Parents with child custody disputes in Philadelphia are dealing with year-long wait times to get their days in court. This backlog is impacting thousands of families and leaving children in limbo.
Child Custody Backlog
According to Philadelphia court statistics, the backlog in the child custody cases has been growing for the last three years. Chair of the family section of the Philadelphia Bar Association, Meredith Brennan, dates the problem back to 2010 when there were revisions made to the state’s custody act. The revisions require lengthy evaluations of the parent that is requesting custody has a criminal record, or if anyone in the proposed household has a criminal record. The intention of the evaluations were to keep children safe, but according to Brennan, they have just ironically created potential risks. As Brennan recently said, the time spent waiting for the evaluation to be done and for the outcome to be ruled on “means that children can be in fairly dangerous situations while they’re awaiting that day in court.”
Other Factors Contributing to Child Support Backlog
Other factors that are contributing to the backlog include the city’s high poverty rate. If people are dealing with a tough financial situation they most likely do not have the means to pay a lawyer that will help speed up the process. Even further, they are most likely not able to pay court fees that might allow for services such as mediation.
Help for Child Custody Backlog
Assistance for the backlog is coming as the Pennsylvania Supreme Court has reassigned three trial judges to Family Court to do nothing but hear custody cases through the end of the year. Hopefully this will ease the wait time and ensure the kids stuck in the middle are no longer in limbo.
For advice on child custody disputes and all it’s aspects, you need the expert law firm of Korol and Velen, certified family law specialists. Schedule a consultation today.