Family Law Legislative Update 2015 - 02-03

Here is the latest.  Still no word on the proposed legislation to codify child custody decision making.

Four things have been added since the last update:

HB 220 is the Maryland Collaborative Reproduction Act, a familiar bill introduced in 2013 and 2014.

HB 224, 225, and 227 are all domestic violence bills.

HB 224 provides for a 2 year protective order.  The text of the bill has not yet been posted.  The short synopsis says "a period not to exceed 2 years by consent of the respondent under specified circumstances."  Unless the synopsis is simply wrong, it's hard to imagine why the bill does any good; it's nice to provide for a 2 year protective order but it seems to defeat the purpose if the respondent has to consent.  Maybe it has to do with a situation in which there is going to be a consent and the judge is allowed to take a 2 year consent rather than a shorter one.

HB 225 provides for "additional relief."  Again, the text is not yet posted and the synopsis says "expanding the relief that may be awarded" in interim, temporary, and final protective orders.  More to come when they post the text.

HB 227 alters the definition of abuse in DV cases "to include harassment, trespass, and malicious destruction of property under specified provisions of law if the person eligible for relief has not resided with the respondent for at least 7 days before the filing of the petition."  The text has not yet been posted.

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