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Friend of the Court "Meetings"

Started by 3childdad, Oct 12, 2005, 09:22:33 AM

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Hi!  I am a CP with JP/JR shared custody with no primary residence in Michigan's 6th Circuit Family Court.  I noticed under "Ivan's" article "How To Hire an Effective Attorney" that he or she talkes about the importance of not agreeing to in chamber meetings with the Judge or, if you do, at least making sure that the client is present with council.  My question is:

1)  Does any know of any precedence, statutes or compiled law in Michigan that I can use to cite in an objection where just my attorney is told to attend the Friend of the Court "meeting" without me?

The situation is this.  Whenever you precipe to go before a 6th Circuit Family Court Judge in Michigan on a Wednesday morning motion call  the clerk that you check in with directs you to go with your attorney to a hallway outside of the jurors room next to the Judges courtroom.  From here you wait until your called to see the Referee and Family Counselor for a meeting that takes place so a recommendation can be given to the Judge right away.  Inevitably, 9 out of 10 times if your Lawyer is present with you, you are told to wait in the courtroom while your lawyer pleads your case.  From here unless your lawyer is  altruistic as Gandi you are officially out of the loop and at the mercy of "the system".
No other action than this pursuades those that they are trying to control to be compliant and repressed.

My experience has taught me that the single biggest advantage (to them. disadvantage to us) that Judges, Attorneys and FOC personnel exercise is that of keeping the litigants in the dark about the law, procedure, investigation findings and what is really being said behind  these closed doors.  Remember-ignorance is bliss.

Please send me any helpful information.  I have been railroaded so many times my screenname should be GrandCentral.


we're in the same court, we have agreement with our attorney that they cannot finalize anythign with anyone without our approval.   if we don't agree with the Ref's recommendation, we take it before the judge for their decision or a trial appearance.

we also had a court motion for decrease in custody and when our attorney filed the motion, we chose to circumvent the ref's decision altogether because we knew we'd get the decrease and we knew mom would never go along with it so we didn't want to waste money in front of the ref.  we went straight to trial.

if you have Judge Pezzetti, get a new judge.  She's becoming increasingly pro mom.


Hi! Joni.  It's nice to hear from you.  I have always been a true fan of your posts.  

In the past, I too have ignored the Ref's decision based upon this second recommendation which I regard as a quasi-appeal hearing.  Never in the three modifications that I have had in the last 18 months has there been any attempt to show definitive numbers to warrant a ref's decision.  He has purposely avoided giving any "numeric evidence" in support of evaluation of my income.  

The closest he came to presenting rationale to his decision making once involved making my attorney aware that he was going to evaluate my income based on a $70,000/yr salary with a $376.00 support payment to ex for 3 kids under the SER formulae. When my attorney came back to me in the courtroom to tell me this, I presented six officially prepared support scenarios using the current Margin Soft Child Support Calculator I had brought for the occasion (I know.  Being anal and prepared makes me an open target for all kinds of things).  My ex's income was fixed (stipulated upon as being accurate in all the scenarios) but mine was the income in question.  Guess What?  In the scenario with my income being $70,000/yr my support only came to $189.00/month, not the $376.00 he recommended on his carbon copied recommendation!  Busted right?  Not really.  Even though my attorney told me to "don't go there" and accept the recommendation I said no in no uncertain terms.  Hence, I gave my attorney the verbal "wat's the madder you" in the back of the head and sent him in again with an evil eye showing him the way.

My attorney went back into the meeting and asked what the discrepancy was.  Ref stated sorry, it was in a bad typo on my ex's income that he made in the program.  Yeah right!  Long story short, I was reevaluated $20 higher (now $396/month) without my yearly salary acknowledgement on the recommendation and sent before the Judge!  Ten minutes later I lost the motion on Judge's discretionary call without her ever looking at one single written word of evidence or paperwork.

In my opinion, with plenty of hindsight there is no justice.


I've lost the faith too brother.

Our judge finally turned on us.  My SD came to us with hand prints of bruises on her back on 2 occasions.  We had a psych confirm maternal child abuse.  We filed police reports.  The child admitted to abuse in two states with their protective agencies.  Took child to ER where she also admitted the abuse.

The judge returned the child to the mother, citing she didn't think the child was in imminent danger and that the child needed to get back to her stable environment (new stepdad of 3 weeks, new home of 3 weeks, new school of 4 days).

I guess the Mendoza line for this judge is broken bones.  Oblivious and ambivalent as to how children get broken bones (think it starts with bruises on the back???).

When mom moved from MI to NY two years ago, we signed a court order than MI was to retain exclusive jurisdiction in MI until 2007 (to keep the litigious mom out of court in her own backyard).  Mom's atty never protested it, even when a custody evaluation was ordered last month.

At the last court appearance, judge suggested she would hear case law about moving case to NY despite our agreement.  Yesterday, mom's atty shows up to court...WITH NO CASE LAW....and judge releases jurisdiciton anyway.

To quote Soc, judges get paid the same whether they have 10 cases or a 100 cases.  So why not use the opportunity to book a pain in the a$$ case like ours?

Clearly your ref hates you and the judge is too lazy.  Figuring you can afford to be overstated by $200 on your $70K/year.  

Is this Judge Pezzetti by any chance?


No, it is Judge Cheryl Mathews.  Former Assistant Prosecutor for Oakland County Child Abuse Unit.  She prides herself in being a new age trier of fact and to use her own words, also a "strict constructionist."

I have sat in her courtroom for three full days on my case and listening to other ones on Wednesday motion day.  I haven't done any actual count of men that she had personnally attacked with threats of Judicial  "street justice" when there is incomplete facts or purely unsubstantiated facts but it has been over 5.  I see Judge Judy anger coming out in her more often with each visit.  I wouldn't be surprised to see a complete "male until proven innocent" reputation soon.  You don't have a past job like she has had and not have personnal bias.  I just hope she moves on from my case in January like my last two Judges have.

I guess that you should be just about fed up with this constant courtroom flip flopping.  In the past, when I have read you and your husbands situation as it was happening I have wanted to comment on just how outrageously horrible it sounded, but I haven't.  I hope this gets better for her and you two.  Did her wannabe mother move to another pretentious neighborhood like the last?  Grosse Point wasn't it?
I hope this child at least has some good opportunities for a normal life.  


No, mom was a Grosse Point wannabe.

oh boy on your judge....

you need to hook up with this guy about Judge Matthews, he's on a crusade against her.  he's got CPS issues against her with foster children.  Matthews people took down his main web site.


I just sent you an email with his info, he's also in the group below.  Very vocal about Judge Matthews.

you also need to join these groups




Thanks Joni.

I was wondering when I would start to here the truth (if verifiable) about this Judge.  I would not be surprised to find out if there is truth behind these accusations.  People have to remember that these Judges are part of a cross section of society that show up in all professions.  

Currently, I am a member of DADS Of MICHIGAN.  I believe I have mentioned it before on the DOM website about Judge Beers (sp?) from the 6th Circuit 20 years ago having been caught being married to two woman in two states at the same time while he was a Judge!!!  Both women he fathered children with and was living separate lives with in two states.  Neither family new about the other.  

And seeing as I am about to display my email I would like to proclaim to Ms. Mathew's cronies, if they are reading this, that my name is DENNIS CRONK, one of her assigned cases.  On a personal note: YOU ARE NOT ABOVE THE LAW OR ABOVE PUBLIC SCRUTINY FOR YOUR POSITION.  We obviously do not question your integrity because we VOTED you in.  We expect and rely upon it.  Don't abuse it!!!

Joni, please send me info at [email protected] if you have it.  I don't see it in any email as yet.  

Keep in mind from what the Pastor has regrettably found out.