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Dutchess_III's avatar

Can someone explain this legal summons to me?

Asked by Dutchess_III (36137points) August 21st, 2010

Background: My daughter, we’ll call her Corrie, had a baby by a guy, who we’ll call Steve Jones. My daughter and Steve got along fine in terms of their son, whom we will call Aden, until Steve married the Woman From Hell. Since they got married, the WFH has made it her mission to make Corrie miserable. The only way she can do this, of course, is through Aden via Steve. They started child support proceedings about two years ago, although Corrie has Aden 48% of the time. Steve makes about $20 and hour, the WFH works if she wants, doesn’t if she doesn’t want to. Corrie makes between $8.00 and $10.00 an hour…..between bouts of unemployment. Corrie has been helpless to fight their never ending onslaught of motions and hearings and court orders regarding visitation, child support, anything you can imagine.

Well, Corrie finally got the money to get some good legal representation. She asked for one extra day with her son,among other small things, Steve said said “No” (if it was just him he would have had no problem with the requests, but he didn’t want to go home to the WFH and face her if he’d compromised) so Corrie’s attorney set a court date for August 26th, at 2:00, so the judge could decide all of this.

WELL, today (Saturday, so she can’t call her attorney) Corrie was served with papers that commanded her to be in court on the August 26th at 1:30 (which is on the same day as the original hearing called by Corrie’s attorney, but 30 minutes earlier) as a witness for Steve Jones. Say what? To make things even more confusing, they were demanding that she bring her income tax filings for the last three years. She also got a $10 check written on Steve’s attorney’s office because she was called as a witness. I don’t know what that was all about either, but I guess that’s quid pro quo in Kansas if you’re called as a witness.

Can anyone tell me what’s up? What are they scheming?

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6 Answers

Seaofclouds's avatar

I’m not a lawyer or familiar with child support or custody issues in Kansas, so I could be wrong.

It sounds like they are calling her as a witness to talk about what she makes financially. I don’t really understand why they would be calling her as a witness though. The tax filings would be used in determining child support (though I don’t know why they would need to go back that far). The $10 check makes no sense either.

I would have her call her lawyer as soon as possible and whatever she does, tell her not to cash the check or deposit it into her account until after she talks to her lawyer about it.

BarnacleBill's avatar

I sounds like they are trying to establish that Steve Jones contributes more than 50% of the Aden’s financial support, and want to establish that before the custody hearing.

I agree—do not cash or deposit the check.

Dr_Lawrence's avatar

First of all, Is it not counter to her own interests for Corrie in which she is the Respondent for her to be subpoenaed to testify on behalf of the Petitioner.

She should not accept the fee. She should return it to Steve Jones’ attorney refusing to testify on his behalf.

The WFH’s income does not enter into the case in some jurisdictions. If Steve’s income exceeds Corries, she should be entitled to child support, not Steve.

She should consult her attorney before taking any action.
She may request a closed hearing so that only the parents and their legal counsel be allowed into the court to prevent undue influence of third parties on the litigants.

Dutchess_III's avatar

@all ya’ll. I totally agree with the not-cashing-the-check. I told her as much. Also, of course the first thing we wanted to do was contact her attorney but it’s Saturday.

@Dr_Lawrence Steve’s income exceeds Corries by a LOT. BUT, since he has Aden 52% of the time they’ve managed to rig it so that she pays $132 in child support to them. It’s been a nightmare. They basically did what ever they wanted and she didn’t have the money to fight it. They even sent the original notice of the support hearings to a non-existent address and go away with it. Now that she has a real attorney we’re hoping to get the crap settled once and for all.

Also, @Dr_Lawrence What do you mean by “Is it not counter to her own interests for Corrie in which she is the Respondent for her to be subpoenaed to testify on behalf of the Petitioner.” ?

Dr_Lawrence's avatar

It seems odd for the petitioners attorney to ask the respondent to testify against her own interests as a witness for the petitioner.

That is what I meant.

Dutchess_III's avatar

Thanks guys. Not sure what all the wording was about, but they just had their hearing. It was a wash. They didn’t “gain” anything (they wanted to cut her time down to every other weekend…basically, cut her out of his school life) and she didn’t lose anything. Everything stays the same. They were shocked! They’ve been riding roughshod over her almost unchallenged for so long that they just couldn’t believe they weren’t just handed what they wanted again!

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