Thursday, November 12, 2009

Wasted day in court

Judge Salazar court was another waste of time. The court was packed at 8:30 am, and he had about 40 cases. He did not get to mine until 10:00.

He pretty much refused to actually decide anything. My ex-wife claimed that there was a dispute about the order for a psychological evaluation, and she wanted to change it. I said that there was no genuine dispute because I had psychologists who were willing to do the evaluation as written, and my ex-wife and I had said that we agree to cooperate with the evaluation as written. But Judge Salazar said that as long as my ex-wife claims that there is a dispute, he won't decide anything, and referred us off to see Commissioner Joseph next month.

The judge did not decide much in other cases either. Mostly he told couples to work things out by themselves. In some cases, the parties seemed to have not even discussed the issue or given each other the relevant documents. Sometimes he would tell the parties to go discuss the matter in the hallway. He told them that they are supposed to "meet and confer" on the issues before coming to court.

One man was brought in chains and an orange jumpsuit. He got arrested for missing a court appearance. He said that he was homeless, and dependent on others to get him to court. Others lost their motions because they did not show up.

Some complaints were silly. There was one mom whose child support would have terminated because the daughter turned 18 and finished high school. But the mom had her attend an extra year of high school, and wanted child support until graduation. The child support does terminate at graduation, but she wanted a full month when the daughter was in school for a fractional month. The judge ended up calculated a pro-rated amount for them.

The most pathetic case was a mexican man who could barely pay his child support. Judge Salazar blamed him because "he decided to have two more kids". Huhh? The worst part was that his ex-wife complained that he owed $18k in back child support, and had no hope of paying it. The judge tried to explain to him that even tho his child support was being automatically withheld from his paycheck, his ex-wife claims that the withholding did not match his legal obligations. It did not matter if the withholding was wrong or if the court had estimated his income incorrectly or if he has no money or if the ex-wife is late making her demands or the documents are unavailable or any of those things. Unless he can produce documents from 2002 to prove that he had paid the money, he would be ordered to pay it again. The dad command of English was limited, and he did not appear to understand.

Meanwhile, the ex-wife said that she only works ten hours a week. When asked why she doesn't work more, she said that she could easily work more, but she doesn't need to because she is getting plenty of child support to live on. But again, the judge had to explain to the man that the fact that the ex-wife suing him for money she never needed makes no difference. He still has to pay. The man said that neither he nor his employer has records from 2002 to prove what was paid.

I don't know how the judge can stand to explain such blatantly unfair laws every day.


Anonymous said...

so how is then that JJJ will be hearing your case next month when he's supposed to be hearing juvenile court cases? Are there so many cases Salazar is punting that JJJ has to pick up the slack and clean up his mess? Not that he will, of course.

The case you describe re the woman who's working only 10 hours/week sounds very simular to the one I saw JJJ rule on last time I was before him. The man made $20/hour and he had to pay $1800/month and she wasn't even working. She was told " know, you really do need to get a job" with a kind smile. The man looked like he was hit by an 18 wheeler.

You ask how those guys can hear cases with such unjust laws? I don't think it bothers them a bit, they're so corroded inside. Power is an incredible drug and that's the addiction.

George said...

I think the rationale for turning the motion over to Cmr. Joseph is that it concerns an interpretation of one of his orders. Judge Salazar has admitted that he does not understand the order and does not know how to interpret it.

Of course I don't know how anyone can be expected to follow an order that the family court judge does not even understand, but that is another matter.

Anonymous said...

Judge Salazar is a gutless asshole! The other parent moved away with my child without my permission & I couldn't find them for weeks. Now, JS wants me to "slow down" in terms of seeing my child, despite that my child was stolen from me & I now only get phone conversations!

He's full of shit, doesn't care about families or children, and is probably getting paid off or sucked off my some of these parents who can get away with anything!