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Jurisdication, DV issues, and unproperly served with court papers

Portland, OR |

I am in the middle of a divorce (temporary orders), due to DV issues and my ex being in jail for a DV death threat felony charge, I had to move out of state and got clearance from the court. There is currently a protection order in place and emergency jurisdication was taken over in the state (OR) that I am now residing with our son. Since the divorce was originally filed in another state (WA), my ex's attorney is telling me that regardless of the protection order in place here protecting our son and emergency grounds, that the state the divorce was originally filed in continues to excersise jurisdication. Another issue is that I was not served with court papers and a judgement for visitation was issued without my presence in WA. I am not represented by a lawyer. Please any help or advise

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Attorney answers 3


We cannot help you on here. You need to consult with an attorney in person. It is impossible to determine which state has jurisdiction for what purposes. The facts you have presented are incomplete and very confusing.

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It's not clear from the question just how "emergency jurisdiction was taken" in this case. You need to consult with an attorney - preferably one who can practice in both Oregon and Washington - to sort this out. Being unrepresented in a divorce case, especially one with multi-state jurisdictional problems and domestic violence issues, is incredibly risky. It's like performing surgery on yourself, without any medical training or tools - legal, but you're likely to hurt yourself. I'm afraid this board can't be an adequate substitute for that.

Please read the following notice: <br> <br> Jay Bodzin is licensed to practice law in the State of Oregon and the Federal District of Oregon, and cannot give advice about the laws of other jurisdictions. All comments on this site are intended for informational purposes only, and do not constitute legal advice or create an attorney-client relationship. No posts or comments on this site are in any way confidential. Each case is unique. You are advised to have counsel at all stages of any legal proceeding, and to speak with your own lawyer in private to get advice about your specific situation. <br> <br> Jay Bodzin, Northwest Law Office, 2075 SW First Avenue, Suite 2J, Portland, OR 97201 | Telephone: 503-227-0965 | Facsimile: 503-345-0926 | Email: | Online:



Mr. Bodzin, Are you licensed in Oregon and Washington? Or can you recommend someone that is? Emergency jurisdiction was taken in Oregon becaus e my ex found out where my son and I fled after he was released from jail. He found out our son was attending school in Oregon and the school called me. This was a highly publized case as my ex was a cop at the time of arrest. I petitioned the court in Oregon for a protection order against my ex not to have contact with our son. Oregon granted the Order, took over emergency jurisdiction and notice was sent to my ex. He appeared in Oregon to fight the order but the judge denied his request and kept the protection order in place. Very confusing but limited space here to explain

Jay Bodzin

Jay Bodzin


You shouldn't explain the case here anyway. This is not a private forum. Anything you say here could be seen by anyone, including your opposing party. For that reason, it's important to keep questions here vague and hypothetical (which, of course, limits the usefulness of advice you can get here; but that's a paradox that can't be resolved as long as it's going to be open and free). I am personally licensed to practice in Oregon, but not Washington. I can't think of any individuals who practice in both states, but many firms have attorneys in both states - Gevurtz Menashe, for instance.


As others have indicated, the language of your question makes it hard to understand exactly what happened. You should show the papers you have to an attorney in the county in which the case is being heard.

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