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Courts, Child Welfare Partners Coordinate Efforts regarding Foster Care

By Csaba Sukosd | March 25, 2019

Every year, thousands of children in Ohio are impacted by the judicial system through no fault of their own. It’s a reality that compels courts and child welfare agencies to coordinate their efforts to ensure the safety and stability of such juveniles who end up in foster care.

On Thursday, representatives from across the state came to the Thomas J. Moyer Ohio Judicial Center to focus on abuse, neglect, and dependency dockets. The goal of the caseflow management course – hosted by the Ohio Supreme Court in conjunction with the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services and its Office of Families and Children – was to streamline practices with the goal of helping children find stable and permanent outcomes regarding where they live and who takes care of them as a guardian.

Read the full article in Court News Ohio

Vacationing with children post-divorce

by | Mar 7, 2019 | Timely Topics |

In addition to divvying up the finances, many couples spend the majority of the divorce process discussing the custody of their children. In most cases, parents create a shared parenting plan that lays out the details of their arrangement. Unfortunately, vacation time – and any time away from school – is often overlooked. It’s much easier to agree on the day-to-day whereabouts of the kids.

With spring break and summer vacation on the horizon, here are a few things to discuss with your ex.

  1. Plan far in advance. Regardless of how flexible your daily custody arrangement is, vacation time should be determined far enough in advance to allow ample time for planning. Summer vacation days, spring break and other vacations should be divided evenly between both parents. An every-other-year approach to certain holidays works well, too.
  1. Share the details. When taking your children on a vacation, it’s important to communicate the details of your trip to your ex. He or she has a right to know where you’re going and for how long, as well as information about how to reach you. If you’re leaving the country, you will also need a signed and notarized travel consent form from your ex.

Read the full article here

Ohio-based court rules tire-chalking for parking enforcement unconstitutional

The age-old parking-enforcement practice of tire-chalking is unconstitutional, a federal appeals court in Cincinnati ruled Monday, saying that it violated the Fourth Amendment’s prohibition of unreasonable searches.

A three-judge panel of the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, in a first-of-its-kind decision, ruled that marking a car’s tires to gather information is a form of trespass requiring a warrant, similar to police attaching a GPS to a vehicle to track a suspected drug dealer.

Parking attendants across the country have been chalking tires with big white lines for decades in zones without meters to enforce time limits and issue tickets. It’s a substantial source of revenue for many cities.

The decision, while undoubtedly bringing joy to parking scofflaws everywhere, could cost some cities money, either from lost revenue or having to install more meters.

On the other hand, as Fourth Amendment expert Orin Kerr of the University of Southern California law school tweeted, it “seems easy enough these days for parking enforcers to just take a photo of the car, or even just a close-up photo of the tire, rather than chalk it. … No 4A issues then.”

Read the full article in The Columbus Dispatch here

Ohio’s Efforts to Form Opioid Pact Repeated in New England

By Csaba Sukosd | March 13, 2019 – Court News Ohio

The Ohio Supreme Court initiative that brought eight states together to fight the opioid epidemic is being replicated by the six New England states.

Chief justices from Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, and Vermont have formed the New England Regional Judicial Opioid Initiative (NE RJOI).

Ohio Supreme Court Chief Justice Maureen O’Connor and fellow chief justices, government, law enforcement, health officials and academics from Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan, North Carolina, Tennessee, and West Virginia convened in Cincinnati in August 2016 to create the Regional Judicial Opioid Initiative (RJOI).

Read the full article here

Sealed Records Expand Hope

For someone who has been arrested but never convicted of a crime or has had their case dismissed, removing a case record from the public offers fairness. For those with convictions who finish their court-ordered sentences, removing public access to case documents gives them a chance to move forward.

 

When individuals end up in court because of poor choices or mistakes, big or small, they pay a penalty. They may serve community control, pay fines, or spend time in jail or prison. After finishing their court-ordered punishment, though, people often experience the negative stigma surrounding a conviction that presents obstacles to moving forward in their lives.

To build toward a more productive life, a person at a minimum will need some basics — housing, a job, maybe education. The ability to seal or expunge a criminal record helps those who’ve completed their sentence to make strides in new directions.

Read the full article here