FVAP April 2014 e-newsletter
It's been an incredibly busy and successful first quarter of 2014.

In this issue: 

  • FVAP achieves victories in court
  • FVAP's Case Publication Program a huge success
  • Save the dates for the events of the summer: Banding Together to End Domestic Violence, June 19 in San Francisco and July 8 in Los Angeles
  • Legal Director Nancy Lemon to be honored along with U.S. Senator Barbara Boxer
  • FVAP a proud co-sponsor of the National Family Justice Center Alliance conference

FVAP Achieves Victories in Court

After filing our first appeal in August 2012, our case pipeline is starting to yield results.  Three of our appeals have now resolved, and we are thrilled with our results of two wins and one loss.  With an average success rate of 21% for appeals in California, our success rate of 66% demonstrates the quality and importance of the appeals we bring.  Here are brief summaries of the three cases:

1.  In J.Q. v. T.B. (2014) 223 Cal.App.4th 687, the court ruled that spousal support can be awarded in a domestic violence (DV) action before a finding of DV has been made.  This will be very helpful to scores of DV survivors because it is common for restraining order matters to be continued pending criminal charges or to find an open date on the court’s calendar.  Without spousal support in the meantime, survivors can be forced to stay in shelters (if there are any available) or in unsafe locations. 

2.  In B.E. v. P.U. (2014) __ Cal.App.4th __, the court held that a survivor of DV can obtain renewal of a restraining order by showing a reasonable apprehension of any form of abuse, including non-physical abuse.  This case will result in increased clarity in the standard governing restraining order renewals and more trial courts applying the statute correctly.

3.  Unfortunately, it was not all good news.  In an unpublished decision, the Court of Appeal affirmed the trial court's order for a young girl to "reunify" with her father, whom the court found had sexually abused her.  While FVAP is disappointed in the ruling, we will not give up in our pursuit to find justice for survivors of abuse.

We have 8 more cases in the pipeline, so stay tuned for more results later this year.

FVAP Secures Publication of Three Appellate Decisions

In 2013, we told you that we launched our Case Publication Program, through which we request publication of appellate court decisions that are important to DV survivors.  Publication ensures that the cases are binding legal precedent on all trial courts in California.

In the first quarter of 2014, we successfully petitioned for publication of 3 appellate cases:
  • J.J. v. M.F. (2014) 223 Cal.App.4th 968 overturned the trial court’s grant of a mutual restraining order against the survivor of abuse because she was not a “primary aggressor” of abuse.
  • Burquet v. Brumbaugh (2014) 223 Cal.App.4th 1140 held that contacting an ex-girlfriend by phone, email, and text, and arriving at her residence unannounced and uninvited, and then refusing to leave and making a scene, constituted “disturbing the peace” under the Domestic Violence Prevention Act.
  • B.E. v. P.U. (2014) __ Cal.App.4th __, an FVAP appeal discussed above (which was originally unpublished), held that a survivor of DV can obtain renewal of a restraining order by showing a reasonable apprehension of any form of abuse, including non-physical abuse.
We are thrilled with the success of this program so far in expanding the body of case law to help survivors of DV and their children in court.

June 19 and July 8... Battle of the Bands events like no other

On Thursday June 19, at 6:00pm at 1015 Folsom in San Francisco (doors open at 5:30), 7 bands of lawyers will compete for pride, honor, and FVAP. 

Not to be outdone, a second Battle of the Bands will take place on Tuesday, July 8 at the Belasco Theater in Los Angeles, where 11 bands will battle on 2 stages.

Check it out at www.fvapbotb.comAll of the proceeds will go directly to helping FVAP take more cases, and we can guarantee that they will be nights to remember.  We have already raised 104,000 in event sponsorships, and ticket sales and pre-event voting will be coming soon.  You won't want to miss these amazing lineups:

San Francisco
  1. Google
  2. Jones Day (last year's reigning champion)
  3. Kirkland & Ellis
  4. Latham & Watkins
  5. Lieff, Cabraser, Heimann & Bernstein
  6. Morrison & Foerster
  7. Twitter/O'Melveny & Myers
Los Angeles:
  1. Band of Judges
  2. DLA Piper
  3. Gibson Dunn
  4. Latham & Watkins
  5. Morrison & Foerster
  6. Norton Rose Fullbright / Case Knossman
  7. O’Melveny & Myers
  8. Perkins Coie
  9. Proskauer Rose
  10. Qualcomm
  11. Reed Smith

Legal Director Nancy Lemon to Be Honored Along with U.S. Senator Barbara Boxer

On May 28, 2014, Legal Director Nancy Lemon will be honored with California Women's Law Center's Pursuit of Justice Award, along with U.S. Senator Barbara Boxer.  Let us know if you will be at the awards ceremony in Los Angeles, as we'd love to see you there.

FVAP could not be more proud of Nancy's lifetime achievements and this wonderful recognition.


FVAP a Co-Sponsor of the National Family Justice Center Alliance Conference

On April 2-4, 2014, DV advocates from across the country gathered in San Diego for the annual NFJCA conference, "The Root of All Crime."  The conference explored the intersections of all types of violence and discussed best practices in multi-disciplinary response to violence.  FVAP was proud to be a co-sponsor of this important event and was honored to present a session on California's domestic violence and custody laws, and the neuroscience and social science behind them.

We hope to see you at next year's conference, April 21-23, 2015 in San Diego.

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Family Violence Appellate Project, 2850 Telegraph Avenue, Suite 500, Berkeley, CA 94705
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