Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Artyom's Mom Must Pay Child Support

So reports the Miami Herald:
A judge in Tennessee has ruled that an American woman must pay child support for the adopted son she sent back to Russia.

Circuit Court Judge Lee Russell approved a motion on Wednesday for default judgment against Torry Hansen, who has repeatedly failed to appear in court and at depositions.

Hansen was living in Shelbyville in April 2010 when she sent the boy, then 7, to his native Russia on a plane.

A lawsuit filed by the adoption agency seeks child support and other damages that will be held in a trust for the child, who is now living in a group home in Russia.

The judge will hear arguments in May on how much money Hansen should pay.
So the judge didn't rule on the merits; a default judgment essentially takes as true everything in the plaintiff's petition.  I think a ruling on the merits would have reached the same conclusion, since a legal parent has a legal duty to support her child financially and sending Artyom back to Russia would not have terminated her parental rights and obligations.  Still, by her conduct that led to the default judgment, Hansen forfeited the opportunity to offer any legal defense.  Not that she had much to go on -- her conduct was indefensible.

1 comment:

Karen said...

She had it coming. She should not have abandoned him in such a way, regardless of her feeling it was justified.
Honestly, if she would have made him a ward of the court, she could have accomplished the same thing (for her needs) and not had to endure the child support issues. I sometimes really wonder why she didn't seek avenues open to her here, in the US. The very LEAST she could have done, was to get him into some kind of residential care if she thought he needed help.