawyers EARN by denying due process. Why? Because they wrote the laws (legislative), and enforce the laws (executive). For example, Eric Holder is a lawyer who heads the DOJ/FBI. Obama is the President and a lawyer. Do you think either will investigate their fraternity?

The solution: The only solution is a NATIONAL REFERRENDUM ( a populist vote ) to outlaw lawyers sitting on legislatures or executive nranches of government. Confine them to the judiciary … to uphold OUR laws. Then, allow decent law-abiding leaders to deconstruct the maze of self-serving legislation lawyer-swine have constructed for themselves for decades and decades. Once this is done… OUR courts will function again… especially IF judges are held accountable for committing hardcopy ( documented ) fraud. Presently, they’re immune from prosecution. Really? I wonder who wrote that law…

October 22, 2013 at 12:37 am
(15) audrey says:

I have witnessed first hand the corruption in the divorce court system. My very well known divorce attorney took my ex husbands side for most of the divorce. My ex husband is a wealthy prominent physician in New York. No discovery was made on his finances, no witnesses that I wanted to call in were called, the depositions were constantly postponed and the judges orders were never followed. My attorney seemed like he was working for him and told me maybe we can get you on food stamps. I finalky switched laywers after a year and a half and most of my money gone, and the second set of laywers did the same exact thing. It was a completely bought case and my ex husband won because he had the money to pay. We have three minor children together, my salary was negligible compared to his and I was forced to sign a settlement agreement that gave us only the apartment for his half of child support that the children were born in. I received no alimony after an 18 year marriage, no school for the children, no college, no dental no medical, no caregiving absolutely nothing except an apartment . He probably owed me 10 times what he gave. He lied on his taxes got away with murder and even named his divorce attorney who was an ex judge the guardian of my children if something happened to both of us. And the judge turned over my case to a new judge 1 month before we settled. That judge was a man who never heard a matrimonial case before and told me he thought my husband was great and that I got the better deal!! Not only that they surprised me and forced me to sign 2 additional addendums the morning of court. In the past 2 years since my divorce I have seen 8 matrimonial attorneys and 2 malpractice attorneys to try and help me. Although they said they have never seen a case like mine no one wants to get involved with it. So I know first hand what takes place and when I tell people my story they don’t believe me but it is true.

October 30, 2013 at 9:40 pm
(16) DoesNotMatter says:

Yes…my son is experiencing the same thing. The Judge and the mother and their daughter lawyer are friends, so you know what that means. It should be considered bias in a courtroom when lawyers and judges are friends. Also you can report a lawyer to the ABA and/or the state bar association.

January 21, 2014 at 3:53 pm
(17) DL GREEN says:

This is the best and truest article I have ever read. It explains my daughters custody to the T,

February 5, 2014 at 2:19 am
(18) Yeti says:

It is tragedy what family court has done to my children and I, I will also include my x because of his “issues” he too has been exploited by the system. The situation could have been easily diagnosed and a plan implemented to protect my children and give them the nurturing peaceful childhood they deserved,… Bu no family court destroyed all that and put us in a trap with no escape. It is disgraceful how GAL, court appointed (so called doctors, therapists, mediators, judges,etc.) created so much damage . Our lives have been ruined and we can’t get help because who can trust a so called professional after so many have ignored the true problem to continue to collect money or whatever else they got out of harming mt family . Disgusting people who call themselves experts and take your time and money while using children to gain whatever they get out of it.

February 9, 2014 at 6:42 pm
(19) kathryn says:

the judge in my divorce allowed my now ex and his attorney to get away with a criminal act FORGERY they actually forged a prenup and gt away with it …. IM trying to find someone ANYONE WHO WILL HELP ME .. all because he (my ex ) is a well known dentist but anyway in 98 we had sined a prenup but in 2010 we tore up the original ( the one in INK) 2011 he cheated on me and i decided i was done to my surprise they brought up a prenup well an IMPERFECT ONE thinking i didnt have a copy of the original that we ripped upwell handwritting expert was on call but never called to testify his finding 120% NOT MY SIGNATURE WELL judge couldnt care less my attorney flipped last min and her i sit with NOTING 15 yrs of building his career i a stay at home mom no high school diploma and our house in forclosure he gifted his girlfrien our 36,000 we had in joint acc left a whopping 500 in and she used it to put down on their new town house nice rigt i sit her with 1,000 a month alimony figure that out he even tryed to claim bankruptcyduring our divorce this man makes 600,000 a yr someone please explain to me WTH can i do we were divorce sept30 2013 i wasnt told about appeal my my attoirney tryed pressing criminal cherges againts them but was told i had to go to civil court please help

February 23, 2014 at 10:40 pm
(20) beenthere says:

Ontario Family Courts are corrupt. Do you want to know how to spot a corrupt family court judge? Its Easy!!! Just look for the judge who is most “biased”

February 23, 2014 at 10:59 pm
(21) Rocky D says:

Family court judges employed by the province of Ontario alienate children from there fathers for profit. This is a fact and a daily occurance.

How does this make family court judges any better or different than the Nazi’s?

February 25, 2014 at 12:12 pm
(22) Rocky D says:

Family court judges will string you along while law firms drain your bank account.

Some day some one is going to get violent.

March 13, 2014 at 7:14 am
(23) julie says:

I agree that the family court system needs a major overhaul!

April 14, 2014 at 2:31 pm
(24) Cynthia says:

This is happening all over the country. I think it is time to collect the numbers and UNITE. there seem to be a lot small, groups. A house divided against itself cannot stand. It is going to take all of us Uniting to show these are not isolated incidents. this is happening to rich, poor, white black, all races and socioeconomic levels. We need to organize a day across this country to protest in every state at every supreme court house or state capital and demand the people we have put in office do something benificial. We are not angry, bitter, exes, as they have portrayed us. We are busy working, raising our kids and trying to fight. they simply wear us down until we sound like crazy people when we tell our story. If we unite the numbers will support that all of us cannot be bitter, crazy, money hungry exes. if you think that this does not affect you I will leave you with this
First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out–
Because I was not a Socialist.
Then they came for the Trade Unionists, and I did not speak out–
Because I was not a Trade Unionist.
Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out–
Because I was not a Jew.
Then they came for me–and there was no one left to speak for me
contact me at cojamalik@aol.com

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