Assemblyman Sean Kean Weighs In On Judge Paul Escandon, Alimony and Child Support Reform

Assemblyman Sean Kean

Assemblyman Sean Kean says he and Judge Paul Escandon do not share a political agenda, that his proposed legislation to reform alimony and child support is not anti-women, and that he believes in the integrity, ethics and fairness of Escandon.

Kean was responding to Rachel Alintoff’s comment to Governor Chris Christie, “Judge Escandon is the former law partner of Assemblyman Sean Kean whose main platform is reducing Alimony for women. What will you do as Governor to make sure that Judges are kept from carrying out their own political agendas from the bench?”

“Alintoff has been having lots of people call my office about her case,” said Kean, “we tell them we are not familiar with the case and it would be inappropriate for a legislator to call a Judge about a case.”

Kean is the sponsor of two pieces of legislation regarding alimony and child support.  

A685, which is co-sponsored by Assemblyman Declan O’Scanlon.  The companion bill in the Senate, S1388 is sponsored by Democratic Senator Nicholas Scutari, Chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee and Republican Senator Gerald Cardinale.   The bill provides for modification of child support and certain alimony cases due to changed circumstances.  Kean says this bill makes the Lepis decision, a 1980 NJ Supreme Court decision that defined “change of circumstances” for alimony cases legislated law rather than case law. “This bill puts the current case law into legislation,” said Kean.

AJR36, Kean’s other proposed legislation, is an Assembly Joint Resolution, not a bill, that would create a “Blue Ribbon Commission” to study alimony reform.  The commission would include the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, or his designee, the Attorney General, or his designee, one member of the Senate appointed by the Senate President, one member of the Senate appointed by the Senate Minority Leader, one member of the General Assembly appointed by the Speaker of the General Assembly, one member of the General Assembly appointed by the Assembly Minority Leader, and five public members to be appointed by the Governor.  The public members appointed by the Governor shall include at least two persons licensed to practice law in the State with a specialization in marital law.  To the extent that it is possible, the commission shall consist of an equal number of male and female members.

The commission shall study all aspects of State alimony law and avenues of potential reform, including but not limited to:

     (1)   the scope of State alimony laws as compared with those in other states;

     (2)   Statewide trends in alimony awards, including an analysis of how those trends compare with alimony award trends in other states;

     (3)   whether current economic conditions have affected trends in State alimony awards; and

     (4)   any other such issues as the commission may identify as necessary to understanding and reforming State alimony law.

     b.    The commission shall propose new legislation, if it deems appropriate.

Kean said this resolution is not anti-woman, but about fairness to both men and woman who pay alimony. “More and more woman are paying alimony in this economy, but it is true that men still pay it more often.”

“The idea is to bring the standards for alimony more in line with the standards for child support where the law is clearer and Judges have less discretionary power.”

“I have never been through a divorce,” said Kean, “I don’t have a personal agenda here.  This resolution is the result of complaints from many constituents whose economic circumstances have changed; people who were making six figures on Wall Street when life time alimony was awarded, but are now collecting $600 in unemployment checks every two weeks.  These people are finding it difficult to get Judges to reconsider their cases when they are not able to pay.  The Blue Ribbon Commission would study the issue, which is two complex to decide in a two hour legislative committee hearing, and make appropriate recommendations based upon their findings.”

As for Escandon, Kean said he knows him to be fair minded, principled and ethical. “I signed off on his nomination to the court when I was in the Senate.  He was my law partner and my childhood friend. We played Little League Baseball together.”

“I feel terrible for him because as a sitting Judge he cannot defend himself publicly.  I don’t know the facts of the Alintoff case and I would not comment on the allegations, but I believe in Judge Escanlon.”


Posted: May 10th, 2012 | Author: | Filed under: Alimony and Child Support, Judicial Reform | Tags: , , , , , , , | 24 Comments »

24 Comments on “Assemblyman Sean Kean Weighs In On Judge Paul Escandon, Alimony and Child Support Reform”

  1. Judicial Change said at 12:22 pm on May 10th, 2012:

    Sean Kean – if you think that Judge Paul Escandon is “fair minded” that is an EXTRA reason to not pass your terrible Alimony Reform Bill. Will you still think your friend Judge Paul Escandon is “fair minded” when the Judiciary Committee finds that he has acted outside the law? The Appellate Court did not find him to be “fair minded” when they overturned his ruling that stripped a young mother of all her parental rights without a legal hearing. It is unbelievable that you are publicly supporting Judge Escandon when you say that you are unaware of his cases on the Family Court. Do you have any idea what he is doing to women? I suggest you do some research.

  2. Gerry said at 12:32 pm on May 10th, 2012:

    I don’t know Ms. Alintoff’s story, but if it’s anything like my sister has been going through in Escandon’s courtroom I understand her anger and frustration.

    Judge Escandon has seen fit to take my sister’s children away and award a very prolonged temporary custody (the permanent custody decision has been postponed numerous times over the past 5 months)to her ex-husband who is a two time violent felon. I’m not making this up.

    My ex-brother in law, the felon, has been crippling my sister financially in Escandon’s courtroom for the past 3 years with one baseless motion after another, and Escandon not only allows it, but rewards it.

    My sister was ordered to remain in her house even though Escandon wasn’t enforcing alimony and child support payments, thereby making it impossible for her to pay the mortgage and the bills. Then when she finally had to sell the house, he took her children away because she left Marlboro to move 30 minutes away in the same state.

    Bravo to Ms. Alintoff for exposing this disgraceful “family” court judge. An airing out of his suspect courtroom is way overdo. I offer any help I can give to Ms. Alintoff in the hope that we can finally rid the Monmouth County Family Court of this apparent crusader for father’s rights, regardless of the extremely criminal and violent past of the father.

  3. brian said at 1:29 pm on May 10th, 2012:

    l can tell Kean is lying—-his lips are moving.

  4. Adam said at 2:51 pm on May 10th, 2012:

    It’s mind boggling that Sean Kean says that he knows nothing about the case, but supports Judge Escandon. It must be nice to never have to learn the facts of an issue before deciding who to back.

    It’s also amazing that Assemblyman Kean says “I feel terrible for him…” when referring to his childhood friend, Escandon. Nothing is happening to Judge Escandon other than a little sunlight is shining on the way he conducts himself. How about a little compassion for the woman and children who are being subjected to this soon to be disgraced Judge’s vendetta against woman.

    How out of touch is Assemblyman Sean Kean?

  5. A long-time NJ resident (male) said at 7:19 pm on May 10th, 2012:

    Not really sure where to start with Assemblyman Kean. Is this the main platform he is trying to make a political career on? Reducing alimony and child support to protect men on Wall Street? Are you kidding me……this must be a joke. He will alienate all the women in NJ and any man that has a heart/brain. I know some guys that have tried to defer their large Wall Street bonuses to give the appearance they are not making any money while going through a divorce.

    Assemblyman Kean, you are suppose to be a public servant so how about you get involved here and review the case?

    Is it a coincidence that you were childhood friends and law partners, and now both of you are trying the change alimony and child support laws (you through the legislature and the judge via the bench – although it is not even a law)? Or is there something else going on here that should raise a flag. What is the judge getting to improperly enforce this agenda and who is influencing him?

    I hope the media (Star-Ledger, APP, NYT, and WSJ) does some more digging because something smells bad here. At a minimum there appears to be a judge that is not following the current law and at worst there appears to be other improprieties.

  6. Name (required) said at 2:17 pm on May 11th, 2012:

    Sean Kean – Shame on you. Judge Escandon was your Little League teammate and therefore is fair-minded? Your definition of fair-mindedness sounds offbase. Clearly, in the case of Rachel Alintoff, Escandon is NOT taking into consideration Alintoff’s $500k salary. What is he taking into consideration? Finally, Escandon can’t defend himself? What a crock! On the contrary, he appears to be quite untouchable! You better get it straight, sir.

    Paul Escandon – How about Gerry’s comments above? I’m aware of the details and Gerry speaks the truth. How could you place custody in the hands of a violent man solely because the female victim was FORCED TO MOVE (because her ex was not paying child support and alimony) to earn a living for her and her children? You should do our judicial system a favor and step down. We will not stop until justice, in its pure sense, is served.

  7. Warren Lapp said at 9:11 pm on May 11th, 2012:

    Clearly nobody read the article before commenting. If you have known someone for 40 years to be a fair and just person why can’t you say that if asked? He never said that he read the case notes and from that decided that Judge Escandon was fair. As for the reference to Wall Street… there are others that work on Main Street in “common” jobs that fall on hard times and need to change their alimony and child support to reflect the change in a timely manner. My personal experience adjusting child support was very lengthy and expensive (not to mention very paper intensive). I am convinced that the State makes it difficult in an attempt to discourage the payer of support from taking that path. I for one APPLAUD Mr. Kean for doing what he was elected to do and representing all the people, no matter how potentially unpopular it may seem. Doing nothing is not his job! Too many politicians seem to make a career of dodging tough issues.

  8. BigCat said at 9:44 pm on May 11th, 2012:

    Warren – your point is well taken but I know many guys that have tried to hide and defer compensation in order to reduce their initial alimony/child support payments, especially Wall Street men. I believe Ms Alintoff’s case is about getting what she rightfully deserves (her initial alimony) based upon what her husband was/is earning and not allowing him to sandbag his compensation in order to pay less, as well as obtaining her property which is being withheld from her. And of course not forget about her child being taken away from her by this Judge. I believe there is something going on between the judge and Sean Kean…..too many coicendences (their friendship, law partners and now both trying to push through new alimony rights ………

  9. Paying lots said at 3:12 pm on May 12th, 2012:

    Let’s not forget the MANY ladies that get alimony and then live with their boyfriends for years and years just to keep soaking the ex. I personally know two instances of this and the women are very open about what they are doing and one even brags about it to the very daughter she had with her ex. She called it her “job” and justified not working because she was bringing cash into the household regardless. Just like the President can “evolve” so to must the laws regarding alimony and child support. Go get ’em Sean!

  10. LPL said at 4:28 pm on May 12th, 2012:

    Sean – Don’t feel so bad for your buddy. He may not be able to outwardly defend himself against his own victims, but he is able to order a hearing on a recusal motion whereby opposing council argues for him. Opposing council charges their client and further diminishes the marital assets. This all to defend the judge free of charge to him. Truth be told the judge should compensate the victims of his faulty opinions from the bench causing excessive legal bills.

    “It is confidence in the men and women who administer the judicial system that is the true backbone of the rule of law.” Justice Stevens

    Kean and Escandon should be ashamed of themselves.

  11. Concerned said at 8:18 am on May 14th, 2012:

    In reading this string of comments, I am deeply concerned at what appears to be a pattern of behavior from Judge Escandon. Given their past, the fact that this Assembyman and Judge have symmetrical imperatives should be cause for pause. When there is a lack of due process and fairness in the courtroom, why shouldn’t there be some level concern from our elected officials that perhaps this warrants a further look? What is Mr. Kean afraid of?

  12. Name (required) said at 8:36 am on May 14th, 2012:

    Paying Lots – there is a problem when a judge summarily makes decisions without due process. He’s been known to decide on motions without giving the defendant an opportunity to weigh in. It is not his job to right a wrong against an entire gender. How are his actions different from vigilantism?

  13. Name (required) said at 7:37 am on May 15th, 2012:

    Save face, Kean. Your buddy is putting children in danger, victimizing women and rewarding abusive men. He will soon be publicly disgraced.

  14. Legal Beagle said at 7:32 am on May 16th, 2012:

    So we hear one side of the story a determine this is a bad judge? I understand there is an investigation. Let’s wait and see the reults of that before we continue a lynching by blog.

  15. Schwartz said at 8:34 pm on May 16th, 2012:

    I am writing this letter to express my concerns about the alimony reforms being championed by Assemblyman Sean Kean and others. Reform, when carried out responsibly and with an honest desire to correct inequities, is beneficial.
    Unfortunately, in this case, the true nature
    of the agenda Assemblyman Kean, and Judge Paul Escandon have in mind is being
    hidden by them. Their goal is not
    a fairer, better balanced, system. Their
    true intentions are being demonstrated by Judge Escandon’s rulings. He and Assemblyman Kean were law partners and
    share the same objective concerning alimony reform.
    If you believe that actions speak louder than words, you should inquire as to how Judge Escandon is applying the principles of the alimony reform he and the others are espousing.
    He has systematically deprived women of due process and essentially victimized them and their children in the name of reform. I know some details of 3 cases, but there are
    more. One woman was forced to sell her
    home and had her children taken away from her without the required hearing. Another woman will have to declare bankruptcy and my daughter has been given $1,157 a month (below the federal poverty level) to live on when her husband earns on average $500,000 a year on Wall Street. Coming to the bench with an overriding political agenda is a corruption of the judicial process. The application of a law or guidelines is at least as important as what is written.
    Alimony reform, if needed, must be done with checks and balances so that
    it is not used as an excuse to impoverish women and their children in order to
    favor their richer, more influential husbands.
    If you want to know the true nature of the danger if alimony reform is not carried out very carefully, please inform yourself about Judge Escandon’s rulings. He is the “poster
    judge” for what can go wrong with alimony reform.
    I am not saying that every judge will abuse the reforms, but
    unless safeguards are put in place, abuse will occur.
    If this reform is not done correctly I believe that voters, particularly women voters, should be made aware of who is promoting irresponsible reform, and who is voting for it.

    I will certainly do what I can to inform as many voters as possible.

  16. Ashlen said at 7:33 pm on May 23rd, 2012:

    I do not have to deal with this judge but a family member is and all I can say is that Escandon has over and over sided with the male who happens to be an abuser of liquor, drugs, and narcotics . Not only did my family member provide proof of this there are numerous arrest records to back her up, not to mention the failed drug tests, from making her stay in a home with him for over 6 months, when he finally got around to making a decision allowing her to move out of the home while going through the divorce, to not having him pay any child support while she must continue to provide health care coverage for him. It’s now going into year two with nothing resolved and not one cent has been paid to her in child support or alimony. The sad fact is she did not even ask for alimony just wanted a fair child support amount and no over night stays until he completed a rehab evaluation on his drinking..It took two arrests and lock up in county jail for Escandon to make a ruling on visitation in her favor. She is going broke and she is still married every time a decision has to be made a motion is put forward and Escandon grants it even though the reasons for the motions contradict each other. We are all pushing for her to take this higher than Escandon because from what I gather and now doing research on Escandon, this man has to be stopped. The more I read about him the more I worry for her and her son’s well being because the court is failing her and in a case that should be cut and dry.. I cringe when I think about other cases that are not so. SOMETHING NEEDS TO BE DONE!

  17. Scared said at 10:31 pm on May 23rd, 2012:

    I am familiar with a case which is currently before Judge Escandon. I can say it has been nothing less than a nightmare since day one. I do believe that Judge Escandon’s orders, lack of enforcement of his own orders, lack of enforcement of pendente lite support, allowance of ex parte communication, and some of the manners by which he has handled the case have victimized this woman in a way similar to the way she was victimized married. She has been in the “system” for a long time attempting to care for her children and love them as best as she can during this very difficult time but the unfairness in the judicial system has made it more difficult. Her husband was allowed to take marital monies and not account for them. He was even allowed to pay his own attorney with marital monies he took and was supposed to disclose. The woman had to use family money to hire an attorney and pay a retainer but when her husband dragged the divorce on and withheld her youngest son and did not cooperate with parenting time, she was forced to use her attorney as more of a parenting coordinator which ran the retainer dry. Before long there was no money left. Support was ordered but went unpaid. Finally wage garnishment was ordered but was not effectively enforced because her husband is self-employed but lied to Judge Escandon. Proof of his self-employment went ignored. Her husband was not forced to adhere to court rules or in the production of documents. She has been living with family for some time with her children after having to leave her house for financial reasons. She has been left without an attorney for financial reasons, but hangs on each day by a string for the love of her children. I have watched her go through the struggle married to a man who controlled financials and everything in her life and now the system allows her husband to continue to not disclose financials and control. Now she was told this week in the Monmouth County Court System that living with me for this length of time has hurt her. Here is what I say to Judge Escandon. . . did you see this woman chased with a video camera? Were you there when a mannequin was placed in her garage dressed in her husbands clothing? Were you there when someone came to her door with a baseball bat looking for her husband? Were you there when she received death threats to cut her throat out in front of her children? Were you there when false police reports were filed against her and she lay with her children shaking in the middle of the night? Were you there when her husband hid her son in his new lovers house and refused to return him? Were you there all of the times she had to call the police because her son was never returned? So of course this woman’s choice has been to live where she feels safe and where she can currently afford. We now fear that Judge Escandon will take her children from her because she lives with family at the current time and does not have a place of her own. There was never a single day that I would believe that these children could be taken from this woman as she was home with her children while her husband galavanted having an alter life that does not conform to the life of these children . . . she was the one doing homework, taking care of discipline, managing activities, but now anything goes. There appears to be no rights for mothers and no sanctity for family values. I think what Judge Escandon needs to realize is that many men are hiding money right before his eyes in his Courtroom. You can’t tell me he has no idea. Women are being victimized. Families are being victimized. Children are being affected. This woman now has no attorney. She has been left defenseless. Now she has to go to trial with no time to prepare as Judge Escandon ordered a trial date, no production of documents by her husband because it was not enforced by Judge Escandon, and without an attorney because Judge Escandon allowed her attorney to be relieved despite the fact that my daughter never received a bill and was near the end and filed a pleading to not relieve her as it would be devastating so close to the end. This woman made one last plea to Judge Escandon to get documents produced by her husband and he did grant her motion, but it took him six weeks to grant her motion and he now is unwilling to enforce the order without a “motion” but will not hear any more motions in regard to her case. Basically, he put her between a rock and a hard place with no chance of fighting her own case. Next, Judge Escandon will probably take the children because slowly but surely in this process she has been stripped of everything including any rights, disclosures, or fairness. If something is not done soon, more families will be destroyed. Emotional, mental, controlling abusers are continually able to abuse in this system. (Have lots more to say on this issue so will post again.)

  18. Fighting back said at 8:23 am on May 26th, 2012:

    Ashlen and Scared,

    You and your family members must file complaints with the Advisory Committee on Judicial Conduct, the Office of the Governor, Attorney General, Monmouth County Family Court and your elected representatives. We cannot tolerate this abuse of power by Judge Escandon and should seek impeachment.

  19. Rachel Alintoff said at 1:10 pm on June 24th, 2012:

    Sean Kean, do you still “believe” in Judge Escandon?
    Do you also “believe” in the tooth fairy?
    How many women have to come forward before you rethink your blind support of such an unethical judge?

  20. LPL said at 5:34 pm on June 24th, 2012:

    Check out the NY Post Article on this Story:


  21. kristen williams said at 10:35 pm on June 27th, 2012:

    My Name is Kristen Williams, I too am a victim with this Judge. My ex was not a wall street man nor did he make more than 90,00 a year. However Judge Paul Escandon had made a ruling regarding past child support and medical bills that were never proven. They were simple false if he had had us in for oral argument. Instead he ordered me to pay 3,500 dollars in a 30 day and he allowed a 17 year old to be emancipated. After 30 days he signed a bench warrent for my arrest. It gets worse. All I can say is that NOW the truth will come out from me. This Judge is corrupted.

  22. Shut your pie hole Rachel said at 1:31 pm on July 21st, 2012:

    It should be very clear to everyone that Alintoff just wants to keep the gravy train going and has deluded herself into thinking she’s a victim. I assure you she is not. She seems to have great typing skills (go get a job), great acting skills (you’re just bitter, not a victim), and is without any shame that she will smear a good man’s name to satisfy her own ego (sounds like you belong on Wall Street). Alintoff is a phony.

  23. Shut your... said at 1:23 am on July 24th, 2012:

    Have you read the names and the accounts? It is not just Rachel who has experienced the bias and illegal rulings of Judge Escandon. His decisions are causing harm to families and detriment to children.

  24. Alitnoff should be in jail said at 2:41 pm on July 28th, 2012:

    Not only is she a criminal who ought to be prosecuted, her intentional lies have opened her up to a civil slander suit. This spoiled rotten fame-whore is nothing but a lazy, alimony crazed, bitter crybaby. Of course let’s not blame her for terrible choices in husband’s or attorney’s. Instead, let’s terrorize Judge Escandon and every judge who stands up to her internet-smear campaign. At the end of the day the FBI will be arresting her and her small band of crony terrorists.