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Family court reforms headed to governor’s desk

HARTFORD, Conn. – The General Assembly passed a bill Friday that would change how Connecticut’s family court system operates when it comes to contested child custody cases.

The bill gets one step closer to reforming how guardian ad litems, who are appointed in custody cases to represent the minor children, operate in the family court system. It passed 35-0 in the Senate and 129-0 in the House and is headed to the governor’s desk.

“This in the minds of some people will be viewed as a minor step or a small step, but considering all of the parties that came together to gather around the table and hammer out these issues I believe it is a significant step forward,” Sen. Eric Coleman said. “I have confidence and optimism that it will serve to improve and alleviate some of the complaints that have been raised and brought to the Judiciary Committee.”

The bill brings transparency to the billing practices of guardian ad litems by requiring the court to call for one and it says if a parent is unable to pay the fee they would be prohibited from using a child’s college savings fund or ordering payment from credit card accounts. In contentious cases it also allows the parties to choose a guardian ad litem from a list of 15 presented by the court.

See the complete story at CT News Junkie.

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