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Courts - USA - Supreme Court rules no rights for fathers

U.S. Supreme Court Wrongly Decides Fathers Have No Rights, Says Attorney
6/14/2004 5:29:00 PM

To: National and Metro Desks, Legal Reporter
Contact: Jane Spies, 330-534-8948, or Lark5000@aol.com; or Jeffery Leving, 312-807-3990, ext. 291, both of The Law Offices of Jeffery M. Leving, Ltd.; Web: http://www.dadsrights.com
CHICAGO, June 14 /U.S. Newswire/ -- The following was released today by fathers' rights attorney Jeffery M. Leving on the case concerning Michael Newdow, which was thrown out of the U.S. Supreme Court:
Michael Newdow's case was thrown out of the U.S. Supreme Court because the highest court in the land says he does not have standing as a noncustodial father to make legal decisions for his daughter.
According to fathers' rights attorney Jeffery M. Leving, this U.S. Supreme Court decision deals a cruel blow to fathers and children and opens up a Pandora's box of custody litigation for the future because now only custodial parents will have rights.
"This is a dark day for noncustodial fathers and mothers, about 14 million of them nationwide," said Leving, author of the book, Fathers' Rights. "The shocking ramifications of this ruling are just beginning to set in. The U.S. Supreme Court has decided that noncustodial parents are not parents. The vast majority of noncustodial parents are fathers," according to Leving.
Despite all the recent government rhetoric promoting fatherhood, Attorney Leving says this decision has set a damaging precedent that fathers have responsibilities without rights.
Leving says the high court has said something to this effect: You are a fit parent. You have had an excellent day to day relationship with your child who loves you dearly. You go to family court. You amicably settle the custody case to avoid litigation, and you become a noncustodial parent. As a result, your fundamental right to protect your child is stripped away, and you become a Disneyland Dad.
"Because of this U.S. Supreme Court decision, it is now almost impossible to preserve one's parental rights by settling custody litigation and accepting the role of noncustodial parent. Avoiding gut-wrenching custody litigation will no longer be possible. Our legal system has just become much more adversarial. Figuratively, the high court has just thrown gasoline on a fire that is already out of control. Children do not need more litigation, they need both parents," said Leving.
Leving believes that the U.S. Supreme Court justices, in the process of circumventing the pledge question, have made a ruling that will deeply hurt children and family values.
"Fathers are parents, too," said Attorney Leving.
For more information visit http://www.dadsrights.com
Jeffery M. Leving received his Juris Doctor from IIT-Chicago Kent College of Law in 1979. He is licensed to practice law in Illinois, the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois, the U.S. 7th Circuit Court of Appeals and the U.S. Supreme Court.
His professional associations include the Chicago and Illinois State Bar Associations; the Federal Trial Bar; the Decalogue Society of Lawyers; and the Association of Trial Lawyers of America.
His past experience includes co-authorship of the 1986 Illinois Joint Custody Law, and testimony before both branches of the Illinois Legislature on Joint Custody, Grandparent's Visitation and Child Support Accountability bills. He is the author of the book, Fathers' Rights.
He has lectured on family law issues and has also made numerous television and radio appearances. His law practice is concentrated in Matrimonial and Family Law and he heads a team of aggressive attorneys.
The firm was founded in 1981 by Jeffery M. Leving who is a national litigator and consultant. Leving received the Recognition and Commendation Award for Meritorious Service to the Public and Legal Community from the Illinois State Bar Association.
Leving was the Chicago Attorney from the Elian Gonzalez case. He represented Manuel Gonzalez, at Juan Miguel's request, to be designated as Elian's care giver in the early stages of the federal case.
Leving was invited as an expert on CNN, CNBC, MSNBC, Fox National News and Court TV to analyze the Elian Gonzalez case. The Law Offices of Jeffery M. Leving, Ltd. is possibly one of the only law firms in the country focused almost exclusively on men's issues.

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