December 28, 2015

Thank you for Judicial Action Regarding Parenting Education

I thanked her privately in our conversation last week.  But a public “Thank You” to The Honorable Elizabeth A. Bozzuto, Chief Administrative Judge for the Family Division, is in order.  Judge Bozzuto has just made it easier for couples with minor children to take advantage of the new expedited divorce process.

As of October 1, 2015,  the law authorizes a judge to waive the so-called 90 day waiting period. But, as I shared with Judge Bozzuto, the law didn’t address a practical obstacle for couples with minor children—parents  couldn’t enroll in the mandatory Parenting Education Program until after the legal case had started and the State assigned the couple with their own official docket number.

Having learned about this practical obstacle to expedited divorce, Judge Bozzuto acted quickly.  The result—divorcing parents may now enroll and complete the Parenting Education Program before the legal divorce case has started.

From now on I’m advising my clients to enroll and complete the Parenting Education Program as soon as they decide to divorce.  Of course there are procedural advantages to doing so— it will help them qualify for the expedited divorce process.  But, maybe even more importantly, there are real substantive benefits to the divorcing couple and their kids—-Mom and Dad can apply what they learn in the Parenting Education Program first, to help their kids transition through separation and divorce, and second, to create a better parenting plan.

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