Sunday, July 15, 2012

Jailed for approving marriage

ABC News reports:
Ordered by a family court judge to enroll his 16-year-old son in a Utah board school, a Florida millionaire instead took a detour to Las Vegas where he signed papers that allowed the child to marry his housekeeper's daughter. That act legally emancipated the son but landed the dad in a Florida jail, where he's started serving a 180-day jail sentence for contempt of court. ...

The marriage legally emancipated Peter Rotta. As a result, the court's mandate to Dan Rotta, which required him to enroll his son in Logan Academy, was rendered irrelevant, since Peter was now considered an adult.

"The consent by the father Dan Rotta to Peter Rotta's marriage was intended to thwart the jurisdiction of the court," court documents said.

But Lewis said that following the Vegas marriage, Dan Rotta and his son did visit Logan River Academy but the school had already decided they were not going to continue to consider Peter for admission.

"He was on his way to the school when he received a notice by email that [Logan River] wasn't accepting him," said Lewis.
This is an example of the evils of family court judge interference. No judge should be ordering a parent to ship a kid off to boarding school. That is a decision for the parents. The law also gives the parents authority to give permission for marriage. Age 16 seems young to me, but opinions differ about this. If you think 16 is too young, then lobby to change the law.

But 180 days in jail? These judges have way too much power.

1 comment:

Cynthia said...

One of the biggest problems is the insistence on referring to a 16yo as a "child". "Son" would work just as well. Here, when a child is 13, he can withhold medical records from his parents. Crazy, but definitely not in line with court-ordering a 16yo to attend school at a certain place. Was the school a parental dispute?