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Actor loses custody of her children in tragic family law case

Actress Kelly Rutherford of "Gossip Girl" fame has lost the battle to win custody of her two children. The father of the children, German business mogul Daniel Giersch, will have full custody of them and -- as of a recent decision by a Monaco judge -- Rutherford will only be permitted to visit her children in France and Monaco.

Tragically, Rutherford went bankrupt after spending $1.4 million to finance her contentious divorce proceedings with her businessman ex. At the end of it all, she was awarded only a small amount of spousal maintenance adding up to a mere $3,281 a month.

The most recent legal proceedings began last August. Then, Rutherford was forced to give up her 6-year-old daughter and 9-year-old son in a New York City courthouse, handing them over to Giersch's mother. During the emotionally charged courtroom session, one child yelled at Rutherford, "Mommy!" as Rutherford came out of the courtroom, looking emotionally worn down.

Giersch has held primary custody of the children since 2013. In August, he filed a lawsuit alleging that Rutherford had broken her promise to return his children to Monaco after the children spent the summer with Rutherford in the United States.

Depending whose side this child custody matter is observed from, it could be seen as a success or total failure. Indeed, for Giersch, he has been able to secure the custody of his children from an ex-spouse who potentially wanted to take them away from him. The sad side of the story, however, is that Giersch is now a mother who has been legally estranged from her children. Ultimately, this case is the perfect example of why it is crucial to find a peaceful and balanced solution to child custody issues -- a solution where both parents have equal access of their children via a balanced sharing of parenting time.

Source: Page Six, "Kelly Rutherford loses three-year child custody battle," Bruce Golding, Dec. 15, 2015

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