Kath, I really wasn't looking for judgment from someone, like yourself,
Furelite, it is not my judgment, but the way courts react when parents don't show up, though they are named as a defendant ; read Gemini's response (seemed to have missed that?), as she has been a prosecutor.
who has no idea what the case is about
No one can know if you don't say.
So perhaps you can see why I don't really want to have to drag my husband four hours from a new job to make an appearance in a small claims court regarding a nonexistant claim on my17 year old honors daughter??
I'm sorry, but he SHOULD be there, whether you think it petty or not. Not showing an interest on the part of the parent is ALWAYS a red flag to a court. And don't be surprised if many stories change once you get into court. No one can guess what will happen there.
I can tell you most fathers would be there no matter what. That's a conscientious parent. Good luck.