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Tag Archives: Family Services Office

Conflict Resolution Conference: Part 6

It is necessary that you make a commitment to cooperate with the Family Services Office in the following ways:

 

1. Keep scheduled appointments and arrive on time for all meetings.

2. Remain open to new suggestions and ideas.

3. Sign the necessary Authorization for Release of Information forms and bring all requested information to your appointments.

4. Do not bring children with you to the Conflict Resolution Conference.

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Posted by on February 13, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

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Family Services FAQs: Part 6

16.  A motion has been filed and my case is scheduled for court, will I see a Family Relations Counselor?
Yes, in most cases you will meet with a Family Relations Counselor before your case is heard by a judge. The Family Relations Counselor will try to help you resolve the dispute that brought you to the court. The Family Relations Counselor will also meet with the other party and with any attorneys who have filed an appearance in your case.

 

17.  How is Family Services involved on the day of a Temporary Restraining Order Hearing? 
Before the matter goes to the judge, the Family Relations Counselor will meet separately with the applicant and respondent to gather information and identify the nature of the issues. The Family Relations Counselor will prepare a written agreement for self-represented parties if a resolution is reached. The Court will be notified that a hearing is necessary if there is no agreement between the parties.

 

18.  What is the Parenting Education Program? 
The Parenting Education Program is a class designed to educate adults about how children react to separation and divorce. The classes are offered statewide by community providers and are six hours in length. A brochure describing the class and its locations is available by visiting the Judicial Branch website at http://www.jud.ct.gov click on self-help and then publications.

 
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Posted by on January 8, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

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Family Services FAQs: Part 5

13.  I am representing myself in family civil court; can I get general information about the process online? 


Yes, at http://www.jud.ct.gov click on the Self-Help link on the left. Then click on Representing Yourself. The website contains information on where to get assistance and answers to additional frequently asked questions. You can also click on the Publications Link under Self-Help and click on Family Publications for additional information.

 

14.  I have questions about divorce and custody. Can I contact a Family Services office for general information? 


Yes, you may contact a Family Services Office for help with your questions; however, the office cannot give legal advice. You can find your local Family Services’ Office by going to http://www.jud.ct.gov. Click on the Directories on the left. Then click on Family Services.

 

15.  What does Family Services offer its clients in Family Court? 

  • Negotiation
  • Conciliation
  • Mediation
  • Pre-Trial Mediation Settlement
  • Conflict Resolution Conferences
  • Issue Focused Evaluations
  • Comprehensive Evaluations
 
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Posted by on January 7, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

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The 90 Day Waiting Period: Parenting Education Program and Paternity

Parenting Education Program

 You must take part in an approved parenting education program if you have minor children and are getting a divorce, unless the court decides differently. You must do this within 60 days of the Return Date on your Summons. The goal of the class is to explain how divorce affects children and how you and your spouse can help your child adjust to changes in your family life. You may ask to attend a different class than your spouse. Unless a judge finds that you cannot afford to pay the fee, each parent must pay $125 for the program.

 The fee is paid directly to the person or agency providing the program. The required form and pamphlet, including a list of approved program providers, are available at the court clerk’s office, at the Judicial Branch’s CSSD Family Services Office, at the Court Service Center and on the Judicial Branch website at http://www.jud.ct.gov. If you cannot afford to pay the program fee, applications to waive (not pay) the program fee are also available.

 Paternity

 If there is a dispute about who the father of a child is, you may need to get a court order for a genetic test to help determine legal fatherhood.

 TIP: If you have minor children, you must take part in an approved parenting education program unless otherwise ordered by the court. If you do not go to a parenting education program your divorce may take longer.

 
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Posted by on November 2, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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The 90-Day Waiting Period: Divorce and Children’s Issues

Attend Parenting Education Classes

 If you have children, you must take part in a court-approved parenting education program. You must do this within 60 days of the Return Date on your Summons. The required form and a list of court approved parenting education program providers are available at the court clerk’s office, at the Judicial Branch’s CSSD Family Services Office, at the Court Service Center, and on the Judicial Branch website at http://www.jud.ct.gov.

 Special Issues with Children

 If you and your spouse have children, it is very important to make a parenting plan to work out parenting responsibilities. Your plan should address custody and visitation. A judge will decide custody based on what the judge thinks is in the best interest of the child. Usually these orders are the result of agreements between the parents about where the children will live and how much time they will spend with each parent.

 The amount and type of visitation (also called parenting time or access) may depend on the age of your child and how close you live to the other parent. Visitation may also depend on the kind of relationship you and the other parent have with your child.

 Financial support of your child is also important. You and your spouse should try to agree on child support payments, your responsibilities for medical and health insurance, and for medical bills not covered by insurance.

 
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Posted by on October 16, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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The 90-Day Waiting Period: Part I

You must wait at least 90 days after your divorce action starts (Return Date) to get a judgment of divorce. The Return Date is on the Summons and the waiting period generally ends on the Case Management Date in the Notice of Automatic Court Orders.

 During the waiting period, you should try to reach an agreement with your spouse on the financial issues and issues about your children. A private mediator or a family relations counselor from the Judicial Branch’s CSSD Family Services Office may be able to help you reach an agreement. If you reach an agreement use the Dissolution Agreement (JD-FM-172) form.

 During the waiting period, you should also fill out and file a Case Management Agreement/Order (JD-FM-163). If you and your spouse agree on the issues, or if your spouse has not filed an Appearance, your case is called “uncontested.” You may choose a date for an uncontested divorce hearing and write it on the Case Management Agreement form, Section II. To choose a date for your hearing, check with the court clerk or the family caseflow coordinator. In some court locations, you may get a final divorce hearing on your case management date, if your case is uncontested.

 If you are the plaintiff, you will get a docket number for your case in the mail, about 2 weeks after filing the Complaint. Both the plaintiff and the defendant must use the docket number on all legal papers filed with the court.

 TIP: Remember, you are bound by the Automatic Court Orders when you sign the Complaint if you are the plaintiff; and when you are served with the Summons and Complaint if you are the defendant.

 
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Posted by on October 10, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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Getting Divorced, Step-by-Step: Part I

Getting divorced is an important decision. Before you decide to get a divorce, you may want to meet with a family counselor. A counselor is someone who can help you identify issues concerning your marriage and your decision to get a divorce.

 If you cannot work out your differences, divorce is a way to legally end your marriage. If you decide to end your marriage, and you wish to represent yourself, it is called a pro se dissolution. Pro se means “for yourself.” Dissolution is the word Connecticut law uses for divorce.

 “Pro se” should only be used when you and your spouse agree on the basic issues. If you and your spouse disagree about child custody or other important issues, you should seriously consider getting an attorney.

 Not everyone can afford an attorney and court staff cannot give you legal advice. If you have a low income, you may be eligible for free legal services. To learn if you qualify for free legal services, you may call Statewide Legal Services at 1-800-453-3320. The intake workers who answer the telephone speak English and Spanish.

 There are many stages of a divorce. When you and your spouse agree on basic issues, it takes approximately four months to complete a divorce. One way to reach an agreement on basic issues is to work with a mediator. The clerk’s office has lists of mediators who can help you for free or for a fee.

 The Judicial Branch’s Court Support Services Division (CSSD), Family Services Office of the courts, can also mediate divorce cases. Its services are free. Regardless of who starts the divorce, the judge will listen carefully to you and to your spouse.

 NOTE: The best way to find a marriage counselor is through word of mouth. Get a referral from someone you trust, like a friend, a pastor, or a social worker. You may also look in the yellow pages under any of these headings: Marriage Counselors, Psychologists, Psychotherapists, or Social Workers.

 
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Posted by on September 4, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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