Family law attorneys are seeing so much pain in our military families. Here is some news about veteran's benefits for PTSD that we should send on to our military clients, past and present. Many of them may be aware of this, but it never hurts to make certain.
The New York Times reported on July 7, 2010 that the Department of Veterans Affairs will make it "substantially easier" for veterans to receive disability benefits for post-traumatic stress disorder. The rules will apply to veterans of all wars, not just the most recent ones.
Under the new rules, first proposed last summer and scheduled to take effect as early as next week, veterans will not have to document specific events that may have caused PTSD. Claimants need "simply show that they served in a war zone and in a job consistent with the events that they say caused their conditions," according to the Times.
All things Considered reported on June 29, 2010 that Capt. Mike Clauer was serving in Iraq last year as company commander of an Army National Guard unit assigned to escort convoys when he received notice that his house was being foreclosed on by his neighborhood's homeowner's association. As if Clauer needed this worry piled on his day!
Clauer's duty assignment involved exceedingly dangerous work — explosive devices buried in the road were a constant threat to the lives of Clauer and his men. [Photo from Mike Clauer]
This NPR story wouldn't come about if we were talking about just one family. Clauer was halfway through his deployment when he got a bolt from the blue — a frantic phone call from his wife, May, back in Texas.
In an Op-Ed piece in the New York Times on June 16, 2010, Stephanie Coontz comments on New York State pending legislation that would, if enacted, let New Yorkers join the rest of the nation in what is called "No-Fault Divorce." What a breath of fresh air that would be. Presently, New York is the last state in the nation that requires one of the parties to be the appointed "at fault" person. The fault alleged might be mental cruelty, infidelity, or worse.
No-fault divorce could not possibly, in my mind, harm a family nearly as much as the need to find “fault” and worse yet, to litigate it. As a family law lawyer, it's always my goal when parents are divorcing, to attempt to make the process non-litigious. Why? These folks are going to be co-parenting for a long, long time. Those of us who are parents know that you don't stop being a parent when your children reach the age of 18. There is much, much more: the high school graduation, the college parents' weekends, college graduation, weddings, birth of grandchildren, holidays . . . and the list goes on.
While supporting the goal of giving fathers a large presence in their children’s lives, the Boston Globe took exception Massachusetts House Bill 1400, which promotes the concept of “shared parenting.’’ The Glove argued that the bill, pending in the MA Joint Committee on the Judiciary, is “too broad an approach to a challenging issue that demands nuanced, case-by-case decisions based on the best interests of the child,” and rejected the bill as a solution to the argument that fathers aren’t getting fair court hearings.
Like other shared parenting legislation pending in other states, the MA proposed legislation would create a legal presumption for joint custody unless there is evidence of child abuse or neglect. The MA legislation would not eliminate a judge’s right to award sole custody to one parent, however it would require judges to give written justification to support decisions rejecting an automatic grant of joint custody.
I represent a fair number of service members, both male and female. Usually, I don't get to meet them and most everything is done by email or telephone. But sometimes, I do get to know them--some better than others.
This video came to me today in an email. Having heard some of the stories, having seen some of the fallout with families, children and the service members themselves, I am always concerned that they are appreciated for their service and their sacrifices. The video shows a wonderful way to express your gratitude. It's not about whether these military operations are something you approve or disapprove. It's about saying "Thank you for being there for me, for my family, for our country. Thank you for your sacrifices." And please, pass it along.
Young parents are finding impossible to stay employed for lack of child care assistance. The jobless rate hovers near double digits. 6.7 million people have been unemployed for six months or longer, and yet some states are cutting back child care subsidies, making it impossible for some parents who lack help from friend or families to watch the kiddos.
Ben Stevens of the South Carolina Family Law Blog said on May 12th that the South Carolina Legislature is considering drastically increasing certain Court filing fees. For those in South Carolina, the proposed increases would increase filing fees (except for child support enforcement or modification) from $150 to $200; (b) increase the filing fee for Motions from $25 to $75; and (c) would impose a new fee of $50 per deposition. Michigan has recently increased filing fees as well.
And there's more! How many of us really look at old family photos in an album? I suspect not many. Also, old print photos degrade, the photos become brittle, the colors faded. New digital sharing produces photos you can view like a slide show on your TV screen.
Wayne County Circuit Judge Kathleen McCarthy ruled last Friday--a ruling that could have broad and precedent-setting legal consequences--that a Downriver woman has standing in her suit to get joint custody of three children she says she raised with the biological mother. The biological mother's attorney says he will ask for a stay and will appeal. If the decision stands up on appeal, it would be the first time gays, lesbians and unmarried heterosexuals in Michigan would have legal standing to obtain joint custody.
Dana Nessel, Renee Harmon's lawyer, said Friday that "This is a historic moment . . . Judge McCarthy's ruling really ushers us into the 21st Century."
Gene Weingarten's Washington Post 2010 Pulitzer prize-winning article "Fatal Distraction: Forgetting a Child in the Backseat of a Car Is a Horrifying Mistake. Is It a Crime?" has stimulated some comment on the Internet. Some constructive comment was available on the Post online about how to prevent these fatal or potentially fatal mistakes.
One possibility is an electronically installed weight-triggering device. If there is too much weight on a seat, an alarm is set off. Well, that would have to be really well designed for this particular situation. My front passenger seat has a weight-triggered device. If I set my heavy briefcase on it, a red light will show up on my dashboard saying that the airbag for the passenger seat has been de-activated. In other words, my brief case weighs as much as a small child, so the airgbag is deactivated to avoid death or injury to a child in the event of a crash. But I only know that if I am not distracted and I do see the red light on the console.
The Washington Post reports that President Obama mandated Thursday (April 15th) that nearly all hospitals extend visitation rights to the partners of gay men and lesbians and respect patients' choices about who may make critical health-care decisions for them, perhaps the most significant step so far in his efforts to expand the rights of gay Americans.
We've all read these stories: Infant left alone in car for hours. Infant dies of hyperthermia. I remember reading one news article about a mother who left 2 children alone in a car on a hot day while she went to get her hair and nails done. Both died. Horrifying. One thinks: Of course! These parents should be convicted . . . of something. Or should they?
The Washington Post yesterday won the 2010 Pulitzer Prize for Feature Writing for a story about several parents who made a horrible mistake. They drove to work. They parked their cars. They did not remember that they had not dropped their infant off at the day-care. The child died in the car as the temperature rose. What kind of parents do this?
Recently, the subject of designer babies came up on a Listserv in which I participate. The topic under discussion was Lesbian couples who have children born using in vitro fertilization (IVF) or sperm donors and the tragedies playing out around the country when these mothers split and the biological mother keeps the non-bio Mom from having contact with the child they've planned and raised together. I opined that there's got to be a way that we can combine genetic material, creating a "designer baby," so that, upon "divorce" both mothers will have an equal claim to custody and parenting time.
An article by Catherine Jun published in the The Detroit News in March 2010 should be of interest to all --not just divorcing couples who are trying to save money by handling their divorces on their own, but also by attorneys who are seeing a decrease in client base. The article confirms what I see time and again as I am sitting in the peanut gallery waiting for my case to be called for final hearing. So often, parties representing themselves are refused entry of a judgment because their paperwork is defective. The article should be of interest to Detroit area lawyers because of the local focus.
In today's economy, especially with health care insurers under high scrutiny, family law practitioners and families in transition need to be very clear about what is a "qualifying event" that may cause rescission of health care insurance in the future and also, perhaps, efforts by the insurer to recoup payments made for past medical treatments. In particular, folks should be aware that by the express terms of ERISA, the federal law governing employer-provided insurance, entry of a judgment of separate maintenance, as well as a divorce, is a "qualifying event" that means an employee's spouse or former spouse is no longer entitled to be covered under the employer insurance plan.
In a case for publication, In Re Beck, decided March 4, 2010, the Michigan court of appeals held that the termination of parental rights arising out of a neglect or abuse case does not end a parent's obligation to pay child support.
The father whose parental rights were terminated argued that the trial court violated his due process rights by providing in the termination order that his “[c]hild support and other support for the children shall continue.” He did not appeal the termination order itself.
Good grief! A divorce with $19 million dollars in attorney fees? According to
the LA Times, the divorce between the Dodgers' owner Frank McCourt and his wife Jamie McCourt has already cost that much and the parties haven't even had a trial yet! Teams of lawyers and accountants are working on the case.
According to the Times:
A palindrome is a word that may be spelled the same backwards and forwards. My last name "Hannah" is a good example. AARP has published a video on YouTube that is a little different. It is named "Lost Generation" and begins with with sentences written on a blackboard, read aloud by a teenager. This video reads the exact opposite backwards as forward. Not only does it read the opposite, the meaning is the exact opposite. It is a brilliant assemblage of thoughts and values.
This video was submitted by a 20-year old in a contest sponsored by AARP, and titled "u @ 50" I'm told that this video won second place, but what could possible top this? The concepts are simple, and yet they are brilliant.
See Lost Generation here:
From time to time, I write here of children's issues. Because I see so many clients with family law problems whose children have been diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder, I feel it's important to mention that a British medical journal, The Lancet, has "fully" retracted a paper it published in 1998 that suggested a link between measles-mumps-rubella vaccination and the subsequent development of autism.
According to the New York Times, an analysis of census data to be released by the Pew Research Center found that women are victims of a role reversal that is profoundly affecting the pool of potential marriage partners. Key points from the New York Times:
Whenever there is economic or educational disparity between spouses, a prenuptial agreement should be at the top of the list of pre-marriage things to do. You can read more about prenuptial agreements on this blog here.
The New York Times article More Men Marrying Wealthier Women may be read here.
Elma Lia Nascimento reports in Brazzil Magazine a few minutes ago that the Brazil Court has ruled that Sean Goldman should be taken to the U.S. consulate in Rio de Janeiro and should be returned to David Goldman, his biological father, a citizen and resident of the United States within 48 hours.
Nascimento also reports that in the meantime, Brazil's Supreme Court (STF) is reviewing a preventive habeas corpus filed by Sean's grandmother, Silvana Bianchi, who is asking for an injunction to prevent the boy's departure from Brazil without him being heard directly by the first instance judge.
According to the STF, she wants the court to hear the boy's testimony so he will be able to say if he really wishes to leave the country with his biological father or would rather stay in Brazil with his Brazilian family, the step-father, maternal grandparents and little sister. See MSNBC News here
1) Are you one of my many family law attorney subscribers / readers who needs to educate your clients about how to minimize their exposure to online material that can prejudice the custody battle, OR
2) Are you one of the many resourceful laypersons who daily access my Blog who needs to learn more about minimizing your online exposure in social networking sites to avoid prejudicing your custody battle?
In either case, you'll want to see this article, from the New York Times: The New Facebook Privacy Settings: A How To
See also earlier articles about Internet and cellphone security for the divorced and divorcing by [clicking here].
"Text messages are the new lipstick on the collar, the mislaid credit card bill. Instantaneous and seemingly casual, they can be confirmation of a clandestine affair, a record of the not-so-discreet who sometimes forget that everything digital leaves a footprint.
"This became painfully obvious a week ago when a woman who claims to have had an affair with Tiger Woods told a celebrity publication that he had sent her flirty text messages, some of which were published. It follows on the heels of politicians who ran afoul of text I.Q., including a former Detroit mayor [oh, him!] who went to prison after his steamy text messages to an aide were revealed . . . "
See my earlier post about discovery - how to subpoena ISP providers, phone companies, etc. here.
Lorne Gold did a terrific ICLE seminar recently about Kwame Kilpatrick's test messages and about how family law attorneys can discover and use text messages in a divorce case to prove infidelity, among other things. As for those texting steamy sexually-charged messages? The phrase "serial stupidity" comes to mind . . .
The NY Times article "Text Messages: Digital Lipstick on the Collar" may be read here.
Patrick Cavanaugh [“Cavanaugh”] and Melanie Smith [“Smith”] met when both were graduate students at the University of Rochester. After graduating in 2005, they moved to different states, but continued to maintain contact.
In 2007, Cavanaugh sought a personal protection order (PPO) against Smith. His petition alleged:
Following a hearing, the trial court granted Cavanaugh’s request for a PPO that prohibits Smith from stalking Cavanaugh and from “writing or communicating slanderous statements with Cavanaugh’s employer, community, & associates.”
A New York Times Blog called my attention to Working Mother Magazine on Tuesday called “Custody Lost ,” about the new reality of divorce and child custody for working mothers.
According to articles in this magazine, many women who are the primary wage earners in a marriage are losing custody of their children to their husbands when the marriage ends. Working Mother Magazine says that there are now 2.2 million divorced women in the United States who do not have primary physical custody of their children, and that an estimated 50 percent of fathers who seek such custody in a disputed divorce are granted it.
Last May, Maine's Governor John E. Baldacci signed a same-sex marriage into law without previous action by the courts. He was the first governor to in the United States to do so. Opposition to the law was so swift that not a single couple exchanged vows.
A referendum drive began and yesterday voters in Maine rejected the law after both sides had spent millions of dollars on the cause. Sometime after midnight, as the margin continued to grow and 52.7 percent of voters cast were for repeal, the Associated Press called the contest in favor of gay-marriage foes.
The Boston Globe article "Maine voters overturn state’s new same-sex marriage law" may be read here.
An interesting Court of Appeals case was released yesterday. Shelly Reynolds filed an action for quiet title to real estate after her former spouse and his mother filed liens against her property. David and Laura Reynolds answered and filed counterclaims of "false liens, slander of title, perjury and harassment." Shelly Reynolds answered the counterclaim and raised several affirmative defenses, including res judicata, collateral estoppel, etc. [That must have been one bitter divorce case.]
Sue Shellenbarger writes in the online Wall Street Journal on September 3, 2009
"Some experts lament that all that keyboard jabber is making our kids stupid – unable to read nonverbal cues such as facial expressions, gestures, posture and other silent signals of mood and attitude. Unlike phones, text messaging doesn’t even allow transmission of tone of voice or pauses, says Mark Bauerlein, author of a book called The Dumbest Generation: How the Digital Age Stupefies Young Americans and Jeopardizes Our Future."
Gina Calogero sent along this update on the $40,000 custody dispute over Dexter, a dog who was the center of a custody dispute in New Jersey. Ms. Calogero relates as follows:
"On September 23, 2009, after taking testimony in the second trial and reviewing written submissions and hearing oral argument, Judge Tomasello ruled that the couple will share the dog on a five-week rotating basis. Dexter was dropped off at the Houseman residence on Friday Sept. 25th and will be picked up five weeks later. My client Ms. Houseman is thrilled with the decision."
While researching the issue of texting while driving, I saw this public service announcement created in the UK. Believing this is something some parents might find educational (to say the least), I decided to include it in my blog. Imagine my surprise when I was not allowed to upload until I confirmed I am at least 18. Watch it and you'll see why. Then you decide. Is this something your teenagers should see?
As a parent, I'd share this with mine. What about you?
Yesterday in Salem, N.J, a judge ordered a former couple to share custody of Dexter, after the pair paid lawyers $40,000 in their contest for custody. Fox TV reports that one “parent” isn’t happy with a judge’s custody decision and may appeal.
Judge John Tomasello said Doreen Houseman and Eric Dare, cohabitants who lived together for 13 years but never married and broke up in 2006, must share equal custody of the dog. Dare told reporters he may appeal the decision.
Dexter was earlier declared to be the parties' joint property. Therefore, a suitable custody arrangement had to be determined. That judge said that there were three options: one or the other “parent” could get full custody or a joint visitation agreement can be decided.
Lawyers USA featured an article in late June about the types of information that can be found in social networking sites, such as Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn. The article correctly states that these sites have opened up a potential treasure trove of legal evidence, especially in divorce cases where a person’s whereabouts, “friends” and employment status are often relevant.
Most Michigan family lawyers are familiar with the S.M.I.L.E. program [Start Making It Liveable for Everyone]. Most, if not all Michigan counties run S.M.I.L.E. and attendance is often mandatory.
I do a fair number of military divorces and my client is not always available to participate in Michigan in these valuable co-parenting classes. In Grand Traverse, the Friend of the Court has been willing to approve 2 hours of counseling that is focused on co-parenting and issues that arise with children and divorce as a substitute. My clients then send a letter from the counselor describing the content of the counseling sessions to the FOC to get credit. Today I found another option.
"At age 12 losing your leg pretty much seems like the end of the world . . . My father taught me that even our most profound losses are survivable. It is what we do with that loss -- our ability to transform it into a positive event -- that is one of my father's greatest lessons. He taught me that nothing is impossible."
Thanks to Ben Stevens, who writes the South Carolina Family Law Blog for the heads up about new research showing that men can be adversely affected in various ways after learning of infidelity on the part of wives or girlfriends. Some of the adverse effects noted are a negative impact on performance at work, with potential for job loss, mental stress and risk of substance abuse, greater risk of exposure to STDs, higher risks of raising another man's child as his own, increased risks for financial consequences such as child support.
Numerous reports have surfaced about digital divorces among Islamic couples. A man has only to say "I divorce you" three times and the couple is divorced. And using digital resources has been the "in" thing to do.
Divorce by Test Message
The Arab News reported in April 2009 that a Shariah court in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia had approved the divorce of a young Saudi woman in her 20s whose husband sent her an SMS text from Iraq saying he had divorced her.
The husband, who is in Iraq to participate in what he described as “jihad,” also telephoned two of his friends who witnessed his marriage and told them that he had divorced his wife. ... The judge approved the divorce and told the woman that she did not have to go through the iddah (the 3-month post-divorce waiting period stipulated by the Shariah) as the marriage was not consummated.
SMS, text message, email divorce
Textually.org reported in February 2009 that even though women do not have access to mobile phones or computers, men use landline phones to pronounce the divorce declaration. "From 15 divorces that one study looked at in 2008, eight were pronounced via SMS, e-mail and over the phone," said Husssain. The phenomenon is taking place despite a decree by the All-India Muslim Women Personal Law Board’s which forbids men from divorcing by electronic means.
For a comprehensive look at digital divorce among Islamics, see textually.org at this thread.
Divorce by Facebook
While not the same thing -- not an Islamic divorce, there was the highly Facebook divorce where Mr. Brady wrote on his Facebook wall that It read: 'Neil Brady has ended his marriage to Emma Brady.'
Professor Barbara Glesner Fines writes today on the Family Law Prof Blog about Sham Divorces:
Basically, these are divorces in which the parties collude in order to transfer property from the marital estate to the spouse who doesn’t have a legal problem—in other words, the one who isn’t in danger of having the assets recovered by someone he or she has defrauded.
Now who could that possibly be? Could it be Walter Forbes, former chairman of Cendant Corporation, who is serving prison time for one of the biggest accounting scandals in U.S. history? The feds are trying to intervene in the divorce to prevent a property distribution that would frustrate Mr. Forbes’ $3.275 billion restitution order.
Then there’s the case of nine Continental Airlines pilots. The airlines is suing them, claiming that they allegedly obtained a sham divorce in order to trigger a cash pension payout to their ex-spouse, who they subsequently remarried. The problem? The Domestic Relations Order (DRO) resulted in a huge payout of the pilots’ pensions to their wives. After they received the money, they remarried.
You can read Prof. Fines’ blog article here, and find links to more information about these cases.
Yesterday we were talking about Facebook and mySpace pages. It amazes me how much personal information people will put up on the Internet for all the world to see. A wonderfully funny website The Disgracebook chronicles people's stupidity on the Web. The caption at the top: " The Disgracebook: Surprise! You just ruined your life with Facebook. Well played. "
Below the photo posted on Facebook is the caption "File under Facebook divorce" and the statement: "A furious fiancee dumped and dubbed her boyfriend "traitor pig" after catching him fondling another girl's boobs on Facebook just days before their wedding."
There is even a space for users to submit their own material.
There are only 8 pages of divorce-related Facebook submissions . . . not quite up to Google standards.
Should parties make public the messy details about their divorce? In this day of blogs, MySpace and YouTube, this question comes up more often than you'd think.
April 22nd’s New Jersey paper Asbury Park Press contains an article about an attorney, John Paragano, who allegedly posted a video of his estranged wife Diana Prior on a MySpace page. The video, titled, "Superdiva Meltdown," allegedly contained selected portions of a video deposition New York radio personality Prior gave in the parties’ divorce case. Allegedly, the portions posted were selectively chosen to embarrass her and to reveal personal and embarrassing details of her life.
On my way the forum . . .
Here's a link to some of the strangest divorce stories I have ever seen. And you know I've blogged a few . . . strange ones.
For example . . . how to divide the real estate . . . from Cambodia to you . . . [Click image to enlarge]
Recently on the Family Law Listserv participants discussed how long people can remain rent-free in their homes after foreclosure. The length of time varies from one property to the next, depending upon the amount of acreage and, often, contractual issues. However, an important aspect of this is that the owners must actually be residing in the home. A bank can take possession immediately if the homeowner abandons the property. An article in the New York Times today describes techniques foreclosure specialists are touting and using to evict residents who try to stay in bank-owned property, a process they call “cash for keys.”
A recent convention of real estate agents and property managers in Palm Desert, California attracted about 3,000 attendees of people cashing in on the boom in foreclosed properties. Reomac is the industry group that serves the mortgage default trade, specializing in selling the busted-up American dream.
According to one attendee, their business is booming, and they call it the "R.E.O. tsunami" which has flood the market with as many as 700,000 bank properties nationwide. Although the tide has been stemmed in recent months because of foreclosure moratoriums imposed by major banks and the Obama administration, opinion expressed at the conference is that real estate agents shouldn't worry because the flood probably has not reached its peak, but will likely continue for several more years.
This is bad news for homeowners in foreclosure and also for homeowners who wish to sell their homes because of relocations as they are transferred by their employers to other parts of the country or have accepted employment in other states after plant closures or a loss of employment.
Frankly, the gloating and seemingly insincere comments about how these R.E.O. agents don't want to profit from other peoples' misfortunes - offered up over drinks and caviar at poolside parties - ring false. This is especially true when in the next breath the speaker says there isn't enough inventory of distressed properties. This is a mess that makes divorce and separation all the more difficult and a family lawyer's task in guiding the client even more dicey.
You may read the New York Times article, Homeowners’ Hard Times Are Good for the Foreclosure Business here.
On Friday, April 4th the Iowa Supreme Court held unconstitutional a state law limiting marriage to a man and a woman. As a result, same-sex couples will be allowed to marry in Iowa by the end of the month.
The court’s decision was unanimous. Iowa is the first state in America’s heartland to allow same-sex marriage. Until Friday’s decision, only Massachusetts and Connecticut allow same-sex marriages at this time. California permitted them for about six months, but voters approved a ban in November 2008.
On March 25th, Jonathan Welsh wrote in the Wall Street Journal about devices used by dealerships, financing companies and leasing companies to disable vehicles if the drivers are behind in their payments. Rob Robertson of Austin, Texas, a member of the ABA Family Law Listserv, wrote today with this thought: How long will it be before we see this technology used in a divorce situation? Many family lawyers have clients with car loans that cannot be refinanced, and/or unhappy former spouses with credit woes when the ex doesn't make the car payment as ordered in the judgment.
Children in families served by family lawyers often have only Medicaid coverage for health care. The Center for Children and Families released a report on March 21, 2009 about Medicaid's role in health care reform.
According to the agency, Medicaid is a cornerstone of the U.S. healthcare infrastructure and should be maintained, strengthened and integrated with other components of the health care system as part of health reform. The agency's recommendation was based on a research report issued by the Georgetown University Center for Children and Families ("CCF").
Enough about custody fights over children. How about a dispute about who gets to keep the dog? On March 10, 2009, the Superior Court of the New Jersey Appellate Division approved for publication a decision in a case involving custody of the family dog. In Houseman v Dare, Ms. Houseman alleged that she and Mr. Dare had a verbal agreement after Dare broke their engagement that she could keep the pedigreed dog that they had acquired during their 13-year live-in arrangement.
The news is full of controversial topics these days. On February 20, 2009, the Michigan court of appeals said that courts can oversee a custody dispute between lesbian parents who adopted in Illinois, even though Michigan doesn't formally recognize gay relationships.
The court ruled 2-1 that the U.S. Constitution requires Michigan courts to recognize [both mothers] as adoptive parents. It reversed a trial judge in Berrien County who said Michigan's 2004 voter-approved gay marriage ban kept [one mother] from enforcing [her] parental rights.”
The focus of the majority was on the parent-child relationship, and not on the relationship between the two parents. Scott Bassett, an appellate attorney, said: "[This was] an odd decision in many ways, including the lack of documentation proving the Illinois adoption. The majority was uncharacteristically comfortable with this lapse. I don't think I've seen a panel ignore such significant record/procedural flaws in nearly three decades of appellate work. That makes it hard to give much credence to the substantive decision, irrespective of how one personally views the issue of gay/lesbian adoption."
The Chicago Tribune story may be read here.
The majority decision [Giancaspro v Congleton] may be read here.
By KAY HYMOWITZ
I know I am not alone in being angry about any doctor who would facilitate Nadya Suleman' s conception of octuplets . . . especially when I think about the huge cost of this project. That cost will be born by taxpayers, of course. Why didn't we get choice about whether we wanted to take on that burden?
Kay Hymowitz wrote in the Wall Street Journal online on February 20th, questioning who and where "Octodad" is:
Nadya Suleman, aka Octomom, is now the mother of 14 children -- eight newborns and their six older brothers and sisters. She has also managed to give birth to debate on issues as far-ranging as welfare, reproductive technology, health care and celebrity worship (Ms. Suleman is said to have an Angelina Jolie fixation). She has even generated heated discussion about the tort system, because the young mother could have paid for her miracle babies through the $168,000 awarded for a back injury she suffered in 1999 at a psychiatric hospital where she worked -- an injury, it should be noted, that did not prevent her from delivering, on Jan. 26, more living babies than once thought humanly possible.
You may read the rest of Hymowitz's editorial here at the Wall Street Journal Online.
Ann Routt, Deputy Director of Legal Services of South Central Michigan in Ann Arbor has shared the following valuable information regarding services to help individuals facing foreclosure:
Legal Services of South Central Michigan (LSSCM), through its Michigan Poverty Law Program (MPLP), has launched the Michigan Foreclosure Prevention Program. The program is a partnership with legal aid offices throughout Michigan, as well as housing counselors throughout Michigan and the National Consumer Law Center. The program has already begun accepting referrals and providing assistance.