Needing Their Space

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The family law office is one of several in the Wood County court system, which plans to move into the new Donald F. Black annex next year. That's the former Towne Square business complex, which the County Commission purchased last year.

The family court system is appealing to the commission for enough space to conduct its business.

"They don't have to go outside to talk to their lawyers," said Family Law Judge Annette Fantasia. "They can have restrooms, they can get a drink of water. They have a private place to confer. They have what they need to help resolve their problems."

And that business involves opposing sides of a family legal dispute.

"These are families in crisis," said fellow Family Judge Darren Tallman. "They need room so that parties don't need to be sitting next to each other, or to confer with their attorneys, or with counselors."

The space requirements also have to meet guidelines established by the state Supreme Court.