Live-In Child-Maid Allegedly Abused by Judge and Wife She Worked For in Pakistan

Ten year old Pakistani Girl works as a live-in maid. For two years and counting.

Her employers are a Pakistani Judge and his Wife.

Images of Girl appear on social media …

Revealing burns and bruises on her body.

Authorities get wind of the possible abuse of Girl by Judge and his Wife and begin to investigate.

But not before Girl’s Father takes the matter up with Judge … and negotiates a settlement.

Father seeks to have the investigation aborted and any potential punishment headed off.

But Girl’s accounts of her injuries point to abuse and torture. Although she did reportedly alter her accounts over the course of the investigation.

Independent medical evaluations appear to corroborate Girl’s accounts of abuse though.

Judge and Wife are arrested against Father’s wishes.

Girl is taken into protective custody.

It is not known whether Girl’s Father and Mother face any charges under Pakistani law.

Or with whom Girl will live once released from protective custody.

Twelve million Pakistani children reportedly work under inhumane conditions.



Family Court rules Twin Baby Boys Aren’t Related

Gay male couple in Italy want children.

Thanks to in vitro fertilization, the sperm of each of the would-be fathers was fertilized with a different egg donated by the same biological mother. That biological mother delivered the two baby boys in California.

When the couple returned to Italy and tried to register their sons’ births, officials refused because surrogacy is illegal in Italy.

Determined, the couple sued to be able to register the twins as their own. At trial, the Italian family court sided with the officials who had refused to even acknowledge the baby boys.

But an Italian appellate court partially reversed and found for the couple … sort of. The appellate court ruled that each partner could register his biological son as his own child.

But the other partner could not be recognized as a parent of, nor adopt his partner’s biological child.

And the twin brothers … were not legally related.

Counter-intuitively, an Italian organization advocating for gay rights hailed the ruling as favorable, because it did at least recognize each boy’s birth and Italian citizenship, and parental status of one gay partner.

Read more in this Washington Post article: These two baby boys are twins, but an Italian court says they aren’t brothers.


Toddler Drowns While Mother is Apparently “Intoxicated” … By Her Smartphone

Chinese Husband and Wife have four year old Son.

Wife and Son visit a resort with a swimming pool.

Wife and Son go into the pool.

While in the swimming pool with Son, Wife, her back to Son, seemingly becomes enthralled by her cell phone.

So enthralled, that Wife is apparently totally oblivious as Son encounters difficulty, struggles to stay afloat and eventually drowns in the pool after several minutes.

All while Wife – as well as other people in the pool – are just a few feet away.

Surveillance video captures the entire tragic course of events.

The resort is currently closed pending investigation of the incident by law enforcement.

If Wife had other children in her care, surely the local child welfare agency would have taken them into temporary protective custody during the investigation.

Whether the tragedy is ultimately ruled to be child neglect or freak accident, it should in any event serve as a powerful reminder that young children in a pool must be closely supervised, continuously.

Read more in this UK Daily Mail news article: Helpless four-year-old Chinese boy drowns in swimming pool while his mother plays on her phone just feet away.


Father Living with Son Under New Identities After Father’s Alleged Abduction a Decade Earlier, Seeks Early Release from a Four Year Sentence after Just One Year

Mother and Father, a veteran of the US Navy, have Son together.

Five years later, Mother and Father separate.

Father allegedly abducts Son and relocates with him from Alabama to Ohio.

Where they remain, under falsified identities, for the next decade.

They lead a good life and Son is a well-rounded honor student.

While Son is applying to colleges, he discovers a problem with his social security number.

Which leads to Father’s abduction of Son coming to light.

Father is ultimately sentenced to four years in prison for his actions after pleading guilty.

One year into his sentence, Father seeks early release from prison.

Apparently, for owning up to kidnapping Son and depriving Mother and Son of contact for a decade.

Mother and Son have spent holidays together since Father’s arrest.

If Father is released early from prison in Ohio, Alabama legal authorities may opt to prosecute Father themselves for interference with child custody.

Read more in this Associated Press news article: Dad who took boy from his mom in 2002 seeks prison release.


Retired Green Beret’s Pension Garnished for Child Support – for a Child That is Not His

Colorado Husband and Wife are divorcing.

Fifty-seven year old Husband is a retired Green Beret with twenty-one years of military service to his credit. He lives on his military pension.

In the divorce, Wife sought child support for her five year old son (Child).

The DNA of Husband and Child were tested to determine paternity.

The DNA test ruled Husband out as Child’s biological father.

Husband introduced that evidence in the divorce case.

And the Colorado divorce court held that Child was not Husband’s child and therefore Husband was not responsible for child support. The divorce decree states that there were no children of the marriage.

Despite that, Wife apparently somehow managed to get the United States Veterans Administration (VA) to garnish a substantial portion of Husband’s pension for child support.

Husband’s numerous phone calls AND submission of copies of the DNA test and divorce decree to the VA over a four month period did not deter the VA one bit though.

Finally, at his wit’s end, Husband contacted his local TV news station’s co-called Problem Solvers consumer watchdog team.

Luckily, the VA relented within a day of that.

This case is different from a far more common – and problematic – scenario where the presumed father doesn’t obtain a DNA test disproving his paternity until long after a court has already recognized him as the legal father of a child.

Here, Husband was on the ball and did everything exactly right.

The basis, if any, for the VA’s garnishment of Husband’s pension is not known.

But, by all accounts, Wife was clearly determined not to let the divorce court stand in the way of her collecting money from Husband.


  1. this KDVR TV 2 Fox 31 news article: Army veteran fights VA to stop child support payments for a boy who is not his
  2. this KDVR TV 2 Fox 31 news article: VA stops vet’s forced child support payments for child that is not his and
  3. this Task & Purpose news article: VA Forces Green Beret To Pay Child Support For Someone Else’s Kid

Wife’s Expected Award from Marital Minority Interest in Close Corporation Slashed Because Company Bought Back Husband’s Stock and Discontinued His Generous Bonuses

Husband and Wife are in a twenty year marriage. Wife seeks a divorce.

This is a contentious case. Nine years in the making.

Yes, you really did read that right and no, that isn’t a typo.

This is a complex case.

Husband is a shareholder in a family business (Company). A minority shareholder in a business founded by his father.

A profitable business. A business that had been known to pay Husband bonuses on the order of $250,000 per year before Wife filed for divorce.

But after Wife filed for divorce, there were some big changes at Company.

For starters, Company did a reverse stock split and bought back Husband’s stock. And once Husband was no longer an owner, Company discontinued Husband’s bonuses.

Wife argued that the discontinued bonuses should have been imputed to Husband anyway.

But the Illinois family trial court disagreed. Husband received fair market value for his stock. Husband’s father was left the sole owner of Company and thereafter received all of the profits.

Wife was unable to prove that the stock purchase was a sham and that the bonuses were later going to be paid to Husband. Or that Husband’s father or Company did anything improper.

So Wife’s award in the divorce turned out to be significantly less than she had expected.

Read more in this Expert Institute article: Economics Expert Evaluates Financial Obfuscation in Divorce Proceeding.


Sperm Bank Off the Hook for Seriously Misrepresenting Traits of Sperm Donor

Sperm bank describes Sperm Donor as follows:

  • holds PhD in neuroscience
  • has IQ of 160

To numbers of would-be mothers seeking a sperm donor for their prospective children, Sperm Donor sounded pretty appealing.

So those would-be mothers signed on and gave birth to babies using Sperm Donor’s DNA.

Only, later on, those same mothers discovered Sperm Donor’s identity and that, far from possessing a PhD in neuroscience, Sperm Donor was not even a college graduate. Worse, Sperm Donor was a convicted felon … and diagnosed schizophrenic.

Finding the gap between the “advertising” and the reality extreme and distressing, the mothers sued the Georgia sperm bank they had turned to.

Their legal claims were expressed in the legal language of product liability, negligence, fraud, breach of warranty and commerical-type civil claims for money damages.

A Georgia trial judge rejected every single claim for damages though.

It’s not that the judge was condoning the sperm bank’s conduct. Hardly.

The problem is that the judge concluded that the monetary claims were in substance claims for ” wrongful birth” … claims not allowed in Georgia as a matter of public policy. Roses by another name, so to speak.

The trial judge did permit the mothers to press their nondamages claim for an order seeking additional information about the Sperm Donor from the sperm bank.

The judge also paved the way for the mothers to mount an expedited appeal of his ruling.

This case is one of roughly a dozen throughout North America brought by mothers in the same boat as these Georgia mothers.

Read more in this Atlanta Daily Report article: Judge Tosses All but One Claim in Sperm Bank Suit Over Donor’s Background.


Young? Got nothing? Earn Next to Nothing? Getting Married? Wow, You Better Get a Prenup

Boyfriend and Girlfriend are talking about getting married. First time for both.

They are in their early twenties, barely out of college.

Wealthy families? No, not at all.

Truthfully, neither earns much or has much, or has any reason to expect to inherit much, certainly not anything for a good long time.

But they both want to have prenuptial agreements signed before they walk down the aisle.

Of late, this is increasingly popular among young people who are marriage-minded. But it wasn’t true of this particular demographic as recently as a decade ago..

Are twenty-somethings suddenly so much more knowledgeable and sophisticated about family law?

Well, that may be true to a degree. But that may not be the driving force behind this trend.

It seems to have more to do with the pervasiveness of technology in this mobile era, and the dominance of their youthful peers in the technology arena.

While not every twenty-something creates a Facebook like the young Mark Zuckerberg did, there is no denying that quite a few twenty- and thirty-somethings have – quite suddenly – struck gold, coding mobile apps and other internet software, and pulling off other innovative disruptions in the technology and new media realms. Rags to riches, practically in a blink.

And everyone knows that marriages hit the skids roughly half the time.

So, if that happens to them, they wonder: should my app really be split as though it were our app?

And, when things are good between the couple, often they are in complete agreement that it should not.

And a prenuptial agreement just reflects – memorializes – that understanding, for later, just in case.


  1. this Bloomberg article: Prenups for Ideas Are All the Rage With Millennials
  2. this Fox 5 News article: Prenups to protect your ideas? and
  3. this New York Times editorial: Should Couples Get Prenups for Their Ideas?

September is National Childhood Obesity Awareness Month

Childhood obesity is rampant. Even in intact families.

The causes are many, and probably include too little activity, too much stress and, in a nutshell, too much unhealthy food (think fast, convenient, cheap, junk food).

Contributing factors are also many, and may include inadequate meal supervision, insufficient time and insufficient money.

Might these problems be more common and more severe in single parent households, regardless of whether the children’s parents never lived together or no longer live together?

Especially in households in transition or which recently underwent transition?

Ideally, both parents would co-parent to fight this common enemy together, and stave off lifelong health problems that are beginning earlier and earlier in life today.

But even where that is not possible, either parent can still do something about it during his or her timesharing.

By the choices that parent makes, for meals and for activities with their kids.

Whether they fear their local child welfare agency will get involved in their lives, or just want their child to be a little healthier.


  1. this [Fort Lauderdale] Sun Sentinel piece: Family Meals Matter: Childhood Obesity Awareness month
  2. this National Responsible Fatherhood Clearinghouse piece:Supporting Healthy Habits: Childhood Obesity Awareness Month
  3. this Healthy+Active Before 5 piece: September is National Childhood Obesity Awareness Month and
  4. this piece:National Childhood Obesity Awareness Month

Tips for Getting Through Your Divorce … and With Better Results

There really are a great many tips that divorce attorneys and other professionals can offer for “getting through” divorce.

Across the broad spectrum of surviving with both body and soul intact. And the equally broad spectrum of not losing your shirt / ensuring your ability to acquire a new shirt in the future.

And the perhaps even broader spectrum of promoting your children surviving your divorce without being manipulated like pawns, to facilitating that your children don’t miss a beat and continue to have positive, close relationships with both parents.

Such tips could fill a book – a large one. But a few basic tips actually cut across all aspects of divorce (and child custody cases too) and transcend any particular issues in any specific case, no matter how unique.

A colleague has spelled them out again, and they are well worth repeating, again. In some sense, the first bullet point below really covers it all.

1. Help your lawyer – Every case and couple is unique. Your lawyer is the expert on the law, and legal strategy and tactics. You are the expert on your ex, and the facts and circumstances of your family and case. You are the only one who can educate your lawyer on what he or she should know to help your case.

2. Arm your lawyer – Teach your lawyer about your family. Preferably in detail, in writing. Writing it down will encourage you to think carefully and be complete. It will also promote everyone on your legal team being fully informed. And it will do so at the least cost to you.

3. Prioritize – You’ve gone to the trouble and expense of hiring the best lawyer for your case. No, you aren’t done there. It’s still your case. You must be an active hands-on participant. And how fully you participate sends a message to everyone involved in your case. It can be a good message or a bad message. A message that says you really care – or are just trying not to be bothered / hurt too badly.

4. Keep your eye on the prize and adapt – Don’t indulge your emotions. Pick your battles. Pace yourself. Never lose sight of the forest for the trees.

5. Don’t be a stranger – Keep your attorney up-to-date. Touch base. It ain’t over until the last vocalist to sing sings.

I’ll toss in a couple of bonus tips of my own.

  • Don’t go to the other extreme and overdo it.
  • Stop and listen to your attorneys. If you are overloading your attorneys with information that they keep telling you is not helpful for one reason or another, let it go. People sometimes get bogged down in (usually emotional) stuff that, while understandably important to them, just isn’t legally relevant to “no fault” divorce in Florida. Most family court judges have no interest in – and little tolerance for hearing – why things went wrong in your relationship and which of you is the better person, etc.

Read more in this Huffington Post piece: 5 Tips To Help You Through Your Divorce.