Judges Opinions Public Notices, — April 28, 2021 8:17 — 0 Comments

Public Notices, April 28, 2021

Volume 58, No. 39

 

PUBLIC NOTICES

DECEDENTS’ ESTATES

RULE TO SHOW CAUSE

FICTITIOUS NAME

ARTICLES OF INCORPORATION

ORPHANS’ COURT DIVISION NOTICES

 

TABLE OF CONTENTS

Nicole A. (Horn) Anspach v. Eric J. Horn

 

NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN that Letters Testamentary or of Administration have been granted in the following estates. All persons indebted to the said estate are required to make payment, and those having claims or demands to present the same without delay to the administrators or executors named.

 

FIRST PUBLICATION

 

ESTATE OF CHARLES J. HEBERLING, late of Myerstown Borough, Lebanon County, Pennsylvania, deceased. Letters Testamentary have been granted to the undersigned Executor.

 

David C. Heberling, Executor

148 Twin Lakes Drive

Gettysburg, PA 17325

 

Kenneth C. Sandoe, Esquire

Steiner & Sandoe, Attorneys

36 West Main Avenue,

Myerstown, PA 17067

 

ESTATE OF ALLEN W. SATTAZAHN, late of North Lebanon Township, Lebanon County, Pennsylvania, deceased. Letters Testamentary have been granted to the undersigned Executrix.

Sharon M. Shepler, Executrix

596 N. 16th Street

Lebanon, PA 17046

 

David R. Warner Jr., Esquire

Buzgon Davis Law Offices

525 South Eighth Street

Lebanon, PA 17042

 

ESTATE OF THERESA I. STEFFY A/K/A TERESA I. STEFFY, late of Heidelberg Township, Lebanon County, Pennsylvania, deceased. Letters Testamentary have been granted to the undersigned Executrix.

Julie A. Alice, Executrix

320 Essex Lane

New Lenox, IL 60451

 

Kenneth C. Sandoe, Esquire

Steiner & Sandoe, Attorneys

36 West Main Avenue,

Myerstown, PA 17067

 

ESTATE OF HELEN M. KEGERREIS, late of West Cornwall Township, Lebanon County, deceased. Letters Testamentary have been granted to the undersigned Executrix.

Fannie Sue Martin, Executrix

 

Kevin M. Richards, Esquire

P.O. Box 1140

Lebanon, PA 17042-1140

 

ESTATE OF MARVIN W. STOUDT, late of the City of Lebanon, Lebanon County, deceased. Letters Testamentary have been granted to the undersigned Executor.

David C. Shoemaker, Executor

 

Kevin M. Richards, Esquire

P.O. Box 1140

Lebanon, PA 17042-1140

 

ESTATE OF CORY L. GRACELY, late of North Lebanon Township, Lebanon County, Pennsylvania, deceased. Letters of Administration have been granted to the undersigned Administratrix.

Taylor L. Gracely, Administratrix

 

Kevin M. Richards, Esquire

P.O. Box 1140

Lebanon, PA 17042-1140

 

ESTATE OF HARRY M. EBERLY, late of Annville Township, Lebanon County, deceased. Letters Testamentary have been granted to the undersigned Executor.

Douglas M. Eberly, Executor

451 Sylvan Street

Marysville, PA 17053

 

Jeffrey J. Crossland, Esquire

129 Market Street

P.O. Box 352

Lewisburg, PA 17837

 

SECOND PUBLICATION

 

ESTATE OF ALBERT M. WEAVER, late of the City of Lebanon, Lebanon County, Pennsylvania, deceased. Letters Testamentary have been granted to the undersigned Executrix.

Sharon L. Weaver, Executrix

55 Pineapple Road

Myerstown, PA 17067

 

Kenneth C. Sandoe, Esquire

Steiner & Sandoe, Attorneys

36 West Main Avenue,

Myerstown, PA 17067

 

ESTATE OF ELLEN G. GOODYEAR, late of Jackson Township, Lebanon County, Pennsylvania, deceased. Letters Testamentary have been granted to the undersigned Co-Executors.

Duane M. Goodyear, Executor

312 Hill Street

Bainbridge, PA 17502

 

Audrey E. Stoudt, Executor

700 South College Street

Myerstown, PA 17067

 

Timothy T. Engler, Esquire

Steiner & Sandoe, Attorneys

36 West Main Avenue,

Myerstown, PA 17067

 

ESTATE OF HARVEY L. INGRAM, late of Millcreek Township, Lebanon County, Pennsylvania, deceased. Letters Testamentary have been granted to the undersigned Executrix.

Anita K. Weidman, Executrix

129 Richland Road

Myerstown, PA 17067

 

Kenneth C. Sandoe, Esquire

Steiner & Sandoe, Attorneys

36 West Main Avenue,

Myerstown, PA 17067

 

ESTATE OF GUY R. FESSLER, JR., late of Union Township, Lebanon County, Pennsylvania, deceased. Letters of Administration have been granted to the undersigned Administratrix.

Vickie Lee Hocker, Administratrix

 

Kevin M. Dugan, Esquire

Feather and Feather, P.C.

22 West Main Street

Annville, PA 17003

 

ESTATE OF VIOLA H. KLINE, late of the City of Lebanon, Lebanon County, Pennsylvania, deceased. Letters Testamentary have been granted to the undersigned Executor.

Michael Shay Kline, Executor

605 E. Mifflin Street

Lebanon, PA 17046

 

Edward Coyle, Esquire

Buzgon Davis Law Offices

525 South Eighth Street

Lebanon, PA 17042

 

ESTATE OF HOWARD G. HECKMAN A/K/A HOWARD GEORGE HECKMAN, late of Millcreek Township, Lebanon County, Pennsylvania, deceased. Letters Testamentary have been granted to the undersigned Executrix.

Elaine E. Heckman, Executrix

216 S. Sheridan Rd.

Newmanstown, PA 17073

 

Timothy T. Engler, Esquire

Steiner & Sandoe, Attorneys

36 West Main Avenue

Myerstown, PA 17067

 

ESTATE OF CYNTHIA LEE FREY A/K/A CYNTHIA L. FREY, late of Lebanon County, Pennsylvania, deceased. Letters of Administration have been granted to the undersigned Administrator.

Adrienne P. Zuercher, Administrator

 

Lindsay M. Schoeneberger, Esquire

Russell, Krafft & Gruber, LLP

930 Red Rose Court, Suite 300

Lancaster, PA 17601

 

THIRD PUBLICATION

 

ESTATE OF MARY JANE KLICK, late of Myerstown Borough, Lebanon County, Pennsylvania, deceased. Letters Testamentary have been granted to the undersigned Executor.

Michael W. Klick, Executor

5 Georgie Lane

Richland, PA 17087

 

Jason J. Schibinger, Esquire

Buzgon Davis Law Offices

P.O. Box 49

525 South Eighth Street

Lebanon, PA 17042

 

ESTATE OF GENE B. MATTERNESS, late of Lebanon County, Pennsylvania, deceased. Letters Testamentary have been granted to the undersigned Executrix.

Amy B. Anderson, Executrix

27 Bethpage Drive

Mechanicsburg, PA 17050

 

Paul W. Kilgore, Esquire

Spitler, Kilgore & Enck, PC

522 South 8th Street

Lebanon, PA 17042

 

ESTATE OF FRANKLIN A. MARTRANO A/K/A FRANKLIN ANTHONY MARTRANO, late of Palmyra Borough, Lebanon County, Pennsylvania, deceased. Letters Testamentary have been granted to the undersigned Executor.

Dreama Miller, Executor

420 W. Cedar St.

Palmyra, PA 17078

 

Scott L Grenoble, Esquire

Buzgon Davis Law Offices

P.O. Box 49

525 South Eighth Street

Lebanon, PA 17042

 

ESTATE OF EULALA T. STINGER, late of Cornwall Borough, Lebanon County, Pennsylvania, deceased. Letters Testamentary have been granted to the undersigned Executor.

Leonard Crowther, Executor

 

  1. Charles Benner, Esquire

200 East Main Street

Leola, PA 17540

 

ESTATE OF LOUISE M. WILLEMAN, late of the City of Lebanon, Lebanon County, Pennsylvania, deceased. Letters of Administration have been granted to the undersigned Administrator.

Michael H. Willeman, Administrator

 

Kevin M. Richards, Esquire

P.O. Box 1140

Lebanon, PA 17042-1140

 

ESTATE OF NANCY G. POUST, late of Cornwall Borough, Lebanon County, Pennsylvania, deceased. Letters Testamentary have been granted to the undersigned Executrix.

Judith P. Heckard, Executrix

 

Kevin M. Richards, Esquire

P.O. Box 1140

Lebanon, PA 17042-1140

 

ESTATE OF ERNESTINE E. HOUSER, late of South Lebanon Township, Lebanon County, Pennsylvania, deceased. Letters Testamentary have been granted to the undersigned Co-Executors.

Elaine E. Gibble, Executrix

Edwin E. Houser, Executor

 

Kevin M. Richards, Esquire

P.O. Box 1140

Lebanon, PA 17042-1140

 

ESTATE OF RICHARD R. KRUMBINE, late of South Lebanon Township, Lebanon County, Pennsylvania, deceased. Letters Testamentary have been granted to the undersigned Executrix.

Polly A. Krumbine, Executrix

 

Kevin M. Richards, Esquire

P.O. Box 1140

Lebanon, PA 17042-1140

 

ESTATE OF HELENE M. EISENHAUER, late of Annville Township, Lebanon County, Pennsylvania, deceased. Letters Testamentary have been granted to the undersigned Executrix.

Jane L. Kaylor, Executrix

 

Kevin D. Dolan, Esquire

Nikolaus & Hohenadel, LLP

222 S. Market Street, Suite 201

Elizabethtown, PA 17022

 

 

RULE TO SHOW CAUSE

 

QUENTIN RIDING CLUB NOTICE

 

AND NOW, to wit, this 1 st day of April, 2021, a RULE is hereby issued to SHOW CAUSE, why the relief requested in said Petition should not be granted including, but not limited to, the approval of accounting, set forth in the Petition, partial distribution of proceeds, and approval of a reserve to be set aside for any pending and/or future claims.

 

This Rule shall be published in the Lebanon County Legal Journal and the Lebanon Daily News. Rule Returnable shall be filed within thirty (30) days of this publication.

 

BY THE COURT:

John C. Tylwalk P.J.

 

Copy of Petition with Accounting and proposed distribution to members can be viewed and/or copied at the Prothonotary’s Office in the Lebanon County Court house, 400 South 8th Street, Lebanon, Pennsylvania.

 

Kenneth C. Sandoe, Esquire

Steiner & Sandoe, Attorneys

36 West Main Avenue,

Myerstown, PA 17067

 

 

 

FICTITIOUS NAME

 

NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN that an application for registration of a fictitious name, Malamute Hauling, for the conduct of business in Lebanon County, Pennsylvania, with the principal place of business being 119 Bradley Road, Annville, PA 17003 was made to the Department of State of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania at Harrisburg, Pennsylvania on the 23rd day of April, 2021 pursuant to the Act of Assembly of December 16, 1982, Act 295.

 

The name and address of the only person or persons owning or interested in the said business are: Judith A. Endy, 119 Bradley Road, Annville, Pennsylvania 17003 and Steven D. Jones, 119 Bradley Road, Annville, Pennsylvania 17003.

 

Joshua D. Bonn., Esquire

Nauman, Smith, Shissler & Hall, LLP

200 North Third Street, 18th Floor

Harrisburg, PA 17101

(717) 236-3010

 

 

 

 

ARTICLES OF INCORPORATION

 

NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN that Articles of Incorporation were filed with the Department of State at Harrisburg, Pennsylvania on March 23, 1977, with an effective date of March 23, 1977, incorporating KLICK-LEWIS LEASING, INC., as a business corporation under the provisions of the Business Corporation Law of 1933, as amended.

 

Michelle R. Calvert, Esquire

REILLY WOLFSON

1601 Cornwall Road

Lebanon, PA 17042

 

NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN that Articles of Incorporation were filed with the Department of State at Harrisburg, Pennsylvania on April 1, 2021, with an effective date of April 1, 2021, incorporating KLICK LEWIS CAR WASH, INC., as a business corporation under the provisions of the Business Corporation Law of 1988.

 

Michelle R. Calvert, Esquire

REILLY WOLFSON

1601 Cornwall Road

Lebanon, PA 17042

 

 

 

ORPHANS’ COURT DIVISION NOTICES

 

Court of Common Pleas of Lebanon County

 

Notice is hereby given that the following accounts in decedents estates, Guardianships and trusts

have been filed in the Office of the Register of Wills and Clerk of Orphans’ Court of Lebanon

County, and that the same will be presented to the Court of Common Pleas-Orphans’ Court

Division of said County for Confirmation NISI on

 

Monday, May 3, 2021

At 10:00 A.M.

in Courtroom No. 1, Municipal Building, City of Lebanon

 

FIRST AND FINAL ACCOUNTS WITH PROPOSED SCHEDULE OF DISTRIBUTION

FILED BY EXECUTORS OR ADMINISTRATORS

 

  1. Heck, Dennis E., dec’d., Kyle C. Heck & Kevin E. Heck, Admrs., Colleen S. Gallo,

Atty.

 

All of the aforesaid accounts and statements of Proposed Distribution will be confirmed

ABSOLUTELY as of course by the said Orphans’ Court except those to which exemptions are

filed within twenty (20) days after the same are confirmed NISI.

Brian Craig

REGISTER OF WILLS AND CLERK OF ORPHANS’ COURT

LEBANON COUNTY, PENNSYLVANIA

 

 

 

JUDGES OPINION

 

Nicole A. (Horn) Anspach v. Eric J. Horn

 

Civil Action-Family Law-Child Support-Failure to Appear-Hospitalization-Independent Documentary Proof

 

Plaintiff (“Mother”), who failed to appear for the hearing scheduled on Defendant’s (“Father’s”) Petition for Modification of a support Order regarding the parties’ two (2) minor children, filed Exceptions to the Order adopting the Report and Recommendation of the Domestic Relations Master that dismissed the Complaint for support and terminated the support Order entered.  Mother asserts in her Exceptions that she was unable to appear at the hearing scheduled regarding the Petition for Modification because she had been hospitalized.

 

  1. Support litigants have a duty to participate in the child support process.

 

  1. The child support system cannot afford to permit parties to show up or not to show up at their whim or convenience.

 

  1. When a support litigant fails to appear, it becomes his or her burden to explain that non-appearance.

 

  1. In deciding whether to afford a non-appearing parent with another chance to appear for a support hearing, the Court must consider the following factors: (1) whether the non-appearing parent provided independent proof of his or her excuse for failing to appear; (2) whether the non-appearing parent has a history of noncooperation; and (3) the efforts made by the non-appearing parent to notify the Court of the inability to appear.

 

  1. While Mother failed to contact the Domestic Relations Office to explain her failure to appear and first claimed she had been hospitalized at the time of the hearing in Exceptions filed twelve (12) days after the hearing, there is no history of non-cooperation on the part of Mother.

 

  1. Mother will be afforded another chance for a hearing in the event that she provides independent documentary proof of her hospitalization that prevented her attendance at the hearing within two (2) weeks with the Order of dismissing her support Complaint to be affirmed in the event that she fails to provide independent documentary corroboration of her hospitalization as directed.

 

L.C.C.C.P. No. 2013-50879, Opinion by Bradford H. Charles, Judge, March 19, 2020.

 

 

 

IN THE COURT OF COMMON PLEAS LEBANON COUNTY

PENNSYLVANIA

 

CIVIL ACTION – FAMILY DIVISION

 

 

          NICOLE A. (Horn) ANSPACH  :         NO. 2013-5-0879

Plaintiff                                           :         PACSES NO. 088114336

:

  1. :

ERIC J. HORN                                   :

Defendant                                         :

:

:        CHILD SUPPORT

ORDER OF COURT

 

 

 

AND NOW, this 19th day of March, 2020 upon consideration of the exceptions filed by Nicole A. (Horn) Anspach (hereafter MOTHER), and in accordance with the attached Opinion, the Order of this Court is as follows:

  1. MOTHER is directed to obtain documentation to prove that she was hospitalized on the date and at the time of the hearing conducted in the above-referenced case before the Domestic Relations Master. Such documentation is to be provided to Tiffany Sherman of the Lebanon County Domestic Relations Office within two (2) weeks from the date of this Order.
  2. Tiffany Sherman of the Lebanon County Domestic Relations Office is to notify this Court in twenty (20) days whether she received documentary corroboration from MOTHER as directed in this Opinion. Thereafter, we will issue an appropriate Court Order.
  3. Until another Court Order is entered, the decision of the Domestic Relations Master shall remain in effect and no support order shall be in place.

 

 

BY THE COURT:

 

__________________________J.

BRADFORD H. CHARLES

BHC/pmd

Cc:    Domestic Relations

Nicole Ashley (Horn) Anspach// 205 W Penn Ave, Cleona PA 17042

Eric John Horn//20 E. Main St., Newmanstown PA 17073

 

 

 

 

 

 

IN THE COURT OF COMMON PLEAS LEBANON COUNTY

PENNSYLVANIA

 

CIVIL ACTION – FAMILY DIVISION

 

 

NICOLE A. (Horn) ANSPACH            :         NO. 2013-5-0879

Plaintiff                                           :         PACSES NO. 088114336

:

  1. :

ERIC J. HORN                                             :

Defendant                                         :

:

APPEARANCES

 

John Gragson, Esquire                   For Plaintiff

Domestic Relations Office

 

Eric J. Horn                                                pro se

OPINION BY CHARLES, J., March 19, 2020

 

What is the obligation of the Court when a party fails to appear for a hearing and then later claims that he/she was ill?  Unfortunately, this scenario is becoming more and more prevalent in Lebanon County child support litigation.  This case is one example.  We author this Opinion not only to address the situation now before the Court, but also to afford guidance to the Lebanon Domestic Relations Office with respect to how this scenario should be handled going forward.

 

  1. FACTS

 

Nicole A. (Horn) Anspach (hereafter MOTHER) and Eric J. Horn (hereafter FATHER) are the parents of two children, who are ages seven (7) & six (6).  A Custody Order is in place that establishes a shared custody arrangement.  In addition to the children who are the subject of this dispute, MOTHER has two (2) other children and FATHER has one (1).

MOTHER filed a child support complaint on August 7, 2019.  The complaint proceeded to a hearing before a Domestic Relations Master (DRM) on October 10, 2019.  Both parties participated in the 2019 support litigation.

FATHER filed a Petition for Modification of Support on January 14, 2020.  FATHER’s modification request was submitted to a DRM for a hearing on February 13, 2020.  FATHER appeared at this hearing.  MOTHER did not.  Because FATHER’s income was so low, and because MOTHER did not appear, the DRM dismissed MOTHER’s complaint for support and terminated the Order that had been entered in 2019.

MOTHER filed exceptions to the DRM’s decision on February 25, 2020.  Within those exceptions, MOTHER alleged for the first time that she had been hospitalized and therefore unable to appear at the February 13, 2020 hearing.  MOTHER had not notified the Domestic Relations Office about her hospitalization or any illness prior to the filing of her exceptions.

MOTHER now asks for what is essentially a “re-do” of her Support Hearing.  FATHER opposes MOTHER’s request.  He challenges the veracity of MOTHER’s hospitalization claim and he argues in the alternative that MOTHER could and should have notified the Court of her inability to be present.  At oral argument, the attorney for the Lebanon Domestic Relations Office confessed some ambivalence about how this issue should be resolved.  On behalf of the Domestic Relations Office, its attorney asked this Court to author an Opinion to provide guidance.  Today, we will do just that.

 

  1. LEGAL PRINCIPLES

We begin with the axiom that support litigants have a duty to participate in the child support process.  When a litigant fails to appear or fails to provide pertinent information and documentation, it is difficult and sometimes even impossible for a Court to discern what is fair.  As we stated in the case of Robinson v. Clark, C.P. Leb. Co. No. 2009-5-0847 (June 22, 2010):

“The child support system cannot afford to permit parties to show up – or not show up – at their whim or convenience.  When a hearing is scheduled, the parties must rearrange their own schedules or formally request a continuance.  Otherwise, consequences must attach [for failure to attend].”

 

Recognizing the above general axiom, we are fully aware that life sometimes gets in the way of good intentions.  Sometimes, people become ill.  Sometimes, motor vehicles break down.  Sometimes, a child’s school calls a parent to notify them of an emergency.  There are an infinite number of other exigencies that can and sometimes do prevent a parent from showing up at a hearing.  No Court can be blind to these exigencies.

In the opinion of this Court, there are three factors that must be considered in deciding whether to afford a non-appearing litigant with a “do-over”.  Those factors, and our observations regarding each, are as follows:

 

  • Can the non-appearing litigant provide independent proof of his/her excuse?

A sad reality of modern litigation is that people sometimes lie.  We therefore are reluctant to accept at face value the non-appearing parent’s proffered excuse…unless there is some sort of documenting proof to verify the excuse.  We acknowledge that there may be some scenarios for which documentary proof may not be possible.  However, for the overwhelming majority of potential legitimate excuses for non-appearance that we can perceive, some sort of independent documentation would be possible to obtain.  The existence of independent proof to verify a non-appearing parent’s proffered excuse is perhaps the most important factor in determining whether the non-appearing parent should be given another opportunity for a hearing.

 

  • Does the non-appearing parent have a history of non-cooperation?

When a non-appearing parent has a history of irresponsibility, such history can and should be considered.  In Emerick v. Miller, C.P. Leb.Co. No. 2011-5-0632 (Sept. 3, 2013), this Court encountered a support plaintiff who consistently failed to appear when directed.  Based upon the plaintiff’s lack of “rudimentary cooperation” with the support process, we dismissed a complaint for support.  Given a similar situation, we would respond exactly the same way.

 

  • What efforts were made by the non-appearing parent to notify the Court?

Every support litigant must recognize that the dispute is not just about him/her.  When a support hearing is scheduled, the other parent is required to take off work in order to be present.  Sometimes witnesses are also asked to inconvenience themselves in order to be present.  The Domestic Relations Office is required to assign a lawyer, a clerk and a Domestic Relations Officer to be present at each hearing.  On top of that, the Court has appointed and paid a DRM to sit as an impartial arbiter of the dispute.

When any party experiences an unexpected situation that prevents attendance at an appointment, it is a matter of common courtesy for the person to call or email in order to explain his/her absence.  In the experience of this Court, when legitimate exigencies arise that prevent attendance, responsible litigants almost always telephone or email the Domestic Relations Office to explain their absence.  In the absence of any explanation of a legitimate excuse, the most common explanation for a support litigant’s failure to appear is that he/she forgot the hearing.

III.     ANALYSIS

We will apply each of the factors outlined above to the facts of this case.  One of the factors will be weighed in favor of MOTHER.  One will be weighed against her.  Ultimately, the decision of whether MOTHER should be afforded a second chance will be dependent upon how we assess the third factor.

  • History of non-cooperation

In this case, we are not aware of any history of non-cooperation on the part of MOTHER.  She appeared during the 2019 support litigation and she appeared at the support conference that preceded the date of the hearing.  The only proceeding for which MOTHER did not appear was the actual DRM hearing itself.  We thus weigh MOTHER’s history of cooperation in her favor.

  • Prompt notice

MOTHER never called, emailed or wrote to the Domestic Relations Office in order to explain her absence.  MOTHER’s first claim of hospitalization was proffered when she filed her exceptions.  This occurred twelve (12) days after the hearing.  We do not consider this to be a prompt notification of a legitimate excuse.  We will therefore weigh MOTHER’s failure to promptly provide an explanation against her request for a second chance.

 

 

  • Independent proof to verify excuse

As of this point in time, we have not seen any documentation that would corroborate MOTHER’s claim that she was hospitalized.  Ordinarily, this lack of corroborating documentation would be fatal to her request for a second hearing.  However, we are aware that this is the first Opinion that has emphasized the need for documentary corroboration of a proffered excuse.  Up until this point in time, neither the Domestic Relations Office nor any litigants would have been aware of our desire to receive documentary corroboration of an excuse.

Because of the above, we will afford MOTHER with the opportunity to provide documentary proof of her hospitalization.  Assuming that MOTHER was hospitalized, she would have received a discharge summary from the hospital and she would be able to contact her doctor’s office for medical records that could corroborate her claim.  If in fact MOTHER can provide such documentary corroboration of her hospitalization, we will afford her with another chance for a hearing notwithstanding our ire that she lacked the courtesy to promptly notify anyone about the reason for her non-appearance.  If MOTHER is not able to provide documentary corroboration of her hospitalization, then her child support complaint should be dismissed.

 

  1. CONCLUSION

Showing up when required is a fundamental duty of any litigant.  The “go-to” response of any court when a litigant fails to appear is to rule against the non-appearing litigant.  This general precept applies in Child Support Court.

When a support litigant fails to appear, it becomes his/her burden to explain that non-appearance.  When an excuse is proffered, it must be analyzed using the template created by this Opinion.  Applying that template to the facts of this case, there is one factor that weighs in favor of MOTHER and one that weighs against her.  Our ultimate decision will depend upon how we analyze the third – and most important – factor, namely, the degree to which documentary corroboration for non-appearance can be provided.  In this case, it should be relatively easy for MOTHER to prove her claim of hospitalization.  We will hold her feet to the fire in terms of providing this proof.

We will give MOTHER two (2) weeks to provide documentary proof that she was hospitalized on the date and at the time of the hearing before the DRM.  If MOTHER provides that documentary corroboration, we will order the DRM to afford her with a second hearing.  If MOTHER does not provide that documentary corroboration, then the DRM’s decision will be affirmed.  An Order to effectuate these decisions will be entered today’s date.

 

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