-vs- Index #H-04197





Pro Se


(Denis A. Scinta, Esq.

of Counsel) for Defendant



Defendant moved for an order to (1) to enforce his access

to his children for legal holidays, especially either

Christmas Day or Christmas Eve 1994; (2) weekday evenings (3)

family counseling (4) access to extra curricular activities,

all of which were ordered by this Court in its Judgment of

Divorce. Plaintiff appears Pro Se.

After argument on motion, the parties stipulated and the

Court approved that defendant have the children December 23,

1994, overnight to the evening of December 24th, and again on

the 26th; that Plaintiff would have the children the 27th for

a trip to Canada; and Defendant would have the children New

Year weekend.

The Court reaffirmed its order for counseling and made

arrangements with Charles Weis, Executive Director of Family

Services to see the family.

Mr. Weis reported he saw the family and determined that

conditions necessary for joint sessions - mutual respect,

trust, commonality of counseling goals - do not exist; he

concludes further family centered counseling would not be

useful; that individual counseling would be beneficial only if

requested by each party.

Nathaniel L. Barone,II, Esq., law guardian, again met

with the children and filed his report with the Court only.

That report clearly shows that these children have been the

innocent victims of this matrimonial history. As observed by

Hon. Marianne Espinosa Murphy, who wrote in Redbook magazine

April 1995:

"When parents divorce, time with children can

to easily become turf. In a misguided effort to

prove they love their children, parents allow

child related issues to become one more battle-


"My interviews with children of divorce made me

acutely aware of the price they pay when their

parents can't or won't resolve their differences."


"Children are bound to be disappointed and some-

times hurt by things their parents do. Divorce

doesn't enable one parent to shield a child from

the thoughtlessness of the other - in fact, it may

well sharpen the child's already keen ability to

detect a parent's shortcomings.

"Some parents DO navigate divorce without scuttling

their children's childhood. From what I have seen,

these parents are more concerned with their child's

welfare than with wining. They respect the child's

right to a relationship with both parents and

don't "help" the child by pointing out their ex's


"The decision to divorce is always painful,

especially when there are children. If you choose

to divorce, acknowledge the pain, and remember

that frequently the best way to win is to forget

to keep score. "

Plaintiff was directed by the Court to submit an

affidavit in response to the affidavit of Defendant on this

motion that could be in the form of the statement she prepared

for her Court appearance on this motion, provided she swore or

affirmed to the truth of it as provided by law. She was

directed to send a copy of her affidavit or statement, to the

Court, to defendant's attorney and to the law guardian. This

she did not do.

Neither did she prepare for the Court the report directed

in the order. The defendant did comply.

The Court expected a more positive response from

plaintiff; she is a writer; she is educated; she is

articulate; she appears to care for her children.

Notwithstanding her positive reports on the PEACE

program, the plaintiff has placed at least one of her children

in the middle of tardy support payments. This is highly


It also appears plaintiff has not kept defendant informed

of activities of the children; nor has he received information

concerning report cards of at least one of the children.

Upon the arguments on the motion, the in camera

discussions with the parties, the submissions of the parties,

it is hereby

ORDERED, that the Law Guardian interview each parent and

step parent and step children at their respective homes and

report to the Court; and

ORDERED, that the Court and Law Guardian conduct in

camera meetings with the children, following which the Court

will determine the type of counseling appropriate for this

family; and

ORDERED, that each parent at all times shall have:

1) the right of access to all health and

educational records of the children;

2) the right to consult with any professional

rendering care to the children;

3) the right to consult with school officials

concerning the child's welfare and educational

status, including school activities;

4) the right to notice of and to attend school


5) the right to be designated on all records as a

person to be notified in cause of emergency;

6) the father is to be kept informed of events involving the children such as baptisms, school activities and accomplishments, report cards, etc; that if the parties cannot discuss matters over the telephone or in person, that they communicate in writing or through the Law Guardian; and

Each parent during his or her parenting time shall have:

1) the duty of care, control, protection and

reasonable discipline of the children;

2) the duty to support the children including

providing the children with clothing, food,

shelter, medical and dental care not involving

invasive procedure; and

3) the power to consent to medical, dental and

surgical treatment during an emergency

involving immediate danger to the health and

safety of the children.

ORDERED, that because this Decision and Order contains

matters and topics personal to the parties but not relevant to

the school, the Court directs defendant to draft a separate

Order directing school officials to provide both parents with

information about the Lampard children and advising them of

the rights of each parent pertaining to the school as recited


ORDERED, that both parties are to refrain from forcing

the children to take sides and refrain from criticizing,

condemning, ridiculing, complaining about or making any

negative comments whatsoever to the children about the other

party or their families under potential penalty of fines and

sanctions; and

ORDERED, that the fee for counseling from Family Service

shall be submitted to defendant's health insurance carrier

within 30 days; the Court will determine how the uninsured

amount is to be paid and by whom after learning the outcome of

the claim; and

ORDERED, that this motion be adjourned to May 15, 1995,

at 11 o'clock in the forenoon, unless otherwise adjourned by

the Court.

Dated: April 13, 1995

Mayville, New York



Justice of Supreme Court