Appellate Findings (Hawaii):

NO. 28562

Maria Styke, Petitioner-Appellant
v.
Bruce Anthony Soltelo, Jr., Respondent-Appellee

Quick Summary: Tanaka erred in dissolving TRO for "lack of prosecution" in Domestic Violence case.  Definitions regarding "mandatory" and "directory" application of statutes by the Court, as well as interpretation of "shall"in relation to "directory" application.

Link to ICA Opinion

Family Court Judges involved: Keith Tanaka

DATED: Honolulu, Hawai‘i, March 31, 2010


NO. 28045

State of Hawaii, Plaintiff-Appellee
v.
Tuan Quoc Nguyen, Defendant-Appellee

Quick Summary: Regarding sufficiency of evidence to establish 1-count of Terroristic Threatening.

Link to ICA Opinion

Family Court Judges involved: Patrick Border

DATED: Honolulu, Hawai‘i, March 25, 2010


NO. 29370

H.K., Plaintiff-Appellant
v.
R.L., Defendant-Appellee

Quick Summary: Appeal is found without merit.  Property division specifications defined.

Link to ICA Opinion

Family Court Judges involved: Kenneth Enright

DATED: Honolulu, Hawai‘i, March 11, 2010


NO. 29147

In the matter of the Adoption of 

A FEMALE CHILD, BORN ON OCTOBER 3, 2004

Quick Summary: ICA Judgement reversed, Writ of Cetori

Link to ICA Opinion

Family Court Judges involved: Recktenwald, Foley, Nakamura

DATED: Honolulu, Hawai‘i, January 25, 2010

Update:

Link to ICA Opinion

DATED: Honolulu, Hawai‘i, March 4, 2010

Quick Summary: Family Court lacked subject matter jurisdiction


NO. 28849

STATE OF HAWAII, Respondent/Plaintiff-Appellee,
v.
DOUGLAS MILLER,Petitioner/Defendant-Appellee

Quick Summary: ICA Judgement reversed, Writ of Cetori

Link to ICA Opinion

Family Court Judges involved: Recktenwald, Foley, Nakamura

DATED: Honolulu, Hawai‘i, January 25, 2010


NO. 30032

In the interest of M. A. and
In the interest of H.W.,

Quick Summary: Family Court erred in failing to make sufficient findings of fact to support its conclusion; that the family court's statement of evidence, by itself, it not a finding of fact.  Misstatement by Family Court  regarding the testimony of Mother's counselor, as admitted by DHS. Permanent Custody Order revoked.

Link to ICA Opinion

Family Court Judges involved: Geronimo Valdriz, Jr.

DATED: Honolulu, Hawai‘i, April 16, 2010


NO. 27984

JAN MICHAEL WEINBERG, Plaintiff-Appellee,
v.
BRENDA IRENE DICKSON-WEINBERG, Defendant-Appellant

Quick Summary: Section C and G from the prior ICA finding are vacated.  They uphold prior ICA findings that Family Court abused it's discretion with respect to pretrial deadlines and sanctions barring evidence.  All other aspects were affirmed.

Link to ICA Opinion

Family Court Judges involved: Choy, Radius

DATED: First Circuit, April 7, 2010


NO. 29312

NIRMALA DEVI RAO, Plaintiff-Appellee/Cross-Appellant,
v.
RAMLU A RAO, Defendant-Appellant/Cross-Appellee

Quick Summary: Judicial abuses of discretion in modifying child support without proof of substantial and material change of circumstances and reliance on a rejected pre-decree stipulation.

Link to ICA Opinion

Family Court Judges involved: Keith E. Tanaka, Simone C. Polak

DATED: First Circuit, December 11, 2009


NO. 29064

ALICE A. STOMBER, Plaintiff-Appellee,
v.
STEPHEN J. STOMBER, Defendant-Appellant

Quick Summary: ICA finds:  Family Court denied rights to Due Process, Orders vacated and case remanded for further processing before a different judge.

Link to ICA Opinion

Family Court Judges involved: Bode A. Uale

DATED: Honolulu, Hawai‘i, August 27, 2009


NO. 28843

MELINDA LOUISE CHEE, Plaintiff-Appellant,
v.
KEVIN SUN WAI CHEE, Defendant-Appellee

Quick Summary: ICA vacates: 1) the Custody Order to the extent that it grants sole custody of H.C. to Father; 2) the ex parte orders issued by the family court on November 1, 2000, and November 6, 2000, which materially affected the decision of the family court to grant sole custody to Father in the Custody Order; and 3) the order regarding the January 2007 Post-Decree Motion issued by the family court on March 30, 2007, to the extent that it denied Mother's request that Father pay her attorney's fees and costs for prior hearings and actions. We remand the case for further proceedings consistent with this Memorandum Opinion.

Link to ICA Opinion

Family Court Judges involved: Allene R. Suemori, R. Mark Browning,  and Karen M. Radius

DATED: Honolulu, Hawai‘i, June 19, 2009


NO. 28912

CHERYL S. FERREIRA
v.
NELSON C. FERREIRA

Quick Summary: Abuse of Judicial Discretion by failing to include income when there was a  preponderance of evidence to the contrary;  failing to acknowledge tax consequences of real property sale; inclusion of erroneous information in Decree.

Link to ICA Opinion

Family Court Judges involved: Barclay E. McDonald, Eric G. Romanchak

DATED: Honolulu, Hawai‘i, November 18, 2009


NO. 27984

JAN MICHAEL WEINBERG, Plaintiff-Appellee,
v.
BRENDA IRENE DICKSON-WEINBERG, Defendant-Appellant

Quick Summary: Findings of severe abuses of judicial discretion regarding property and Due Process

Link to ICA Opinion

Family Court Judges involved: Choy, Radius

DATED: First Circuit, October 14, 2009



NO. 27490

JOHN DOE, Plaintiff
v.
JANE DOE, Defendant

Quick Summary: Mother found to have been denied constitutional "due process" and "access to the courts" because she was restricted in her access to case files termed "confidential".  this also limited her ability to adequately prepare for hearing and trial, especially when representing herself.

Link to ICA Opinion

Family Court Judges involved: Karen Radius

DATED: Honolulu, Hawai‘i, June 30, 2008


NO. 27580

LILY E. HAMILTON, on behalf of
AMBER J. LETHEM, a minor, Petitioner-Appellee,
v.
CHRIS L. LETHEM, Respondent-Appellant

Quick Summary: Exceptions to Mootness doctrine and legal application

Link to ICA Opinion

Family Court Judges involved: Darryl Y.C. Choy

DATED: Honolulu, Hawai‘i, May 16, 2008


NO. 27032

LUCIE M. BENCOMO, Plaintiff-Appellee,
v.
DEREK A. BENCOMO, Defendant-Appellant

Quick Summary: Mother found to have been denied constitutional "due process" and "access to the courts" because she was restricted in her access to case files termed "confidential".  This also limited her ability to adequately prepare for hearing and trial, especially when representing herself. Also family court is not authorized by statute or otherwise to delegate its decision-making authority to the guardian ad litem and when the family court orders that one parent shall have only supervised visitation with a child, it must be as specific as is reasonably possible regarding the details such as the supervisor, the place, the day and the time.

Link to ICA Opinion

Family Court Judges involved: Eric G. Romanchak, Simone C. Polak

DATED: Second Circuit, November 2, 2006

 


NO. 24697

In the Interest of DOE CHILDREN
JOHN, Born on January 27, 1987
and
JANE, Born on July 31, 1988,
minors

Quick Summary: (1) that GALs do not have standing to pursue an IDEA claim and cannot avail themselves of the "futility exception" to the requirement of administrative exhaustion; (2) that the district family courts may not exercise judicial review of administrative proceedings conducted pursuant to the IDEA; and (3) that the district family courts lack subject matter jurisdiction, under any circumstances, to order the DOE to alter a child's grade placement

Link to ICA Opinion

Family Court Judges involved: John C. Bryant, Jr

DATED: Honolulu, Hawai‘i, June 16, 2004


NO. 22878

DOROTHY SUSAN HALL, Plaintiff-Appellee/Cross-Appellant,
v.
BRADLEY ROSS HALL, Defendant-Appellant/Cross-Appellee

Quick Summary: Definitions on "good cause" for allowing appeal when deadlines have passed.

Link to ICA Opinion

Family Court Judges involved: Warrington, Suemori

DATED: First Circuit, February 8, 2001


Appellate Findings (other states):

NO. 506543

RICKEY Z., Appellant
v.
DENISE Z., Appellant

Quick Summary: Judicial abuse occurred because  factual findings of culpability against Mother without formal charges were made;  children were removed from Mother's home while depriving her of hearing, violating her basic right to due process.  Court was holding Mother accountable for not protecting children from abuser though she denied any knowledge.

Link to ICA Opinion

DATED: New York , March 11, 2010


NO. 6461, Supreme Court No. S-13465

JHYSHAIN WEE, Appellant,
v.
CHARLES EGGENER, Appellee

Quick Summary: Unmarried parents and one child. Father has history of Domestic Abuse but was awarded joint legal and shared physical custody.  Father also requested (and was granted) a no contact order against Mother.  Mother argued that court may not award custody unless statutory rebuttable presumption has been overcome and it had not.  Orders were vacated re: custody and no contact order.

Link to ICA Opinion

DATED: New York , March 12, 2010


NO. 06-J-00120 & 06-J-00120-004

S.R., MOTHER, Appellant,
v.
J.N., FATHER; AND
D.N., A MINOR CHILD, Appellee

Quick Summary: Custody restored to Mother after it was removed by unsubstantiated allegations against her by complainant, who failed to present a preponderance of evidence, as was his responsibility.  The court failed to determine the truth or falsity of the statements which was its statutory obligation and and allegations were not supported by "substantial evidence",  "Substantial Evidence" [Owens-Corning Fiberglas Corp. v. Golightly, 976 S.W.2d 409, 414 (Ky. 1998)] is defined as “evidence of substance and relevant consequence having the fitness to induce conviction in the minds of reasonable [people].”

Link to ICA Opinion

DATED: Kentucky,  March 26, 2010


NO. 2010 VT 32

Debra L. Whippie
v.
Robert E. O'Connor.

Quick Summary: Appellate Court affirms that 1) lower court's findings were not supported by evidence; 2) In determining the equities, the lower court was swayed by irrelevant sympathy; 3)lower court failed to consider available evidence and that the court accounting included arithmetic errors and factors outside the scope of partition.

 Link to ICA Opinion

DATED: Virginia,  April 16, 2010


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