Governor Christie’s nomination of Judge David F. Bauman to the State Supreme Court has prompted a mid-term reassignment of the Superior Court Judges in Monmouth County.
Assignment Judge Lawrence M. Lawson told MMM that effective January 2, 2013 Judge Paul Escandon is transfered from Family Court to Civil Court, Judge Honora O’Brien Kilgallen will move from Civil Court to Criminal Court, Judge Linda Grasso-Jones will switch from hearing Civil matters to Family matters, and Judge James J. McGann will transfer from Civil Court to Criminal Court hearing Juvenile cases. Judge Leslie-Ann M. Justus will remain in Family Court and take over Escandon’s calendar.
MMM called Lawson for comment on a New York Post story over the weekend that said Escandon would not be hearing divorce cases “after a months-long campaign by women who say he systematically cheated them from the bench.” Lawson said the Post story was a “rehash.” Escandon has not been hearing new divorces, rather, he has been presiding over non-matrimonial cases and post-Judgment matters in Family Court, since July.
Escandon’s July reassignment was caused by Judge Michael Guadagno’s elevation to the Appellate Court and these recent reassignments are the result of Bauman’s anticipated elevation to the Supreme Court, according to Lawson.
Lawson said that the Monmouth County Vicinage currently has six vacancies with a seventh coming if Bauman is confirmed a Supreme Court Associate Justice by the State Senate. There are four pending Judicial nominations for Monmouth County pending before the Senate.
Escandon’s tenure on the Family Court bench has been a subject of controversy since May when former Long Branch resident Rachel Alintoff complained to Governor Christie at at Town Hall Meeting in Garfield about Escandon’s rulings, one of which had been overturned on appeal, in her divorce case. Since then, a group of divorce litigants, mostly women, have been holding periodic protests about Escandon at the Monmouth County Court House and the Advisory Committee on Judicial Conduct has initiated an investigation into Escandon based upon Alintoff’s complaints.
Posted: December 24th, 2012 | Author: Art Gallagher | Filed under: Monmouth County, Monmouth County Court, NJ Courts, NJ Judiciary | Tags: Judge Honora O'Brien Kilgallen, Judge James J. McGann, Judge Lawrence M. Lawson, Judge Leslie-Ann M. Justus, Judge Linda Grasso -Jones, Judge Michael Guadagno, Judge Paul Escandon, Paul Escandon, Rachel Alintoff | 7 Comments »
Multiple divorce litigants with cases before Judge Paul X. Escandon have told MMM that they have been informed by Monmouth County Court personnel that Escandon will no longer be hearing their cases.
Judge Lawrence M. Lawson, the Assignment Judge of the Monmouth County Vicinage, confirmed the change in Escandon’s assignment.
Escandon will be hearing non-matrimonial cases, those of unmarried couples with children and/or property who need the Court’s involvement to resolve their differences and post-divorce cases that he currently has, according to Lawson. All family court judges will hear post divorce matters that are 12 months old or more.
Lawson said that the change is the result of his reassigning Judges to cope with the Court’s four vacancies and the temporary elevation of Judge Michael Guadagno to the Appeals Court.
A group of thirty women lead by former Long Branch resident Rachel Alintoff have been fighting get to Escandon recused from their cases and removed from the bench for several months due to what they say is a pattern of improper and illegal rulings regarding custody and support in favor of their wealthy estranged husbands. There complaints have ranged from revoking custody without a hearing to emanicipating a disabled teenager in order to void child support.
Alintoff brought her plight to Governor Chris Christie’s attention at a Town Hall meeting in Garfield on May 2. Since then the Advisory Committee on Judical Conduct has initiated an investigation into Escandon’s rulings based on Alintoff’s complaints and those of at least ten other women and one man.
Posted: July 24th, 2012 | Author: Art Gallagher | Filed under: Monmouth County, Monmouth County Court | Tags: Advisory Committee on Judicial Conduct, Divorce, Governor Chris Christie, Judge Lawrence M. Lawson, Judge Michael Guadagno, Judge Paul Escandon, Judge Paul X. Escandon, Rachel Alintoff | 38 Comments »
Photo credit: The Monmouth Journal
Judge Michael A. Guadagno, the presiding judge of the Monmouth County Court’s family division, has been elevated to the Appellate Division of the State Superior Court effective August 1, Chief Justice Stuart Rabner announced today.
Judge Guadangno is Lt. Governor Kim Guadagno’s husband.
The Appellate Division of the Superior Court is New Jersey’s intermediate appellate court. The 32 Appellate Division judges hear appeals from decisions of the trial courts, the Tax Court and state administrative agencies. The Appellate Division decides approximately 6,500 appeals and 7,500 motions each year.
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Posted: July 3rd, 2012 | Author: Art Gallagher | Filed under: Monmouth County Court, NJ Courts, NJ Judiciary | Tags: Appellate Court, Appellate Division of Superior Court, Chief Justice Stuart Rabner, Judge Michael Guadagno, Kim Guadagno, Monmouth County Court | 6 Comments »