Singing Loudly: It's all in the best interest

Singing Loudly

Friday, January 06, 2006

It's all in the best interest

It appears that it's constitutional for Nevada courts to consider the immigration status of parents in custody battles between two otherwise fit parents. In October of 2005, the Supreme Court of Nevad decided, in Rico v. Rodriguez, that Rico was less fit to raise the child than the mother. The opinion is odd in that part of the lower courts rationale was based on an incorrect reading of the Immigration code -- or no reading at all -- from the mother's attorney.

Wouldn't you think that at some point the family court judge would want to open up a copy of the Immigration and Nationality Act (or at least call a local Immigration Judge) in order to ascertain whether or not the child would be able to adjust status through one parent easier than another? Oddly, the Judge did not do this and relied on an erroneous explanation of the law provided by a biased attorney.

The odder thing is that the Nevada Supreme Court did not even blink an eye at this blunder. In fact, it claimed that the erroneous reading was harmless because it was only one of the factors taken into the "best interest of the child" test. Then it proceeded to devote a six page opinion to nothing but using immigration consequences as a factor. If it was inconsequential to the decision perhaps it shouldn't have been considered.


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