New York Matrimonial Trial Handbook
The by Joel R. Brandes is available in Bookstores and online in the print edition , . It is also available and for all ebook readers in our bookstore. The New York Matrimonial Trial Handbook is divided into five parts: (1) Preliminary Matters Prior to the Commencement of Trial, Conduct of Trial and Rules of Evidence Particularly Applicable in Matrimonial Matters; (2); Establishing Grounds for Divorce, Separation and Annulment and Defenses; (3) Obtaining Maintenance, Child Support, Exclusive Occupancy and Counsel Fees; (4) Property Distribution and Evidence of Value; and (5) Trial of a Custody Case. There are thousands of suggested questions for the examination and cross-examination of witnesses dealing with very aspect of the matrimonial trial. Click and
The New York Matrimonial Trial Handbook was reviewed by Bernard Dworkin, Esq., in the New York Law Journal on December 21, 2017. His review is reprinted on our website at with the permission of the New York Law Journal.
Joel R. Brandes, is the author of Law and The Family New York, 2d (9 volumes) (Thomson Reuters), and Law and the Family New York Forms (5 volumes) (Thomson Reuters). Law and the Family New York, 2d is a treatise and a procedural guide. Volume 4A of the treatise contains more than 950 pages devoted to an analysis of the Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction and the International Child Abduction Remedies Act. It contains a complete discussion of the cases construing the Convention which have been decided by the United States Supreme Court, the Circuit Courts of Appeal, the District Courts, and the New York Courts.
Wednesday, June 14, 2017
Oliver A v Diana Pina B, --- N.Y.S.3d ----, 2017 WL 2467202, 2017 N.Y. Slip Op. 04548 (1st Dept., 2017) [Norway][Grave Risk of Harm][Petition denied]
The Appellate Division observed that a petition will be denied if the parent opposing return of a child establishes “by clear and convincing evidence” the exception set forth in article 13b of the Convention (22 USC § 9003[e][A] )—namely, that “there is a grave risk that [the child’s] return would expose the child to physical or psychological harm or otherwise place the child in an intolerable situation” (Hague Convention art 13 [b] ). It noted that the determination of a child’s “habitual residence” requires inquiry into the “shared intent” of the parents “at the latest time that their intent was shared,” taking into account the parents’ “actions [and] declarations,” as well as “whether the evidence unequivocally points to the conclusion that the child has acclimatized to the new location and thus has acquired a new habitual residence, notwithstanding any conflict with the parents’ latest shared intent” (Mota, 692 F3d at 112, quoting Gitter v.. Gitter, 396 F3d 124, 134 [2d Cir2005] ).
Although the record supported Family Court’s determination that the parties’ last shared intent was to return to Norway, the court did not consider the mother’s evidence that the children had been acclimatized to New York, and whether that evidence trumped the parents’ shared intent (see also Hofmann v. Sender, 716 F3d 282 [2d Cir2013] ). It concluded that the mother met her burden to show, by clear and convincing evidence, that the children’s return to Norway would result in a grave risk of harm to them (Blondin v. Dubois, 189 F3d 240, 245 [2d Cir1999] ). The mother presented detailed testimony of multiple acts of domestic abuse towards her by the father, at times in the presence of the parties’ children. She also presented corroborating evidence, including the testimony of the maternal grandmother, who witnessed two of the violent incidents, including the February 2014 incident, and testified to visible signs of injury to her daughter, which was also noted in a Domestic Incident Report. The mother also submitted copies of text messages sent by the father threatening the mother’s life. She further showed that the father had a propensity for violent abuse, as demonstrated by his violent acts, jealous rages, and, on at least two instances, forceful treatment toward the older daughter (see Ermini v. Vittori, 758 F3d 153, 164–165 [2d Cir2014]; Souratgar v. Lee, 720 F3d 96, 104 [2d Cir2013]; Blondin, 189 F3d at 247). The mother presented evidence that the nature of the abuse was such that it would inevitably resume if the parties were reunited. The father acknowledged that the parties fought over the mother’s infidelity, but broadly denied the mother’s claims, other than admitting to pushing or grabbing the mother to restrain her. His testimony, however, was entirely uncorroborated. The mother further presented evidence that, as a noncitizen of Norway, there would be minimal, if any, domestic violence resources available to her if she were to move there with the children, and that, due to her immigration status, she would not be allowed to live there for more than 90 days.