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Jennifer McCaskill
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Following rules: same-sex couples and divorce

Faced with divorce and child custody matters, New Jersey couples are almost universally better off to handle matters outside of court. Aside from being able to hammer out the details themselves, staying out of court avoids the risk of contempt charges connected to same-sex couples and divorce. One man learned the heard way that following the rules is absolutely imperative in any court setting. 

The man was attending a conference to work out child custody details with his former wife. There were signs posted in the building that clearly stated that cell phone use was not permitted in the courthouse. Despite those warnings, the man decided to use his phone to record the meeting. 

A court worker noticed, and the man was advised that his actions were in violation of the law. A sheriff's deputy was called, but the man left the courthouse before the deputy arrived. He then posted the recording on Facebook and was subsequently arrested. He claimed that he had no idea that his actions were against the law, but the prosecutor was only required to prove that a violation took place, not that there was an intent behind the actions. 

He was sentenced to between 11 and 23 months in prison for his actions. He appealed, but the higher court upheld that sentence. His case is an example of the importance of following each and every rule laid out by a court of law. For same-sex couples and divorce cases in New Jersey, this matter illustrates the importance of staying out of court whenever possible. 

Source: pennlive.com, "Dad deserves jail term for recording child custody hearing, Pa. court says", Matt Miller, Jan. 4, 2018

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