RI Supreme Court Places More Emphasis on Family than the Family Court

In one case, anyway.

The Rhode Island Supreme Court on Friday overturned rulings by the Family Court that had allowed a divorced woman and her two children to remain in Rhode Island for almost seven years despite an order from a North Carolina judge that they return to that state, where the children’s father lived.
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In concluding the Family Court erred, the high court deplored the case’s being allowed to languish “in a judicial morass for many years,” particularly when the jurisdiction of the Rhode Island Family Court was being challenged.
The years of delay to “complete a case that was both cast as an emergency and was one in which the authority of the court to hear the case was challenged, while two young lives hung in the balance, is simply inexcusable,” the high court said.

On this eve of Father’s Day, we have to ask: why did the Rhode Island Family Court deprive two children of their father for seven years? Is it because the court’s rumored bias in favor of one particular gender has a basis in actuality?
By the way, “languish in a judicial morass for many years”. Isn’t that an apt description of another case currently pending in the Rhode Island court system?

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paul kelly
paul kelly
14 years ago

Monique, I didnt even have to click on “another case”, at the end of your piece to know what case you were referring to—mine.I,ll be going in for round 40 or so this friday.

Curious Resident
Curious Resident
14 years ago

Having barely survived the hell of “Female” court, nothing they do surprises me. You can be sure if a Dad took his children out of state, and denied them regular access to their Mother, he’d be behind bars in no time.
It’s been years for me. My kids are almost adults. It saddens me to think of all the children who’ve suffered because of the biases of Female court.
A special Happy Father’s Day shoutout to all Dads denied a meaningful role in their children’s lives.

14 years ago

As a veteran of the RI Family Court, the sanitized version of how my friends and I describe the experience is this: If you wear a bra, you can get away with anything in RI Family Court.
For years, I have seen women overtly deny access to visitation or phone contact and also tell documented lies in front of RI Family Court officials…and nobody cares. Even court motions about such bad behavior are ignored. Meanwhile, money payments are the only leverage men have but judges threaten men with jail for non-payment while women who don’t make their similar divorce agreement payments to men receive no similar threats. The idea that connecting visitation access and cash payments so as to create an incentive for both parents to behave is not even allowed to be on the table for discussion.
There is no level playing field between men and women and there is no justice in RI Family Court. The players working in Court know it and it doesn’t even bother them.
The sad thing is what all of this does to the kids. They become nothing but pawns in the hands of any parent who wants to use them to extract vengeance against their former spouse.

14 years ago

I agree. Family court is a joke. My brother lost so much money in family court trying to see his kids, that he also was getting behind in his child support payments. It got to the point he just got so depressed, he left the state to find work of a more permanent nature to keep up with his child support payments, and hope the kids would seek him out when they got older.
Those poor kids grew up with an abusive mother with severe mental health and addiction issues. These kids were in and out of the mental health system and family court and the training school for years.
Thankfulling, they did see their father and have a relationship with them when they became adults until his untimely death a few years ago.
Family court isn’t interested in what is best for the children. Luckily, one out the three made out ok. She became a professional body builder and trainer, a wonderful wife and mother. The other two are a mess. One is a stripper who neglects her kids,and lives with an abusive boyfriend. The youngest one has severe mental health issues. A whole generation lost. Shame on family court.

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