Multiple divorce litigants with cases before Judge Paul X. Escandon have told MMM that they have been informed by Monmouth County Court personnel that Escandon will no longer be hearing their cases.
Judge Lawrence M. Lawson, the Assignment Judge of the Monmouth County Vicinage, confirmed the change in Escandon’s assignment.
Escandon will be hearing non-matrimonial cases, those of unmarried couples with children and/or property who need the Court’s involvement to resolve their differences and post-divorce cases that he currently has, according to Lawson. All family court judges will hear post divorce matters that are 12 months old or more.
Lawson said that the change is the result of his reassigning Judges to cope with the Court’s four vacancies and the temporary elevation of Judge Michael Guadagno to the Appeals Court.
A group of thirty women lead by former Long Branch resident Rachel Alintoff have been fighting get to Escandon recused from their cases and removed from the bench for several months due to what they say is a pattern of improper and illegal rulings regarding custody and support in favor of their wealthy estranged husbands. There complaints have ranged from revoking custody without a hearing to emanicipating a disabled teenager in order to void child support.
Alintoff brought her plight to Governor Chris Christie’s attention at a Town Hall meeting in Garfield on May 2. Since then the Advisory Committee on Judical Conduct has initiated an investigation into Escandon’s rulings based on Alintoff’s complaints and those of at least ten other women and one man.