Family Law Task Force

ky-law-scales2.jpgThe legal services Family Law Task Force will meet next on:

Date: Wednesday, June 27
Time: 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. CST
Place: Warren County Justice Center note special location!
2nd Floor, Courtroom D, 1001 Center Street, Bowling Green, KY

RSVP: To register for the meeting, email Sarah Hayes at Let Sarah know of any special dietary needs for your lunch

Materials: See links below.

Conference Line Call-In:
  • Dial 1-303-248-0285
  • Enter code 233 3057

Problems calling in? Email

June 27, 2018


10:00 Welcome and Introductions
We’ll go around the room for introductions—including new co-chairs Katina Miner and Sarah Hayes.

10:15 Intersection: Family Law and Immigration

Like nature, family law abhors a vacuum. At each meeting over the next year, we’ll explore what the versatile practitioner should know about another area of law. At this meeting, KLA’s Susan Montalvo-Gesser helps us explore the intersection of family law and immigration law:
  • Who LSC-funded programs can help—and how—among immigrant family members
  • What you need to know, especially while serving members of “mixed status” families
  • Potential new “public charge” rules from the Trump administration

Kentucky Equal Justice Center’s Rich Seckel will describe work at Maxwell Street Legal Clinic to help families fill out Special Power of Attorney under KRS 403.352 and KRS 403.353 to care for children in the event of emergencies.

We’ll request CLE for this portion of the program.

11:15 Short Ones: As the World Turns and the General Assembly Adjourns

We’ll take a brief tour of new bills, cases and emerging issues that could affect your practice:

Child protection: It passed by wide margins. Kentucky’s First Lady lent support. HB 1 reworks child protection system with a view toward permanency for children. See Kentucky Youth Advocates' take on the bill here. What are the pressure points where you and your clients might see a difference? Katina and Sarah comment on key provisions. (15 minutes).

Informal removal: Kentucky’s 2017 provisions for “fictive kin” allow—and perhaps invite—short term placements for children. (See the Cabinet's manual for state agency workers and guide for fictive kin.) But does the Cabinet also makes temporary placements with family, without much in the way of procedure or support? Katina gives examples. (15 minutes).

Kentucky Equal Justice Center’s Rich Seckel will share highlights from the family law section of KEJC’s bill tracking chart. See also his one-page General Assembly Overview and special prepared Family Law Bill Tracking Chart.

11:45 Lunch

We’ll take a few minutes to grab a working lunch.

12:00 Trauma in the Courtroom: How to Engage and Advocate for Clients with Trauma

The session will be led by LCSWs Heather Webb and Lee Fowlkes. They’ll present research and clinical findings and explore three key questions:

• What do we know about the effects of trauma on parents and children?
• How can practitioners use testimony, experts and evidence in cases?
• How can knowledge of trauma effects help us work with clients?

We'll request CLE credit for this presentation, too.

1:30 Short Ones II: Joint Custody, They Presume

This year’s HB 528 creates a presumption in favor of joint custody and equal parenting time in divorce. Advocates sought a “set aside” for cases involving domestic violence but the scope was narrowed to cases with a DVO already entered. We’ll start the discussion about how to practice under the bill.

Your topic here . . .

2:00 Adjourn

Past Meetings

October 24, 2017


11:00 Welcome and Introductions

11:15 Supreme Court Refuses to Health Kentucky Foster Care Case

It was front page news. The U.S. Supreme Court has let stand the decision of the 6th Circuit Court of Appeals. We'll have a panel discussion on implications for children, parents, foster parents and legal services practice.

Panel Members

Shannon Moody and Terrance Sullivan, Kentucky Youth Advocates
Amanda Mullins Bear, Children's Law Center
Brandie Ingalls, Legal Aid of the Bluegrass

11:45 Break and Lunch

We'll break and begin a working lunch.

12:00 New Leasing protections for Victims and the Mandatory Reporting Law

Meg Savage from Kentucky Domestic Violence Association will fill us in.

12:15 CLE Presentation: QDROs Keeping You Up at Night?

Presenter: Eileen Zell, Law Office of J. Eileen Zell, PLLC, 541 Buttermilk Pike, Suite 505, PO Box 17872, Ft. Mitchell, KY 41017-0872


Introduction to retirement assets in divorce
Introduction to various retirement assets
Exploration of how to divide retirement assets in divorce
  • Three step approach
  • Best method to divide plan, identification of plan type
  • QDRO-related issues, identification of plan class
  • Resolution of QDRO-related issues, source of law
  • Practicum - Case examples
  • Practicum - Plan comparisons
  • Time permitting - Proper utilization of model QDRO forms

PowerPoint: Eileen Zell, "QDROs Keeping You Up at Night? Sleep Tight by Getting it Right."

1:15 Break

1:30 Family Law Practicum: Case Law, Peer Discussion, Legislation on the Rise

2017 Bills of Interest

HB 180 -- Establish that CHFS may approve "fictive kin" as placement for a child
HB 492 -- Create a presumption of joint custody in temporary custody orders

Will It Come Back?

HB 427 -- Require court in a divorce to hold a hearing to determine whether the marriage is irretrievably broken

2:00 Conclusion