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Stamford Family Law Blog

Extenuating issues complicate child custody case in another state

Connecticut parents who divorce typically understand that the process ahead is bound to be wrought with challenge. After all, severing marital ties, especially when children are involved, is a major life-change to which all parties need to adapt, which isn't always easy. If there are extenuating circumstances, as there appear to be in a recent out-of-state child custody case, things can get quite complicated in the courtroom.

This particular situation began several years ago when a 16-year-old girl entered a relationship with a 21-year-old man. The girl lived with her mother at the time, who was adamantly opposed to the relationship; in fact, the divide between the girl and her mother grew so wide, the girl wound up with no roof over her head. She and her boyfriend asked his parents if they could live with them, but the request was rejected.

Are you worried about hidden assets in divorce?

When you decided to sever your marital ties in a Connecticut court, you probably imagined various types of scenarios that might occur during proceedings. Perhaps, you and your spouse would disagree about child custody issues or need help negotiating a new parenting plan for life after divorce. Maybe everything would run smoothly and achieving an amicable settlement would be much easier than you assumed.

There's another possibility, however, that may also have run through your mind, which includes acrimonious courtroom battles regarding serious financial issues or assertions made against one spouse by the other. For instance, many people have faced situations where they suspect certain assets are being hidden from them so as not to become subject to property division in court. This state operates under equitable distribution laws, as do all but nine other states in the nation.

Is it or is it not a domestic violence incident?

There are various types of relationships, many of which can be quite complicated. From married couples in Connecticut, to parent/child connections, romantic relationships and siblings or step-family situations, people often struggle to get along. When arguments arise or relationship problems escalate, allegations of a domestic violence incident may be made.

Yale University conducted a particular study on numerous domestic violence issues. At least 300 women said they were abused by intimate male partners. Twenty-four percent of participants said their abuse involved being held at gunpoint.

Obstacles that get in the way of post divorce happiness

Connecticut couples who decide to end their marriages in court often face numerous types of challenges as they navigate the process. No one claims divorce is easy, and adults and children alike rarely survive such situations unscathed. Sometimes emotional scars run deep; for others, life after divorce is wrought with financial stress or child/parent relationship problems.

No two situations are exactly the same, but there are certain roadblocks common to many post divorce situations that can impede one's ability to move forward to a happy and successful new lifestyle. One problem involves thinking the grass on the other side is always greener. The old saying can be applied to those who want what their former spouses have rather than embracing their own states in life. Seething with jealousy because a former spouse enters a new relationship, makes more money or gets a brand new car does more harm than good.

Alex Jones' former wife asks for sole or joint custody of kids

Before a Connecticut court hands down a decision regarding children and divorce, there's often a lot of back-and-forth between parents in the courtroom. Typically, a judge listens to testimony and makes an informed decision based on existing laws, guidelines and children's best interests. Some situations are quite contentious, such as a current battle between Infowars star, Alex Jones, and his former wife, who seeks sole or joint custody of their three children.

A divorce case manager testified recently that Jones is very compliant and only wants what the "experts" say is best for his kids. Jones was diagnosed with narcissistic personality disorder. He was advised to seek counseling, and the court was informed that he indeed followed that advice.

Southern Charm's Ravanel and Dennis fighting over child custody

Fans of popular TV show, "Southern Charm" are familiar with two of its main stars, Thomas Ravanel and Kathryn Calhoun Dennis. The two actors are currently engaged in a contentious child custody battle regarding their two young children. Many parents in Connecticut may relate to this embittered situation.

When the couple first separated, the children are said to have spent the majority of their time with their mother. She is an admitted drug addict who has since been denied custody and directed to enter a recovery program. Dennis said that not being able to be with her children has been the most devastating experience of her life.

Child custody battles common to Connecticut parents who divorce

Many Connecticut spouses decide to untie their marital knots after having been married only a year or two. Others stay together for decades then split once they reach middle age. In fact, divorce over 50 is becoming more and more common as years pass. Regardless of whether a marriage enjoyed longevity before ending or barely got out of the starting gate, many couples who are also parents can relate to challenges regarding child custody, visitation and support.

It seems that issues concerning custody are not prone to social or economic boundaries. From parents who live relatively private and simple lives to popular Hollywood celebrities and their former counterparts, the court is used to hearing cases involving unresolved child-related issues. Many find it much easier to navigate the system by allowing experienced family law attorneys to act on their behalves in court.

Who determines child support in Connecticut?

Whether you were married a couple years or decades before you filed for divorce, if you and your former spouse had children together during that time, you'll likely have to resolve several issues regarding their care and financial support before achieving a settlement. Such topics often prompt many questions, including who, if anyone, will pay child support, how much that support might be and who decides. In Connecticut, there are guidelines to help those facing such situations navigate the family law system. 

In any situation where parents disagree regarding child custody, visitation or financial support in divorce, the court has the final say. In Connecticut, there is a set Arrearage guideline that uses a particular mathematical formula to determine payment amounts. This helps keep child support orders fair and consistent throughout the state.        

Can an international court supercede a child custody ruling here?

Many Connecticut parents are familiar with the problems that often arise regarding parenting plans and divorce. While not every child custody situation is contentious, it's definitely not uncommon for problems regarding the issue to arise. A woman in another state claims she was merely adhering to an existing court order when her situation suddenly became an international incident.

The woman is reportedly required to allow her son to visit his father in another country. She said she never dreamed the man would refuse to return the child to her, but that is exactly what he's done. He apparently got a court in Malta to rule that he could keep the child because he didn't like that the mother was home-schooling him in the United States.

Unprecedented child custody decision made in another state

What constitutes average Connecticut families nowadays looks a lot different than traditional families of long ago. Many children today are raised by single parents or by grandparents. While there are indeed still families where a mother stays home to raise the children and the father acts as sole breadwinner, the landscape of the American family has changed a great deal. As families evolve, so do child custody situations in divorce.

A recent ruling in another state has been considered the first of its kind. One of the people involved is actually appealing the ruling because he disagrees with it. It all has to do with a 10-year-old boy and three adults who have raised him.