Cordell & Cordell Litigation Partner Dorothy Walsh Ripka has recently been quoted in numerous media outlets after she represented a client who was denied a divorce because the judge believed that he and his spouse may be able to preserve their marriage due to her observations of the parties’ interactions in court.
The unusual case has drawn much media coverage and drawn criticism from attorneys who believe it sends the message to litigants that they need to be acrimonious towards one another rather than respectful.
In the case, Bullitt Family Court Judge Monice Meredith temporarily declined to dissolve the marriage of Douglas and Nicole Potts after she observed the couple being “respectful and courteous toward one another, and both held themselves in dignified and mature composure.” She elected to continue their case until Oct. 18 and ordered the couple seek counseling to determine if the issues in their relationship could be resolved without ending the marriage.
Ms. Ripka said she was stunned by the decision.
“From my perspective, the ruling was very unexpected, and my goal in my practice is to have my clients prepared for any situation,” Ms. Ripka told WLKY-Louisville. “I can tell you after talking to opposing counsel, neither one of us expected this ruling.”
Click below to read the media coverage of this unorthodox case.