Saturday, 29 June 2013

A childs point of view

The posting I am about to re-copy below is from a young girl who has not had a opportunity to 'be a kid'. She has been separated from her mother, her three other sisters and a home. I know this girl personally and know what she has been through. I was in her life when her family was whole and I was there when it fell apart. Over the past few months she has had suicidal pages up and a unhealthy obsession with suicide. This is the psychological scar from her families break down. She has had some help, is much better now and working through her feelings. This girl knows my door is always open to her and she has a support network that she can turn too. But her post below shows just how much this girl wants some normality to return to her life.

I remember when my mum and i used to be so close that i went everywhere with her. I remember when my dad and i would go for long bike rides together. I remember when we had a great bond. I remember when my family all used to be as happy as can be and there was never an argument between any of us but now its turned around completely. Mum and i arent close anymore in fact i dont even see her. Dad and i have lost our bond. He's always out at the pub now. I just want my family back to the way it used to be. No fighting no excuses to avoid me no being left home alone no neglection. I just want my family back.

From the Christchurch Press..................................

It would seem Christchurch Family Court is getting a bit of a bad reputation!
It would be interesting to see if any Family Court Judge out there is going to speck up about all this bad press the court is receiving? would any of them care to have a public debate on the issues being raised in the media at the moment? would any of their family members care to have a debate on the issues raised? I am even happy to have this debate in a COURT ROOM if your a bit scared (would hate to take you out of your comfort zone).
I will be buzzing around Christchurch Court on Monday Morning- fell free to approach me :)

Court hurts families

The two recent articles regarding the family court (June 17, 19) show the dominance of the collegiality of lawyers and judges that enable them to protect their social and economic position father than the best interest of separated families.

Most concerning is the lack of awareness that judges can show. The impact of family court hearings and judicial decisions consistently result in systemic abuse for all family members.

It is clear to me that judges may show empathy and concern for their colleagues, but rarely extend these qualities to applicants appearing before them.

All family court proceedings need to be heard with humanity, compassion and high standards of evidence, rather than the shrill, punitive, opinionated and bullying style of some family court judges. Family court applicants experiences and their advocates such as Steve Taylor need to be given greater credence and attention at this time of legislative change. That would be more helpful than the unusual inclusion of Garth McVicar and the sensible sentencing trust.

A M L Neilson

Community worker

Family court consumers

Upper Riccarton

Psychologist speaks out over corrupt family court

Craig C. Jackson

1/27 Kenwyn Terrace



Phone:        (04) 389 2291




29 June 2013


Principal Family Court Judge Laurence Ryan

Principal Judges Chambers

Solnet House

P O Box 10-167

The Terrace




Dear Judge Ryan


I write to you as a semi-retired registered educational and child psychologist who, from 1978, took a close interest in the establishment of the Family Court.

I made submissions to the then Select Committee as a foundation member of the Father’s lobby group, Families Need Fathers and also helped to establish the Wellington-based Equal Parental Rights Society.  On the appointment of the first Principal Family Court Judge Peter Trapski I lobbied for, and was instrumental in, training fellow psychologists as specialist report writers whose expertise lay in child development, maternal and paternal parenting styles and the effects of separation on children.  Judge Trapski was committed to implementing the recommendations of the 1978 Royal Commission on the Courts but sadly his tenure lasted for only four years when he stepped down to set up a private mediation service of his own in Tauranga.  As you know, Judge Mahoney’s tenure lasted a further 18 years until he too stepped down as a result of a public outcry with media at the time describing his Court as ‘Courts of Injustice’.  Your predecessor Judge Boshier in his limited tenure which was to last for only eight years, took various initiatives to try to reduce the involvement of Family Court lawyers with a ‘win-lose’ mentality and an adversarial approach thus setting up one parent to fight the other in often prolonged, expensive custody battles.  This made attempts at mediation and conciliation if not the reconciliation of the parties totally impossible, nor their amicable agreement to shared care of their children.

I am therefore very concerned given your reported comments in the media that you see no need to change the present system, a position also adopted by the family law fraternity and the equally powerful female violence-in-the-home lobby groups.  Your publicised claims that New Zealand’s family law system is well respected internationally is simply not true, is a falsehood and has seemingly been designed to mislead the public your Courts serve.  That distinction rightly belongs instead to the Australian family law system and associated family mediation centres.

The truth of the matter is that over its entire 32 year history the New Zealand Family Court has arguably done irreparable damage not only to fathers but to mothers, grandparents, foster parents and above all, children themselves, has not changed over that time span, and is unlikely to continue to do so for as long as you lobby to maintain the status quo.

When submissions were made by the fathers rights groups to the Select Committee on the Family Courts bill circa 1978/1980 details of six custody and access cases, one involving the actual death of a child in the mother’s custody, were submitted by the Fathers lobby groups to illustrate the pressing need for reform.

It is a measure of the Family Court’s resistance to change that, thirty-two years further on, details of seven cases of gross injustice in the Family Courts assembled by our lobby group, the so-called ‘Payne’ cases were not accepted to be heard by this year’s Select Committee, nor initially, the appalling Adam Cowie case.  Because of privacy issues these cases could have been heard in closed session but were not.  Press publicity was given to these highly questionable tactics since ‘horror stories’ from female litigants were apparently, by contrast, heard in closed session.  It is no exaggeration to describe these as badly botched, biased and mis-handled cases.

In my extensive submissions initially to the Ministry of Justice’s review of the Family Court a year ago and three submissions to the select committee this year, I have argued that the impetus for reform should not be held back by the family law fraternity with vested interests of their own nor by you charged with the responsibility of heading your Court over the next eight years, nor by the equally powerful women’s violence in the home lobby now largely discredited by its campaign of misinformation and distortion of the true dynamics of domestic violence.  For the select committee itself to suppress our ‘horror stories’ has also obscured the real and pressing need for reform.

Given on his own admission that Judge Boshier welcomed the review of his Court and had openly admitted that he had failed in his own efforts to carry through his own proposals, why did you not elect as his successor to carry forward his intended changes to your Court realising that it was the family law fraternity itself that had blocked and stymied his initiatives?

And were you even aware of what his intentions were and why were you not prepared as his successor to be more open about your Court’s many defects and shortcomings as he was?

In a 2010 speech to the Hawke’s Bay Family Courts Association on Friday, 13 May 2011, he said just this and I quote:-

“We need to be very careful about judicial involvement in deciding what cases come into the Family Court, which cases proceed and which cases do not.”

                                                                        Page 8

“If certain disputes are not to be resolved in the Court, they should be resolved elsewhere…”

                                                                        Page 9

“To date Parliament has not favoured forced resolution by any other than a Family Court Judge.  Could it be that in a certain class of dispute the view of a mediator should be binding?”

                                                                        Page 10

“When we introduced the parent hearings programme pilot five years ago we tried to create a climate of a less adversarial approach.  I believe the Family Court Bar tolerated the initiative but had difficulty whole heartedly supporting it.  Some argued that what we were trying to do was not consistent with natural justice and the rules of the Court.”

                                                                        Page 11

“You will see that from our perspective we welcome this Review of the Family Court because we have tried for some years to bring about reforms ourselves.  But we have done so with limited success in the absence of legislative sanction.”

                                                                        Page 12/13

Some two years ago Judge Boshier publicised the fact that in the previous year eighteen litigants, 9 male and 9 female, had committed suicide prompting him to suggest, as reported in the Ministry of Justice’s Review of the Family Court, that decisions affecting the custody of (primary care) and access (contact time) to children should be taken over by a special division of the Ministry of Social Development whose staff would not be legally trained in their ‘win-lose’ mentality but in mediation skills and with expertise in the social sciences.  He conceded that only a very small percentage of cases coming before his Court involved any point of law, a point also emphasised in the Review report.

The consumer groups regarded the Review as an enlightened document and an excellent blue-print for reform following the precedents set by the Australian reforms yet currently little reference is made to these reforms by your Bar or by the Select Committee in its recently issued report on the 6th June.  Although it could be argued that the reforms have not gone far enough, you have been successful so far, in insisting that lawyers are still involved at an early stage in proceedings to ensure that litigants continue to have ‘access to justice’ and you have lobbied for the status quo to be largely maintained.  You have pleaded as reported in a Fairfax media article (New Zealand Herald, 10 March 2013), your first publicised pronouncement in taking up your new position, that litigants should continue to have access to legal representation since self-representing litigants are only clogging up the system leading to still further delays.  As quoted, ‘They just don’t know how to identify the issues the Judge wants to know about and then to articulate them’, precisely the same problem in Australia which actually hastened their reforms and led to the opening of shop-front, easily accessible Family Mediation Centres, federally funded in population centres large and small across Australia.  Thus separating couples whom as you admit are spared the ‘hugely stressful’ experience of appearing before a Family Court Judge as they have no idea of the function of the law and don’t know what they are up against and would choose to stay away from the Courts if they did could now drop into the centres rather than employing a lawyer.  Your consumers as you say have unrealistic expectations of what Judges can do, or more to the point cannot do, so why, Sir, does this not lead you to the logical conclusion that a Court of Law is not the best place to resolve the complex psychosocial issues that accompany family breakdown given that these issues may last unresolved for many years?  And how do you reconcile the irreconcilable statement that the ‘warm’ moments you feel when you are dealing with and sorting out people’s problems as the ‘real law’ when their real problems do not involve legal issues at all?  And why after 32 years is your Court not better understood and accepted by the public it serves?

Your claim that your Court is one of the most successful models in the world would not be a statement that the many consumers of its services would share given its real history and resistance to change.  If your fellow Judges ‘…still want to make this the best Family Court that it could be’, then it has had 32 years to do so but still has not.

With respect, such comments in my opinion are misleading the public, perhaps deliberately so and are unconscionable given your final comments that hopefully ‘…any changes the Government chooses to impose will not make a difference to that system’.

Already such statements have caused a Government back-down on the so-called ‘unsafe’ reforms (as reported in the Weekend Herald, Saturday March 30th, 2013) and that Justice Minister Judith Collins in addressing your concerns is now to permit more involvement by lawyers at an earlier stage in the proceedings than had been intended, including the appointment of Counsel for the Child during mediation.  Happily you are supporting the repeal of the so-called Bristol clauses as repugnant to natural justice which indeed they are.  But my main concern here is that in allegedly setting back the momentum for reform as a powerful lobby group of your own and in trying to influence Government in trying to largely maintain the status quo, these actions may have compromised the independence of the Family Court bench and its impartiality,

Further, given the many examples in our cases of gender bias, prejudice and discrimination in judicial decision-making, can it be claimed that your fellow Family Court Judges are performing their duties in accord with the Bangalore Principles of Judicial Conduct (2002)?  It is well established that Judges together with any other citizen are entitled to freedom of expression, belief and opinion, but unlike the ordinary citizen Judges are obliged to protect standards of impartiality and independence (clause 4.6, page 5).  And under clause 1.3, page 3, a Judge, and I quote, ‘…should not only be free from inappropriate connections with the Executive and legislative branches of Government but must also appear to a reasonable observer to be free therefrom’.  It is debatable and at least questionable therefore, whether or not you have crossed the grey line separating your right to express your opinion that your Court is one of the most successful models in the world and that any changes made by the Executive will not make a difference to that system because the Judges want to make the system ‘the best Family Court it could be’, goes beyond a matter of opinion to a deliberate attempt on specious and misleading grounds to influence the Executive in order to maintain the status quo? 

Judge Boshier predicted that after the public release of the Ministry of Justice’s review there would be, as a result, a very specialised open and accountable Family Court, more able to come to resolutions on children’s welfare.  He added that unless there was executive commitment to see through the proposed reforms, tinkering at the edges with only incremental reforms would see little real changes to the system in the years ahead.

He referred to the March 2003 Law Commission report on dispute resolution which reflected the widespread criticism of the Court;  that it was biased against men, that without notice applications were granted too readily;  matters took too long to resolve and that children suffered because of the delays when decisions should be reached expeditiously in accord with the child’s perceptions of their sense of time.  Not all Family Court professionals were properly trained and skilled (pages 4/5).

The essential question should therefore be posed:-  ten years further on have these problems been successfully addressed and if not, why not?

As evidenced by our ‘horror stories’ some current and still unresolved, the answer is a definite ‘no’ and that is why the future directions of the Court over the next eight years should not continue to be under the leadership of a highly conservative Principal Family Court Judge.

Two recent publicised developments add veracity to my claims which are quite serious and point to a breakdown of respect for the rule of law and of the ongoing loss of public confidence in the Family Court.  One is the increase in the international as well as national abduction usually by mothers of children in defiance of court orders and two, the censure of a Christchurch based Family Court Judge by the Judicial Conduct Commissioner concerning her ‘shrill and improper conduct’ towards the litigants and a ‘gross and gratuitous’ discourtesy shown to an expert witness.

In my personal opinion, given that you are continuing to perpetuate a ‘win-lose’, adversarial model of family dispute resolution and have not supported or even mentioned the proposed setting up of a Dispute Resolution Service (F.D.R.), that this should disqualify you from continuing to hold your position of responsibility.  As a consequence I urge you to step down.

These views are entirely my own and not of other members of the fathers and families lobby groups.  I take full and sole responsibility for them.


Yours sincerely






Craig C Jackson

Registered Psychologist

Fathers and Family Rights Advocate


Friday, 28 June 2013

Straight from court today...............

My office is 'almost' next to the Christchurch Court, so on a day when not much is happening I take a wonder down to the court house.
Last night I emailed the court a suggestion that they offer free wifi- hey it's worth a try, everyone has free wifi for their customers no reason why a court can't be any different- I am still awaiting a reply.

So court doesn't start till 10.00am;

Court room one we had Judge Tony Couch. Boring, boring, boring.....he has one foot in the grave, looks and acts like death warmed up or something. So moved on from there rather quickly.

Court room two, Judge Murfitt (also a family court judge) who went running of too Wellington to get his lawyers back in the family court. He had a bit more life to him. His gown doesn't fit him right and slips off one shoulder, because it's black he kinda has this bogan look going on.

He caught one defence lawyer out. The defence lawyer tried to say his client was only a 'social' user of methamphetamine and not addicted to it (trust me, she looked very much addicted to it from the dock) in which Murfitt responded with a little laugh and  'I think you'll find it is a highly addictive drug and you can't be a social user'. He's right.

Another guy from the dock put up his hand to talk and then said to Murfitt 'your highness' . Murfitt laughed and said 'well no, not yet'. It was funny- guess you had to be there.

I had a run in with one of the registrars in court room two. I had a sudden feeling I left my phone turned on so started to look in my bag. I picked up a pen and pad to hold in my right hand while I looked at my phone with my left (serious multi tasking going on). The registrar walked past me and said, no taking notes. I said I'm not. Duh. From that point on we gave each other the 'evils' in court.

Court room three, Judge Kellar? Think it was him. Anyway he is interesting, he spent most of the time with his nose in a calendar trying to fit in trial dates with the clients lawyers. One case that came up was for a women on charges of assaulting a child under the age of 14 years. She pleaded guilty and sentencing was being set down for a date. This Judge then told her lawyer that a recent decision from the Appeals court on the 24th of June was a case for her lawyer to use as it would help in this other women's sentencing. The lawyer thanked the Judge for this information. I thought that was interesting a Judge was basically tell a lawyer which case law to use to get a lighter??? sentence??? (I haven't read this appeal court judgement yet so can't comment on what this Judge was trying to do).

Court room four, Judge MacDonald, wow I just about feel asleep! true I almost did. My little evil friend from court room two (above) came in at one point so I gave him a wave....and a grin....he looked glumly at's going to get a shock when he see's me again on Monday.

I learned later that Judge Farish was also sitting.
I missed gracing her presence. Going by this story it was good news.....she did not cry while sentencing this guy! (my past post on her crying in court when sentencing a pre-meditated rapist).
A very confusing case however, going by Judge Ryan who supports 14 year olds having sexual encounters with adult men and now this case. So confusing! and no consistency.


She had a protest outside her home and pamphlets were delivered to her neighbours.
My insider contact from the Ministry of Justice has informed me that she is sulking.
BUT, she has very much learned her lesson. There will be no more pen throwing, and tantrums in the court room from her. She has had a stern warning from her boss and the public attention has really
and I mean REALLY put her in her place.
Lets also hope it is a lesson to other Judges. That the public are not going to tolerate their behaviour.

Court security

Because I work in the security industry I have to comment. Ok, let me re-phrase that. I am having a rant.
This made me laugh and laugh and laugh...
Now read this and you will see why I laugh

Many years ago, when you walked into the Christchurch Court there was a line to the left for lawyers (who could skip security) and one for the public on the right (to go through security). Then it got changed to include lawyers in the security line. Lawyers think they are above people and that's why they moaned about suddenly being treated as 'commoners' and having to go through security.
I think the above lawyer proved why lawyers need security checks.

More ranting............
The security at Christchurch is still really poor quality. One of the security guys looks like he's only 16 years old! seriously??? he's half the size of me. AND every time I go through the metal detector I always 'beep'. All females 'beep' because we wear metal. But I then have to have a wave wand by the guy who looks like a teenager. Today I let out a really loud sigh and rolled my eyes, making sure all five security guys (oh and girl) saw this.

Ok, so I know everyone reading this is thinking, 'but its security for a court'. Yip, I work in the security industry, my business is in security. Courts should have security and need it. But when I walk in there I can immediately pick out their weak areas and to me it's just pointless having 'security' unless your going to have all areas secure. Security is a billion dollar industry and government departments have a very small budget for security which I think is wrong.

Wellington is another court I regularly go to and theirs is just as bad. The Ministry Technical and Judicial Security really need to have a complete over hall of their staff and advisors.

Thursday, 27 June 2013

Family Court- Fun House!

Do lawyers ever learn? - No

UPDATE - I forgot to link the reason for this post

Lawyers are nothing more than professional liars that get away with it AND earn money from it. I laugh at litigates who think their lawyers are their 'friends'. The delusion is amusing.

Emily Gendall- give it up. Lawyers ARE adversarial, that's the whole make up of lawyers- to argue peoples cases.

Your about as bad as this lot..

Someone lives in a cave!?

But Mark, they won their case...after how many years? If the Family Court was 'working well' then this case would have not ever got as far as it did!

Note in the article that Professor Mark Henaghan, Dean of the Otago Law Faculty, states that “there is not one shred of evidence that the Family Court is not working really, really well”.

I would argue that there is plenty of practice-based evidence (including suicide by some Family Court Consumers) that illustrates how poorly the Family Court works, and that there is in fact not one shred of outcome evidence to back up Professor Henaghans lofty claim.

Henaghan trips himself up in the article when he admits that there has never been a cost – benefit analysis of the Family Court – yet he takes a positivist position anyway.

No wonder Henaghan is dodging me to debate these issues -he knows that he can’t win the debate.
ODT Article:
Feel free to give the Professor a call or send him an email, and set him straight:
Telephone: (0 3) 479 8856

Update 25/6/13:
A Family Court Consumer has challenged Professor Mark Henaghan on his comment above:

Dear Professor Henaghan

You are quoted in the ODT as saying “there is not one shred of evidence that the Family court is not working really, really well”.
I would like to provide you with ample evidence that the NZ Family court is not working well. Our Family endured a two-year Family court experience from hell. We won the case, but immediately fled the country, as we had no confidence in the integrity of the NZ Family court. In our experience, the NZ Family court constantly ignored NZ law, and constantly disregarded the rule of law in very significant ways. Our son killed himself soon after illegal Family court bullying. He was never accused of doing anything wrong, but was threatened with imprisonment in the Family court, simply because a judge wanted to frighten him. Even though we won the case brought against us, we strongly believe that the judges presiding in our case should be imprisoned for their constant illegal misconduct.
I challenge you to read our court experiences, which are on pg 6-9 of this document: 
I am not a qualified lawyer, but I did attend law school many years ago – I changed course a year before finishing an LLB degree, and completed a Masters degree in Economics instead. I did learn enough about the rule of law however, to know that the NZ Family court case against my wife and I and our two sons was an atrocity. The judge in question has since been made Chief Justice of the NZ Family court.
I wonder whether you have the courage of your convictions to read our experiences and make comment. Remember, my wife and I won the case brought against us in the Family court – but we fled NZ as we were terrified of a corrupt, out-of-control Family court. We feared for our liberty. We feared a court that threatened to imprison us illegally. We now spend a lot of our time informing people in positions of influence around the world, of the true nature of New Zealand’s Family court. The judicial standards in the NZ Family court in our experience would be at the level that I would expect in corrupt courts in countries such Somalia or Zimbabwe.

Sunday, 23 June 2013

Judge Flatley aiding and betting in the abuse of children.

This time with the aid of Judge Coyle.

Did I not say things were going to get worse for this Judge?

Once again judges don't realise the amount of evidence going against them, and their lack of performance in the court.

Tuesday, 18 June 2013

Judge Emma Smith is currently very 'unwell'

Judge Emma Smith, who grace's the halls of the Family Court of Christchurch (or should that been thunders the halls as she isn't what I would call 'delegate') originating from New Plymouth and the law firm Govett Quilliam. Judge Noel Walsh, also a Christchurch Family Court sprung from the same firm. I always get curious when too many Judges come from the same law firm...bias perhaps?

Emma Smith is known for her court room 'outbursts' and her tantrum throwing pens! Yes it's not the first or only time she has flung objects across a court room.
Using a 'pen' as a weapon, would that be a criminal offence?

She is menopausal and at the extreme end of it!
She has no idea of what she is doing in the court room. In the normal course of Judges she isn't even ignorant or arrogant. She is just plain moody, nasty and vicious. She can't control her temper and she has no dignity.
Personally, if she started to act in a remote way of being 'normal' I would consider that to be a very bad sign.

If this is how she acts in a court room imagine what she is like in her home! Let me tell you....
She's no better! She raises her voice to the point the neighbours can hear her. She is in constant family feuds with her family.

The case that has sprung her to life in the media, is also nothing abnormal for her. She has a very, very long list of cases where she has done the same thing. My challenge to her is. If Emma Smith has that much faith in her own Judgements, then she can send her children to this guy for the weekend. Like I have said in my previous post, if Emma thinks it's good enough for other kids then it's good enough for hers, or her nieces. Anyone want to take bets she wont take the challenge up?

It is also becoming clear that the Family Court is not having a good time at the moment. I think given the amount of people contacting me and others, the amount of websites up about the Family Court. It is going to get much worse for them! Even the Sensible Sentencing Trust is starting to comment about Family Court Judges.

So, Simon David Heale is Emma Smiths partner. They live at 84 Knowles Street Saint Albans Christchurch. They have two daughters Caitlin aged 14, and Abbey aged 11. Abbey attends Catherdral Grammer School.

This is Caitlin. She looks like her mother! God help children everywhere!! There's two of them.

Friday, 14 June 2013

Mental Note for the Family Court

You would think that at some point the penny might drop on the family court and they would realise that mothers will lie in the court. Family Court should operate with jury's.

Thursday, 13 June 2013

New Family Court consumer website has lawyers 'up in arms'
A new Family Court Consumer website has Consumers cheering, and Lawyers up in arms, says Steve Taylor, Convenor of

"If you are a Family Court Consumer who wishes to anonymously share their experience of the New Zealand Family Court process, then we want to hear from you" says Mr Taylor.

In 2011, the Ministry of Justice embarked on a review of the Family Court.

In 2013 - 14, the results of this review will most likely pass into Law.
In the entire review, the Consumers voice was almost totally ignored, and / or actively silenced by the Legal profession, the Justice & Electoral Select Committee process, and the mainstream media, save for a first-person survey which illustrated some appalling service-provider results, for example:

- 38% of respondents had a case still proceeding in the Family Court;
- 79% of respondents had to attend the Family Court to settle a dispute.
- 53% of respondents required a Court order in order to settle a dispute.
- 61% of respondent’s lawyers had advised them to take Court action in the first instance.
- 47% of respondents felt that their Lawyers were not helpful to them in their dispute.
- 84% of respondents felt that Counselling was not helpful to them in their dispute.
- 35% of respondents nominated none of the Family Court services as being helpful to them in their dispute (including Counselling, Mediation, Parenting through Separation, and negotiation between lawyers).
- 46% of respondents found no relevance for a final Parenting Order.
- 54% of respondents rated their Lawyer for Child as "not competent"
- 51% of respondents rated their Counsellor as competent, while only 32% of respondents rated their

Court-appointed Psychologist as competent (If Counselling is to face the axe in these reforms, then by this result, Court appointed Psychologists should be facing the axe even quicker than Counsellors, who are deemed by service users to be more competent than Court-appointed Psychologists).

- 43% of respondents nominated none of the available Family Court professionals as being helpful to them in their dispute (including Judges; their own Lawyer; Lawyer for Child; the Court appointed Psychologist (who rated "0"); Counsellors; or Mediators).
- 74% of respondents nominated preferences to dispute resolution away from the Family Court.
- 82% of respondents nominated the Family Court process as having had a negative impact on their children.
- 72% of respondents were very dissatisfied with the time it took the Family Court to settle their dispute.

Despite this attempt to silence legitimate Consumer dissent, a number of reforms destined for the Statute books appear to more fully support the voice of the Consumer to resolve the issues at hand, while rightly side-lining incompetent Counsellors, Psychologists & Lawyers, & Lawyer-for-Child in the process.

There are many stories of the damage that Court "professionals" have wrought in cases concerning families and children - and even Judges have not been excused from this legitimate exposure.
When one considers that children who are exposed to the Family Court process are estimated to lose an average of 5 years life expectancy the so-called "best interests of the child" mantra rings rather hollow when espoused by those who are most significantly contributing to the damage.

The website is the forum to share your experience - and while we will keep your name and the names of your children anonymous, the "professionals" won’t be enjoying the same anonymity.

So welcome to - now, let’s hear your story, and let’s put your story in front of the decision-makers, and the "Court" of public opinion.


Wednesday, 12 June 2013

McKenzie Friend has lawyers running scared

Emily Gendall should stick to giving her clients legal advise, not the other party.
Lawyers send letters like the one to other parties because there case is on a crash course to fail, and they get desperate.

Perhaps Emily should just do what Lauren Pegg does and say to the Judge how her name is all over blogs and therefore no child should ever see their father never knew that was written in the Care Of Children Act..oh wait it isn't- Tui add!

The reason Family Court Lawyers don't like self-litigants is because they have more ability to explain to a Judge the love for their child and the power of their relationship with the child. Lawyers can't do this. At the moment there is a case going through the High Court in which the Applicant is has no lawyer BUT an Advocate. I laughed when they sent me one of their submissions recently.

The front page had the Applicant and then the ten (yes ten) defendants!

At the bottom of the page it lists this;

This document is filed by:
Robert Lee, Advocate for Applicant
Contact Details for Counsel for Defendants
Jo Douglas, Counsel for 1st Defendant
Antoinette Russell Counsel for 2nd, 3rd & 6th Defendants

Katerine Evans Advocate for 4th Defendant

David Gee, Advocate for 5th Defendant

G Burt, Counsel for 10th Defendant

The Applicants has a very strong case and already the defendants are asking for 'more time' because they are frantic to defend themselves!

Monday, 10 June 2013

High Court calls Family Court Judges 'offensive'

Self-representing father wins costs against family Court.

In a number of recent decisions the High Court has criticised a number of orders made by Auckland Family Court judges as “offensive” and “inconsistent” with the Care of Children Act. The judges who made the invalid orders are Judge Jan Walker, Judge David Burns (twice) and Judge Timothy Druce.
 In awarding the costs, Justice Venning described as “offensive” directions made by Judges Walker and Burns

In two other recent decisions, the High Court said Judges Burns and Druce had without proper jurisdiction or grounds suspended parents’ guardianship rights.

Judge Venning says,'It is my view therefore that Judge Burns has exceeded his jurisdiction in purporting to suspend the appellant’s guardianship rights. Guardianship is a fundamental right of a parent.”

Justice Woolford said “In any event, I am of the view that a parenting order cannot include deprivation of a parent of guardianship of his or her child.”

If the Principal Family Court Judge reads the decisions of the High Court, one would have to hope that he must surely be wondering what is going on that is causing his judges to get it so badly wrong.

Sunday, 9 June 2013

Dunedin Courts dirty little secret.....

'The complaint related to a personal relationship the judge had entered into with a Dunedin employee of the Ministry of Justice.'

I know who this employee is, thanks to my leaky contact at the MJ. I will have a wee think about naming them.

He's married! and had an affair? That is dodgy moral issues!! If he can't be honest in his personal life then he can't be honest in his public life either in my opinion! His poor wife, do I name her? Her first name starts with L and middle name starts with J?

"It'll be a loss to the Dunedin community as he is such a strong and effective judge."! he has bonking someone else while married! He made one very bad call. And might I add, his wife is better looking than the rag he was sleeping with (yes I have pictures), that's for sure.

As luck would have it- He's not the only Judge in New Zealand currently doing this.

Judge Robert Murfitt

I am reading through the 'Submissions of the Christchurch Family Court Judges'.
That is;

John Strettell, Jane McMeeken, Chris Sommerville, Robert Murfitt, Emma Smith and Noel Walsh.

I know them all, and all about them.  In fact properly more than I should! I can say so much on this bunch and I will be. I will responded to this submission to because really all these Judges should know better.


Murfitt has tried to state...and I quote

'The Family Court in New Zealand is regarded internationally as the best of all systems.'

No it isn't. Read my below post. New Zealand was discussed at the Sydney Family Court conference AND the conciseness is it was the WORST in the developed world. Read the case on the 14 year old having sex with adults, promoted by the New Zealand Family Court.

Australia Family Court Judge Rodney Burr is on my contact list too! He will now receive a copy of the sex scandal of the 14 year old and I have another one in mind that I think could do with his opinion.

Saturday, 8 June 2013

Law of the jungle??

The latest version of the Government's family law reforms will create a "law of the jungle" because many people won't be able to afford justice, lawyers say.

The Family Court has changed over the years. Ask any Family Court Lawyer and they will comment on how every year it keeps changing. One of the changes some years back, was to make it more 'user friendly' basically because a number of litigates were choosing to represent themselves, they had to make the process easier. The process IS easy. Anyone can self-represent in the family court, it's highly recommend to not have a lawyer as lawyers only see it as revenue gathering and not actually about the families. It is also not expensive to go through the Family Court.

Parliament's justice and electoral committee has made no concessions on a proposal to replace free counselling for separating couples with compulsory pre-court mediation by private dispute resolution services for a fee, expected to be about $900, on top of a $220 fee introduced last year for applying for a care-of-children order.

Good. Why should it be free and paid for by the tax payer for parents to engage in immature behaviour in the courts and use children as weapons in their adult games.

It has also specified for the first time that couples arguing over who gets the children will probably pay a third of the costs of reports ordered by a judge from psychologists or other experts, and all costs if a parent wants a second opinion.
They will also have to pay an unspecified share of the costs of a lawyer for the children, although the bill greatly reduces the number of cases requiring lawyers for children by allowing judges to decide if it is necessary for a child's wellbeing.

Sigh, this is already established (for sometime now) in the current system of the Family Court were parties can AND do end up paying these costs. It always interests me why they do this, its already in the law, but make out like it isn't?

Otago University law school dean Mark Henaghan, the lead author of Butterworths Family Law in New Zealand, said the fees would drive many parents to accept what the other parent or a mediator proposed, even if it wasn't in children's best interests, because they could not afford to fight.
"The law of the jungle means the more powerful party will dominate," he said.
"We are abandoning people to their own devices, which ends up in more fights, more arguments, and that has consequences for the children."

I total disagree with this. Already now, people pour heaps of funds into their legal battles. These changes will not change that. These 'fees' are implemented in Australia Family Law (Which New Zealand is finally modelling) and it is working just fine. You can't get better than shared care like the norm now is in Australia.

The Law Society's family law chairman, Garry Collin, said provisions banning lawyers from acting for separating couples until after mediation, and then only at a judge's discretion for an initial settlement conference, would not stop wealthy parents paying for legal advice outside the court but would bar partners on lower incomes from getting advice on legal aid.
"Those who are wealthy will do just fine," he said. "The poor are often women who don't have income, can't pay for advice and won't get it."

Well, well, well, There's a name I know. Gary Collins. I have had him in the past. He was appointed a 'lawyer to assist' and he sided completely with me on the case. I suspected he would given my argument was based on the law. I don't waste courts time on vexatious, mud slinging matches. And the courts don't like it either. Anyway, I somewhat disagree with what he has said. Lawyers should be banned completely! Its the lawyers that cause the most trouble in cases. They see it as easy money and problems arise when lawyers don't advise their clients appropriately. Case example, would be the one Gary Collins was involved in. Stephanie Marsden lawyer for the other party has lost against me twice now, because she can't advise her clients right. In the 2009 case I had to sit there and listen to her bleat on for an hour and a half, I spoke, what 10 minutes?? and won. If she had bothered to tell her client that my case was strong (and had taken note of what Gary Collins filed), it would have saved him thousands of dollars. Then she came back for more. Her and her client got the biggest blasting from Judge Russell and she ran away with her tail between her legs- not before posting her bill to the client however.
There is nothing stopping 'poor women' as he puts it, from getting legal advice. There is the community law branches that help out all the time.

The select committee has allowed up to four hours of legal advice on legal aid before a dispute reaches court and up to three hours' counselling before mediation.
It says about 60 per cent of disputes going to mediation would qualify for aid.
"People above the [legal aid] threshold would be required to arrange FDR [family dispute resolution] privately and pay for it themselves," the committee said.
"FDR is likely to be less expensive than hiring a lawyer and proceeding to a defended hearing in court."

Totally agree. I think it will be a good outcome. All that is needed now is for shared parenting to be the default position for when parents separate, have Judges and Lawyers held accountable when they get it wrong and HAVE to apologise to the families and I think New Zealand children may have some chance at having a normal childhood without being alienated from one parent by another and by the Courts.

User-pays justice
Separating parents will pay:
• $220 fee to apply for a care-of-children order.
• $900 fee for compulsory mediation.
• One-third of the cost of expert reports ordered by a judge.
• All of the cost of second opinions.
• Some of the cost of lawyers for children.

From another long time Family Court advocate, says;

The Family Court Review was addressed at the quality of outputs and the cost of operation of the Family court.
Although in essence this would mainly involve social issues, the Committee’s focus has been on detailed legislative changes. They have avoided looking at the social issues that are the foundation for having a Family Court at all. Their report does not address the issue of how well Family Court operation parallels the legislation on which it should be based. Perhaps this is unsurprising, given the background and training of most of the members of the Committee and the extreme difficulty for them to get a window on what happens in Family Court.
The detailed changes to legislation can be expected to be very constructive, if the Family Court follows them?
To fully address the social issues would be a huge undertaking. Given the huge financial and social costs of social policy, this is long overdue. Many of the submissions addressed issues ranging from quality of children’s upbringing, parenting skills, training and parental suicide to the technical legal issues. The report has ignored the wider social issues, despite these being where the largest costs and opportunities lie.
Alternative Disputes Resolution (ADR) will be helpful and cost saving, for the people who generally can solve their own disputes anyway. The parties who slug it out in Family Court are those like Kay Skelton, who take advantage of the perverse opportunities that the Family Court secretly makes available. This does not serve children, in any way. She was only brought into line, when her long duration abduction of Jayden made it impossible to hide from the public. Hundreds of thousands of children suffer a little each day as a result of parents responding to the perverse incentives of the Family Court.
Public policy is about giving positive incentives to parents and to Family Court workers to behave constructively. The Government has not actively managed incentives within Family Court. These people make more money by winding up disputes and prolonging them. This does not serve children and is a dangerous perverse incentive. When a judge does not order costs or other penalty against a parent breaking court orders or who provides dishonest information, then the incentive is against the interests of the children and the parties too. Any parent of a toddler understands this principle.
It is only by encouraging good faith negotiation that all parties will receive proper protection. The ADR providers will do this, as their incentives encourage this. However, the available recourse to the existing Family Court will hamper the ability of the ADR providers to deliver good outcomes, especially in cases where one or both parents have poor mental health or anti social behaviours. These people need strong positive incentives, an area in which this legislation offers only minor improvements.
Providing constructive incentives for good behaviour and good faith negotiation is the single most critical aspect of Family Court success or failure.

My own statement of conflict of interest:
I have children who might one day be forced to deal with Family Court, so I have a vested interest in family disputes being solved competently and cost effectively. I have more hope that ADR can serve the public than Family Court, by allowing the public to manage ADR employment. I do not earn any income related to Family Court. I sometimes give my time to help people forced to deal with Family Court, usually fathers, but some mothers too. This costs me time and a little money.