Rhode Island Divorce: Speeding Up Your Divorce
Rhode Island Divorce Tip: A Checklist Helps

Rhode Island Divorce Tip: On Judicial Bias

Rhode Island Divorces are hard enough without judicial bias.  Judicial bias is when a judge or magistrate in the position to make a decision in your Rhode Island Divorce listens more to one parties' position than the other parties' position and gives that position unjust weight in the decision making process.

It happens.  It's no mystery.  Judges and magistrates are people.  They are not machines.  While they are set on the course of impartiality as part of their duty, you cannot strip the humanity out of them. 

Naturally, with that humanity comes all the personal experiences, thought processes, underlying suppositions, precepts and all the other things that go into the formation of the human person, including biases.

I don't envy Judge's and Magistrates.  They are supposed to remain detached from each situation and try to make consistent decisions from case to case.  Yet, how can they when they have their own belief systems and their own ideas about the way families should be have, visitation should be conducted, the child support system and more.

Judicial bias exists on a practical level on a daily basis.  In a Rhode Island Divorce  System comprised of human beings how could some bias NOT exist?  It just isn't reasonably possible.

Its when Judicial Bias overshadows a case to the extent that prejudice is caused to a a person's case. 

It occurs! In fact, there seem to be some warning signs that one could look for to gauge the level of bias.

Ask yourself this:

1)  Is the Judge or Magistrate for my divorce matter giving me equal time to speak as compared to the opposing party?

2)  Is the Judge or Magistrate for my divorce case allowing the opposing party to enter all his or her exhibits and shutting you down when you attempt to do the same thing?

3)  Does the judge's demeanor or tone change when he or she addresses you as compared to the other party?

4)  When liberties are given by the Judge, are they extended only to the other party and denied to you client?

5)  Does the Judge seem friendlier to the opposing attorney as opposed to your attorney or you?

Judicial Bias Exists!  You MUST be aware of it!  It is an inherent part of the system!  Some of the biases are small and others are large. 

So how can you protect yourself.  Know the Judges.  Ask around.  Learn about the judges.  Sit in court, watch and listen to each judge and how he or she handles cases.

Knowledge is the key.

Authored by:

Christopher A. Pearsall, Esquire
571 Pontiac Avenue
Cranston, RI  02910
Phone:  (401) 354-2369

NOTE:  The postings on this website are NOT legal advice, DO NOT create an attorney/client relationship and are NOT a substitute for a detailed consultation with an attorney experienced in the state where you have your legal issue.  This site is presented for the convenience of the internet public.

* The Rhode Island Supreme Court licenses all lawyers in the general practice of law and has no procedure for recognition of specialty in any area of law.