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In re Mohammed J. (Anonymous)

Supreme Court of New York, Second Department

July 3, 2013

In the Matter of Mohammed J. (Anonymous). Administration for Children's Services, respondent; and Hatem J. (Anonymous), appellant. (Proceeding No. 1) In the Matter of Seleen J. (Anonymous). Administration for Children's Services, respondent; and Hatem J. (Anonymous), appellant. (Proceeding No. 2) In the Matter of Noor J. (Anonymous). Administration for Children's Services, respondent; and Hatem J. (Anonymous), appellant. (Proceeding No. 3) In the Matter of Rameen J. (Anonymous). Administration for Children's Services, respondent; and Hatem J. (Anonymous), appellant. (Proceeding No. 4) Docket Nos. N-11437/06, N-11438/06, N-11439/06, N-11440/06

Joel Borenstein, Brooklyn, N.Y., for appellant.

Michael A. Cardozo, Corporation Counsel, New York, N.Y. (Edward F.X. Hart and Marta Ross of counsel), for respondent.

Steven Banks, New York, N.Y. (Tamara A. Steckler and Marcia Egger of counsel), attorney for the children.

REINALDO E. RIVERA, J.P., PETER B. SKELOS, CHERYL E. CHAMBERS, LEONARD B. AUSTIN, JJ.

DECISION & ORDER

In four related neglect proceedings pursuant to Family Court Act article 10, the father appeals, as limited by his brief, from so much of an order of disposition of the Family Court, Kings County (Turbow, J.), dated December 5, 2011, as, after a dispositional hearing, in effect, denied his application for therapeutic visitation with the subject children.

ORDERED that the order of disposition is affirmed insofar as appealed from, without costs or disbursements.

The Family Court properly exercised its discretion in determining that therapeutic visitation between the father and the children was not warranted. The issue of visitation was fully litigated during the dispositional hearing, thereby providing the Family Court with sufficient information to render an informed determination that was consistent with the children's best interests (see Matter of Amir J.-L, 57 A.D.3d 669; Matter of Davis v Davis, 265 A.D.2d 552, 553). There was ample evidence to support the determination that contact with the father would be detrimental to the children (see Giannoulakis v Kounalis, 97 A.D.3d 748, 749).

We reject the father's contention that the Family Court erred in denying his request to adjourn the date scheduled for his testimony at the dispositional hearing. " [A]n application for a continuance or adjournment is addressed to the sound discretion of the trial court, and the grant or denial thereof will be upheld on appellate review if the trial court providently exercised its discretion'" (Matter of Winfield v Gammons, 105 A.D.3d 753, 753, quoting Nieves v Tomonska, 306 A.D.2d 332, 332). The father's absence on November 3, 2011, was unreasonable given that this date had been set and agreed to approximately three months earlier. Furthermore, the court had admonished the father's counsel several months in advance that if the father did not appear on the date scheduled for his testimony, the hearing would proceed to summations.

The father's remaining contention is without merit.

RIVERA, J.P., SKELOS, CHAMBERS and AUSTIN, JJ., concur.


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