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Joseph Bonfig's Pro Bono Work as Guardian Ad Litem

July 15, 2010

Joseph Bonfig has provided pro bono legal services.  He was appointed Guardian ad litem for a 20 year old New Jersey woman.  Mr. Bonfig was appointed to represent the woman in an Abuse and Neglect matter because of the woman’s limited mental capacity.  The New Jersey woman’s four year old son currently resides with her in a therapeutic foster home under the care and supervision of the New Jersey Department of Youth and Family Services.  Her one year old daughter, who was born with a congenital heart defect and requires special care, resides in a separate Special Home Service Provider foster home.

Prior to Mr. Bonfig’s appointment as Guardian ad litem, the woman was classified as mildly cognitively impaired and was found to be functioning below grade level in all academic subjects.  As a result of her mental impairment and concern for her ability to understand her child’s special medical needs, her daughter was placed in a separate foster home and was ordered to take parenting and life skills classes and to undergo therapy.  At that time the woman was allowed one weekly two hour supervised visit with her newborn child.  In addition, the Court was investigating her custodial care of her son.

Under Mr. Bonfig’s guidance, the woman’s weekly visits with her child have increased in duration and she continues to receive parenting education and therapy.  She has maintained custodial care of her son and any of the Court’s concerns regarding the same has been resolved.  She has also improved personally and academically as she is close to completing her studies to be a medical assistant.  At this time, based on her progress, the Court anticipates that the woman and her son will reunite with the woman’s daughter in the same foster care home in the near future.  Lastly, the Court anticipates that it will refer the family unit to independent family living.

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