Covid-19 has rattled our world. Many people are dealing with financial troubles, health burdens, and the difficulty in making everyday life work in a pandemic. If you were thinking about getting a divorce before the pandemic started, or this tumultuous time has forced you to take a closer look at your marriage, life is probably even more hectic and uncertain. You might wonder – is it even possible to get a divorce right now? Are the courts open? Read on to learn more about Connecticut divorce during Covid-19.
Can You Get Divorced Without Going to Court?
This is one of the most common questions that I am getting right now. There are some situations in which you can take advantage of virtual hearings or you will not have to go to court. For example, if you have a full written agreement regarding the divorce or other family matters, you can request an approval of your agreement without having to go to court. If you and your spouse are in agreement regarding final judgement for custody, visitation, legal separation, and more, you could have your situation resolved without the need to go to court.
Starting in June, Connecticut courts also started having virtual hearings for family court matters such as uncontested divorces and final agreements. Family status conferences and pretrials by telephone were resumed in May. Please note that these are remote events and do not require you to physically go to court.
In some situations, your divorce may be scheduled for a case date. In this situation, you spend about 45 minutes before a judge and about 45 minutes with a Family Relations Counselor. Because of Covid-19, these meetings are currently being held in a virtual setting so that you do not have to physically appear in court.
Another question that I am getting a lot lately is about parenting classes. Under normal circumstances, spouses who are going to co-parent after their divorce are required to participate in a parenting education program. However, there are alternatives to in-person classes due to the pandemic that we face.
Your first option is to potentially avoid these classes altogether. This can only happen if you and your spouse agree not to participate in the program, and a judge approves your request. A judge has the discretion to approve or deny the request, so even if you and your spouse have come to an agreement, a judge can still require that you both participate in parenting education classes.
The parenting education programs are now being offered virtually to avoid in-person meetings. If required to complete one of these programs, you can sign up here.
An online program will be accepted as a fulfillment of the requirements. Keep in mind that you will have to pay for your parenting classes unless the court waives the fee.
Navigating a divorce in normal times is stressful, but it can be a nightmare during a global pandemic. Now more than ever you need a professional on your side to protect your interests and help you get through the process as seamlessly as possible. I am happy to provide assistance and stand by you through your unique divorce situation. Simply contact me for more information.