The Brazilian Supreme court awarded US$ 110,000 of moral damages to a daughter who felt emotionally abandoned and felt treated as second class daughter by her father. The court dismissed the father’s defense that this emotional abandonment was caused by the mother’s aggressive behavior. Also the fact that paternity of the now adult daughter was only officially established recently.
Such legal liability is now in the process of being incorporated into the ECA statute of adolescent and children’s rights.
The intent of giving emotional support is noble. Human-Stupidity deplores the overcriminalization and total regulamentation of all aspects of human behavior under the threat of heavy civil liabilities.
Due to the importance of such decisions to Libertarians, the men’s rights (and feminist) movement, we translated two newspaper articles in their entirety.
Translation: Superior Tribunal in Brazil orders father to pay compensation for emotional abandonment
(STJ condena pai a indenizar filha por abandono afetivo)
SAO PAULO – The Third Chamber of the Superior Court of Justice (STJ) ordered a father to pay R $ 200 thousand [US$ 110 000] to his daughter for "emotional distance". The decision is unprecedented. In 2005, the Fourth Chamber of the Supreme Court had rejected moral damages for emotional distance.
The case judged originates from São Paulo. The author of the case obtained judicial recognition of paternity and filed suit against the father because he had suffered material and emotional neglect during childhood and adolescence. The trial judge dismissed the petition and attributed the father’s distance to "aggressive behavior" of her mother towards the father. The woman appealed to the appeals court and said the father was "wealthy and prosperous." The Court of São Paulo (TJSP) reversed the judgment and set the compensation for R$ 415,000.
On appeal to the Supreme Court, the father argued that there was no abandonment, and even if he had done so, there would be illegal to be financially indemnified and the only possible punishment for failing with such obligations fathers would be the loss of family power.
Minister Nancy Andrighi , the of the court’s third chamber, however, understood that it is possible to demand compensation for moral damage caused by emotional abandonment by parents. "Love is optional, care is duty," she said in the sentence. For her, there is no reason to treat the damage to family relationships differently from other civil damages.