Kirsten Brodsky, staff attorney with the New York Legal Assistance Group’s Matrimonial and Family Law Unit (FLU), recently won a large child support decision for her client, a Bangladeshi immigrant and victim of domestic violence.

Ms. M and her husband were married in Bangladesh in the summer of 1998, and welcomed the birth of their first child one year later in the United States.

Upon their immigration, however, Mr. M. quickly became abusive, and both Ms. M. and her young daughter suffered years of serious physical, emotional, and sexual abuse, causing them extensive and prolonged injuries and psychological trauma.

Fleeing her husband in 2003, Ms. M. successfully petitioned for divorce in 2007. With NYLAG’s assistance, Ms. M. was granted the divorce, as well as $811.00 per month in child support, a final order of protection against her ex-husband, and equitable distribution of their marital assets.

But her ex-husband refused to pay. Citing health concerns for which he had no legitimate medical records, Mr. M. failed to pay thousands of dollars in child support and tens of thousands of dollars generated from the liquidation of the marital assets.

This caused Ms. M. extreme hardship: her limited English skills, her responsibilities for caring for the child, and Mr. M’s vindictive use of his connections within their immigrant community had made finding employment nearly impossible.

Ms. M. was represented by Kirsten Brodsky, FLU staff attorney. Ms. Brodsky represented her at trial, and on October 10, the Court decided in favor of Ms. M., and entered a money judgment for $134,055, the entire sum that she had sought.