Posts tagged "I.S.H."

I.S.H. v. M.D.B. (Lawyers Weekly No. 11-056-13)

NOTICE:  All slip opinions and orders are subject to formal revision and are superseded by the advance sheets and bound volumes of the Official Reports.  If you find a typographical error or other formal error, please notify the Reporter of Decisions, Supreme Judicial Court, John Adams Courthouse, 1 Pemberton Square, Suite 2500, Boston, MA 02108-1750;  (617) 557-1030;       11‑P‑224                                        Appeals Court   I.S.H.  vs.  M.D.B.     No. 11‑P‑224. Norfolk.     November 27, 2012.  ‑  May 1, 2013. Present:  Kafker, Cohen, & Trainor, JJ.   Jurisdiction, Personal, Paternity proceeding.  Probate Court, Paternity proceeding.  Paternity.  Due Process of Law, Jurisdiction over nonresident.       Complaint to establish paternity filed in the Norfolk Division of the Probate and Family Court Department on October 12, 2007.   The case was heard by Angela M. Ordonez, J., and a motion for relief from judgment was also heard by her.     Lloyd D. Godson for M.D.B. I.S.H., pro se.     KAFKER, J.  At issue in this case are numerous questions regarding personal jurisdiction over the defendant (father).  The plaintiff (mother) moved with her child from Florida to Massachusetts allegedly due to domestic violence by the father, a Florida resident and the putative father of the child.  In the Probate and Family Court (Probate Court) in Massachusetts, the mother sought and received a paternity judgment against the father, which included orders for payment of child support and uninsured medical expenses.  The father had been served but had not appeared in person or through counsel until after the judgment entered and contempt proceedings had begun against him.  Thereafter he filed a pro se modification request, essentially denying the allegations of domestic abuse, claiming that he expected all matters to be dealt with in Florida, and contesting the substance of the order.  He then hired counsel, who filed a motion pursuant to Mass.R.Dom.Rel.P. 60(b)(4) based on lack of jurisdiction.  The probate judge denied the motion on the grounds that the father had been served, judgment had entered after the period for filing an answer had expired, and the father had filed a modification request after the paternity judgment entered. The father appeals, contending that the Probate Court lacked personal jurisdiction over him at the time the paternity judgment entered and that he never waived this defense.  The mother argues that either the Probate Court had personal jurisdiction over the father because his domestic violence forced her to flee to Massachusetts, or the father subsequently waived any objection to jurisdiction.  We conclude that the father has not waived his personal jurisdiction defense by either failing to appear prior to the paternity judgment or filing a pro se modification request that included an objection to […]


Posted by Massachusetts Legal Resources - May 1, 2013 at 3:26 pm

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