Posts Tagged ‘california’

As I was looking through my news feed on Facebook today, a video of attorney Gerald Curry popped up.  Many of you probably don’t even know who Gerald Curry was, but he became headline news about 11 years ago when he was chased down and shot by a man who was fighting a court-appointed trustee over money that he claimed the trustee was withholding from his injury settlement trust fund.  Mr. Curry represented the trustee in the litigation.   Mr. Curry survived his injuries and continued to practice until his death in 2012.  The video of this shooting follows.

Violence is not uncommon against attorneys (even their staff), from not only their own clients, but by the opposing party.  As can be gathered from the information regarding Mr. Curry’s shooting, even attorney’s who are not in Family Law can be victims of violence. It amazes me that the American Bar Association has not updated its article done in the mid-90′s, “Lawyers in Harm’s Way.”  This article revealed that 60 percent of family lawyers had been threatened by opposing parties, and 17 percent have been threatened by their own clients.  I believe that these percentages have probably increased since the mid-90′s, given the recent rise in violence in our world.

In June 2013, in California Lawyer magazine, a well written article by Wendy L. Patrick titled “The Dangerous Client,” talks about the increasing violence in our nation and an attorneys ethical duties a lawyer has to their clients and to the public.  For those of you interested, you can read this article here. As we all know, violence in the workplace has increased and it is a concern that I am sure many people have.  I know that I think about this almost everyday as I head off to work, especially working in the Family Law arena.

In case you were hiding under a rock this past week, or were just not listening, California became the 13th state in the nation to have equal rights for all last week.

But wait, don’t go running to get your marriage license yet!  Gov. Jerry Brown (D) issued instructions to counties to “begin issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples in California as soon as the 9th Circuit confirms the stay is lifted” which was done on Friday, June 28th.  A copy of the order lifting the stay from the Supreme Court regarding California Prop 8 can be found here.

However, there are reports that it could take as long as 25 days for some counties to begin allowing marriages again.  It is suggested that you contact your local County Clerk to see when they will be performing same sex marriages again.

It was reported that two of the named Prop 8 plaintiffs, Paul Katami and Jeff Zarrillo, were married on June 28th in Los Angeles.   Their wedding was officiated by Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa.

San Francisco resumed issuing same-sex marriage licenses during the Pride Weekend and is issuing licenses this Saturday and Sunday, from 9-5.

I am thrilled that California is back on track in equal rights for everyone!

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2012 annual report for this blog.  I thought I would share it and say thank you to all of you who followed me in 2012.  Hope to see you in 2013!

Here’s an excerpt:

600 people reached the top of Mt. Everest in 2012. This blog got about 7,500 views in 2012. If every person who reached the top of Mt. Everest viewed this blog, it would have taken 13 years to get that many views.

Click here to see the complete report.

Did you know that the Domestic Violence Awareness Month evolved from the first Day of Unity observed in October, 1981 by the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence.  The intent was to connect battered women’s advocates across the nation who were working to end violence against women and their children.  In October 1987, the first Domestic Violence Awareness Month was observed. That same year the first national toll-free hotline was begun. In 1989 the first Domestic Violence Awareness Month Commemorative Legislation was passed by the U.S. Congress. Such legislation has passed every year since with NCADV providing key leadership in this effort.

In October 1994 NCADV, in conjunction with Ms. Magazine, created the “Remember My Name” project, a national registry to increase public awareness of domestic violence deaths. Since then, NCADV has been collecting information on women who have been killed by an intimate partner and produces a poster each October for Domestic Violence Awareness Month, listing the names of those documented in that year.

The Centers for Disease Control announced last week findings from a ground breaking study that indicates domestic and sexual violence against American women at epidemic rates that affects “on average, 24 people per minute are victims of rape, physical violence, or stalking by an intimate partner.”  I was shocked to read these statistics.

As the grandmother of two young women, this concerns me.

In the first case brought by a survivor of domestic violence against the U.S. before an international human rights tribunal, the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) found that the United States violated the human rights of Jessica Lenahan (formerly Gonzales) and her children. The decision underscores that the U.S. is failing in its legal obligation to protect women and girls from domestic violence.

In June 1999, Jessica Gonzales’ three young daughters, ages seven, nine and ten, were abducted by her estranged husband and killed after the Colorado police refused to enforce a restraining order against him.

Although Gonzales repeatedly called the police, telling them of her fears for her daughters’ safety, they failed to respond. Hours later, Gonzales’ husband drove his pick-up truck to the police department and opened fire. He was shot dead by the police. The slain bodies of the three girls were subsequently discovered in the back of his pickup truck.

Gonzales filed a lawsuit against the police, but in June 2005 the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that she had no Constitutional right to police enforcement of her restraining order. She then filed a petition with the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights, saying that the inaction of the police and the Supreme Court’s decision violated her human rights.

In another study, nearly 4,600 U.S. children were hospitalized with broken bones, traumatic brain injury and other serious damage caused by physical abuse in 2006, according to a new report, making child abuse a bigger threat than SIDS.

For more information for California residents,  you can go to the California Partnership to End Domestic Violence website here.   You can locate a Domestic Violence shelter in your area on this website or you can call the 24 hour hotline at 1-800-799-7233.   If you know someone who needs help, you can also call the hotline.

 

Senate Bill 1476 by Sen. Mark Leno, D-San Francisco, crossed its last legislative hurdle Wednesday, when the Senate approved it on a concurrence vote of 21-13.  Under SB 1476, a judge could split custody, child support or visitation rights among three or more people who had acted as parents to the child.  To read my previous blog on the bill, here is the link.

It has now gone to Governor Brown for signature, after approval by the Assembly on August 27, 2012 and the Senate on August 29, 2012.  To read the bill waiting for signature, go to the link here.

 

On August ,8,2012, it looks like AB 1476, the new Family Law Parentage bill, was approved by members of the Assembly in an 11-5 vote.  For more detail on this bill, see my previous post here.   For details on who voted yes and no, I have included the information below.   On August 15th, it was ordered to its third reading .  If you would like to follow this bill, you can do so here.

Measure: SB 1476 (Leno): Family law: parentage.
Location: Asm Appropriations
Date: 08/08/12
Motion: Do pass.
Result: 11-5 (PASS)

Ayes – 11

Blumenfield, Bradford, Campos, Davis, Fuentes, Gatto, Hall, Hill, Lara, Mitchell, Solorio

Noes – 5

Donnelly, Harkey, Nielsen, Norby, Wagner

Absent, Abstention or Not Voting – 1

Charles Calderon

Enhanced by Zemanta

In an article in the JD Journal today, it was reported that the SB 1476 Bill proposed in California by Senator Mark Leno, offers the chance of radical social engineering and reform. The modifications sought in Family law and proposed, wants the statute to establish that a child may legally have more than two parents – thus altering prevailing notions of a family. Leno told the Sacramento Bee “The bill brings California into the 21st century.”

This bill is to amend Sections 3040, 7601, and 7612 of, and to add Section 4052.5 to, the Family Code, relating to parentage.   In existing law, a man is conclusively presumed to be the father of a child if he was married to and cohabiting with the child’ s mother, except as specified. Existing law also provides that if a man signs a voluntary declaration of paternity, it has the force and effect of a judgment of paternity, subject to certain exceptions.

This bill would authorize a court to find that a child has 2 presumed parents notwithstanding the statutory presumption of parentage of the child by another man. The bill would authorize the court to make this finding if doing so would serve the best interest of the child based on the nature, duration, and quality of the presumed or claimed parents’ relationships with the child and the benefit or detriment to the child of continuing those relationships.

The Uniform Parentage Act defines the parent and child relationship as the legal relationship existing between a child and the child’s parents, including the mother and child relationship and the father and child relationship, and governs proceedings to establish that relationship.  This bill would provide that a child may have a parent and child relationship with more than 2 parents.

Existing law establishes an order of preference for allocating child custody and directs the court to choose a parenting plan that is in the child’s best interest.   This bill would, in the case of a child with more than 2 legal parents, require the court to allocate custody and visitation among the parents based on the best interest of the child, including stability for the child.

Under existing law, the parents of a minor child are responsible for supporting the child.  Existing law establishes the statewide uniform guideline for calculating court-ordered child support. The guideline directs a court to consider the parents’ incomes, standard of living, and level of responsibility for the child.  This bill would, in the case of a child with more than 2 legal parents, direct authorize the court not to divide deviate from the statewide uniform guideline when dividing child support obligations among the parents using the statewide uniform guideline . The bill would instead direct the court to divide the child support obligations among the parents based on the income of each of the parents and the amount of time spent with the child by each parent, as specified. f a child with more than 2 legal parents, require the court to allocate custody and visitation among the parents based on the best interest of the child, including stability for the child.

According to Leno,  “Most children have at most two parents, but some children have more than two people in their lives who have been a child’s parent in every way.” And according to him confining parenthood only to two persons neglects the emotions and contributions of other persons who, in a modern world, should also be held in equal status with parents.

Not everyone is happy about this new two-and-more parent family concept and hold that parenthood in a family as a social unit is not amenable to “the more the merrier” concept.

I can see good and bad in this bill.  In reading the proposed new Family Code Section 4052.5, the court may deviate from the statewide uniform guideline and divide the child support obligations based on each parents income and the time spent with the child.  One of the biggest problems I see in this new section, is going to be the allocating of child support and the enforcement of the same.  Then again, this could be a good thing in both of the non-custodial parent’s views, as they will not be paying as much in their child support obligation as they would be if there was not another non-custodial parent in the picture.

This is one bill I will continue to watch, it will be interesting to see how it turns out.  What do you think about this proposed bill?

In an article I read in Bloomberg news today, Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa of Los Angeles stated:

“The more support we build in our cities and states, the stronger case we can make for extending the freedom to marry to loving couples no matter where they live.”  Same-sex marriage is illegal under California law.

“Law-abiding, tax-paying families and their children deserve the same opportunities, the same rights and the same responsibilities afforded to every other family,” said Villaraigosa, a Democrat, at the briefing in Washington, where the U.S. Conference of Mayors is meeting. He spoke in support of Freedom to Marry, a New York-based advocacy group that says bans discriminate against homosexuals and infringe on their rights.

As many of you know, same sex marriage is a hot topic in California.  It has been over a year since the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals heard oral arguments appealing the ruling of Judge Vaughn Walker’s 2010 decision striking down Prop 8 for violating the U.S. Constitution.   Below is the complete article in Bloomberg for you to read.

Mayors From NYC to Los Angeles Back Same-Sex Marriage – Bloomberg.

 

American Canyon High has become the nation’s first school to be certified as a “green school” by the Collaborative for High Performance Schools (CHPS).

The school has a geo-thermal system to keep the temperature constant. It has a newly built one megawatt photovoltaic system. In addition, Wi-Fi runs throughout the entire school so students can log on and keep track of energy use.

For more information and to listen to the podcast on this story, see the link below.

American Canyon School Leads Nation In Being Environmentally Friendly « CBS San Francisco.

//

Sheriff Ross Mirkarimi, 50, faces one count each of domestic violence battery, child endangerment and dissuading a witness for a New Years Eve incident with his wife as reported by a neighbor.  Sheriff Mirkarimi is the newly elected sheriff of San Franciso.

“No one is above the law,” Gascón said. “Whether this was the elected sheriff or any other San Francisco resident, this type of behavior is inexcusable, criminal and will be prosecuted.”

The sheriff’s wife has stated that the allegations are false and that she is standing by her husband and they will prove that the allegations are false, despite the neighbors statement that she has texts and a photo from Ms. Mirkarimi which show bruises.

You can read more on these allegations below.

Read more: http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2012/01/13/BAT91MONIR.DTL#ixzz1jSthurno

California – New Sheriff Faces Charges – NYTimes.com.