THE LIZ LIBRARY: Parenting Coordinator

Article on Parenting Coordination can be found at:
Parenting Coordination, a bad idea
http://www.thelizlibrary.org/therapeutic-jurisprudence/parenting-coordination.html
Also see: Parenting Coordinator Practical Considerations
And: A "child-centered divorce"?

  • Parenting coordination is an inappropriate delegation of the judicial function
  • Parenting coordination is an impediment to court access
  • Parenting coordination is a denial of due process
  • Parenting coordination violates privacy
  • The parenting coordinator concept encroaches on family liberty interests
  • Parenting coordination represents arbitrary dictate by a person, in denigration of rule of law
  • Parenting coordination is a make-work role newly invented by psychology trade promotion groups
  • No studies indicate parenting coordinators make good decisions
  • No studies indicate parenting coordination improves families' lives or child wellbeing.
  • Nothing qualifies a stranger to make family decisions for other people
  • Nothing qualifies a mental health professional to interpret a court order or legal document
  • Nothing qualifies a lawyer to play at being an unlicensed, unregulated therapist for hire
  • Nothing qualifies any third party to "fill in the gaps" in someone else's contract
  • There is no definition of what constitutes a successful parenting coordination
  • Parenting coordination does not, in the long run, alleviate court docket congestion
  • It creates additional issues and leaves the door open for return trips to resolve them
  • Parenting coordination provides a new forum for squabbling over petty disputes
  • Parenting coordination is an additional expense that many can ill afford
  • Parenting coordination enables one parent to spend the other's funds
  • Parenting coordination is time-consuming and tedious
  • Parenting coordination is not confidential
  • Parenting coordination constitutes continuous government discovery, 4th Amendment
  • Parenting coordination constitutes continuous discovery by each parent into the affairs of the other
  • Parenting coordination can never be "voluntary" because it implements unwanted court orders
  • Parenting coordinators demand that the parties sign "consents" that give up constitutional rights
  • Some have demanded that parties give up the right to go to court, contact police, or involve their lawyers
  • They are hired or appointed under shadow of the threat of court sanctions or loss of custody
  • They are agreed to by parties ignorant of the repercussions, in fear, out of funds, or overwhelmed
  • Parenting coordination does not result in increased family well-being
  • Parenting coordination does not make children happier, healthier, or better adjusted
  • Parenting coordination is not therapy but coercion backed by the state's police power
  • Parenting coordinators tend to be hostile to, and at odds with attorney-client relationships
  • They align with GALs and other court appointees in a pretext of "focus on the children"
  • They encroach on parental-child relationships and decision-making
  • They undermine the parental authority children require for a sense of security and well-being
  • Instead of at least one authoritative parent, children have no authoritative parent
  • Petty tyrants place a premium on the perception of who is cooperating with them
  • Cooperation with the parenting coordinator is court-ordered and
  • They alone decide if a parent is "cooperating" with them
  • They are given unwarranted authority to impose or recommend sanctions against parents
  • They are given unwarranted authority to speak with extended family, friends, and collaterals
  • They are given unwarranted authority to speak with children, teachers, and school officials
  • They are given authority to demand private medical and therapy records
  • They are able continuously to undermine the credibility and competence of parents to third parties
  • They are able continuously to divulge private family issues to third parties
  • They are given authority to demand meetings, and meeting times and places
  • There are no studies of parenting coordination methods or techniques
  • There is no research into parenting coordinators' efficacy, and there cannot be
  • Decisions are based on the parenting coordinator's private agendas, values, and beliefs
  • Most parenting coordinators lack psychological insight
  • Parenting coordination is not "co-parenting therapy" which rarely works anyway
  • Mental health professionals are ignorant of the repercussions in law of their ideas
  • There is no valid "training" because there is no body of knowledge to base training on
  • Decisions are made without actual knowledge of people's households and daily lives
  • Parenting coordination provides a forum for the arguing of minutiae, not just major decisions
  • Parenting coordinators frequently make bad decisions
  • The parenting coordinator has absolutely no incentive to work himself or herself out of a job
  • Parenting coordinators tend to be individuals who can't make a go of practicing their profession
  • Many have axes to grind; others need to re-live and normalize their own family-of-origin issues
  • Parenting coordination is unregulated and practicably unable to be regulated
  • There is no effective oversight, and there cannot be
  • There is no recourse against the parenting coordinator for malfeasance or malpractice
  • Parenting coordinators have control to self-generate their work and churn fees
  • The claim of parenting coordinators that they sought this role in order to "help" people is specious
  • Parenting coordination proceedings are informal, outside court, and not subject to effective oversight
  • Parenting coordinators can report conversations and events differently from how they really happened
  • Parenting coordinators can cover themselves by blaming parents for the failure of the venture
  • Parenting coordinators can and do give parents make-work at whim
  • Parenting coordinators may not have any personal parenting experience
  • Parenting coordinators may not have experience being primary caregivers, or as single parents
  • Many of those drawn to the field are by nature meddlers, incompetents, or petty tyrants
  • Parenting coordination is dangerous, founded on erroneous beliefs about "high conflict"
  • Parenting coordination is a tool to force fit parents and children to invest in abusers' rehabilitation
  • "High conflict" means "abusive relationship", not "difficult learning situation"
  • "High conflict" means "threats to security and well-being", not "lack of communication skills"
  • Fears and concerns are real, not irrational, vindictive, or merely personality disordered
  • "High conflict" means that the "parenting plan" is inappropriate, unjust, unhealthy, or unsafe, and
  • there is no "adjustment period" to get through or equal "co-parenting relationship" to regain
  • Parenting coordinators have missed domestic violence
  • Parenting coordinators have inflamed emotions and exacerbated legal issues
  • Parenting coordinators have assumed facts that are not true
  • Parenting coordinators have perceived emergencies or situations incorrectly
  • Parenting coordinators have mischaracterized events
  • Parenting coordinators have made egregious judgmental mistakes
  • Parenting coordinators have lied outright
  • There is no basis to presume their "good faith" or their "neutrality"
  • There are no ethical guidelines that practicably can be enforced
  • There are, and can be, no enforceable practice parameters, only vague aspirational generalities
  • Parenting coordinators will be biased because of the nature of human relationships and the role
  • Court oversight is illusory because the parenting coordinator has more credibility than either parent
  • Court oversight is illusory because the parenting coordinator has the ear of the judge, and
  • because the parenting coordinator has relationships with supportive guardians ad litem, and
  • because the parenting coordinator has other courthouse referral relationships who will back him or her
  • Court oversight is illusory because it's easy to claim a parent is uncooperative or lying
  • Court oversight is illusory because it's expensive
  • or there is not enough time to get a hearing
  • or the party doesn't have a lawyer post-decree, and
  • because the judge who appointed the parenting coordinator did so because he didn't want to hear it
  • Most of all, parenting coordination is proof that joint custody does not work
  • ADDITIONAL READING

  • Protecting Victims of Domestic Violence
  • Out of control parenting coordinator (Hastings case, FL 2nd DCA, 2002)     Caveat custody modification standard

  • Out of control parenting coordinator and a recused judge who relied on him (Wade case, FL 3rd DCA, 2013)
    • Decision includes information about judicial bias warranting recusal as well as guidance on what constitutes an inappropriate referral for a psychological evaluation. The Florida judge relied on the ridiculous musings of parenting coordinator Chicago attorney Howard Rosenberg. (Good work by Lisa Macci, attorney for the mom.)
      (More -- news article, 10/23/13).

  • DVLeap brief in 2010 case (Washington, DC) arguing some of the constitutional issues     More from DVLeap
    • "The Court's parenting coordinator orders unconsitutionally delegate judicial power and violate due process... The Special Master Order's requirement that Appellant pay for the parenting coordinators to whom she objects violates law and public policy... The Special Master Order requiring Appellant to waive her medical privilege violates her statutory and constitutional rights to privacy..."

  • Martindale, D. A., False promise of parenting coordination, Matrimonial Strategist, 25:8 (2007)
    • "...a forum in which sniping can continue unabated... [M]ost jurisdictions do not sufficiently address issues of due process... When neither evidentiary rules nor due process protections apply ... the probability of unjust decisions is increased... Can those who are being paid to render a service objectively evaluate the need for or effectiveness of that service... we must not lose sight of the various elements of the process that create a risk of iatrogenic harm."
  • Delegation of Judicial Authority to Experts, A. G. Behjani, 2007 Utah L. Rev. 823
  • CCFC Amicus Brief, Tadros v. Doyne (discovery issues, how due process gets undermined)
  • Former Fla. Gov. Jeb Bush explains 2004 veto of parenting coordinator legislation
  • Example of unconstitutional judicial mandate for involuntary PC appointment (Florida)
  • Sample Order of Referral to Parenting Coordinator (Florida)
  • Article on parenting coordination bill in Florida and domestic violence
  • AFCC Parenting Coordinator Guidelines (aspirational generalities, no malfeasance oversight)
  • An attorney father describes his experience with parenting coordination in his own case
  • http://www.thelizlibrary.org/parenting-coordination/hastings.pdf (Hastings case malfeasance)
  • How to Represent Parents Accused of Child Abuse (Florida Bar CLE) (hint, hint)
  • http://www.thelizlibrary.org/parenting-coordination/wyckoff.pdf
  • http://www.5dca.org/Opinions/Opin2009/012609/5D07-3461.pdf
  • http://www.floridasupremecourt.org/decisions/2005/sc04-1012.pdf
  • http://www.thelizlibrary.org/parenting-coordination/norris.pdf
  • http://www.2dca.org/opinion/February%2001,%202006/2D04-2609.pdf
  • http://batteredmomslosecustody.wordpress.com/
  • CASE MANAGERS -- an obscene concept (April 2012 article Kansas)
  • Kansas brief on this CASE MANAGEMENT case, Karen Williams
  • Shrinks Gone Wild Willick Law Group, Nevada
  • Shrinks Gone Wild 2 Willick Law Group, Nevada
  • 2010 article on Florida's Shared Parenting law by Judge Corbin

    Gestational Surrogacy and other Logical Fallacies and Legal Fictions

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