Serving Divorce Papers Part 2
Last week, I talked about the first few steps in serving divorce papers to your spouse. Today, I want to discuss two more steps in that process, to help you prepare for your divorce. If you have any additional questions, please feel free to contact me. I’d be happy to discuss your situation with you over the phone or during a free consultation.
3. File the paperwork. When you are confident that you have correctly filled out each form, and you are sure that you want to go through with the divorce, you should bring all of the paperwork to the Superior Court Clerk’s office. There are several Superior Court Clerk’s offices in Connecticut – you should go to the one that serves the district where you live. The clerk’s offices in the state of Connecticut are located at:
Ansonia-Milford Judicial District
▪ 14 West River Street, Milford, CT 06460
Danbury Judicial District
▪ 146 White Street, Danbury, CT 06810
Fairfield Judicial District
- 1061 Main Street, Bridgeport, CT 06604
Hartford Judicial District
- 90 Washington Street, Hartford, CT, 06510
Litchfield Judicial District
▪ 80 Doyle Road, Bantam, CT 06750
Middlesex Judicial District
▪ 1 Court Street, Middletown, CT 06457
New Britain Judicial District
▪ 20 Franklin Square, New Britain, CT, 06051
New Haven Judicial District
- 235 Church Street, New Haven, 06510
Meriden Judicial District
▪ 54 West Main Street, Meriden, CT 06451
New London Judicial District
▪ 112 Broad Street, New London, CT 06320
▪ 1 Courthouse Square, Norwich, CT 06360
Stamford-Norwalk Judicial District
▪ 123 Hoyt Street, Stamford, CT 06905
Tolland Judicial District
▪ 20 Park Street, Rockville, CT 06066
Waterbury Judicial District
▪ 300 Grand Street, Waterbury, CT 06702
Windham Judicial District
- 155 Church Street, Putnam, CT, 06260
When you get to the clerk’s office, you should hand in all of the paperwork that you have filled out. In addition, there is a filing fee that you should give the clerk. The filing fee is currently $350, but you can get a waiver of fees signed by a judge if you can prove that you cannot afford to pay this fee. To have the fee waived, you need to fill out the Application for Waiver of Fees/Appointment of Counsel Family form (JD-FM-75).
When you get to the clerk’s office, a clerk will help you determine a Return Date, which is the date that the divorce papers have to be served and filed by. Both you and your spouse should be made aware of this date, but you will not have to appear in court on that day. As the clerk will explain, the Return Date should be set for a Tuesday and you must return the served papers at least 6 days prior to this date. This gives your spouse the proper notification before he or she has to respond to the divorce papers.
4. Serve your spouse. Once you file the paperwork at the clerk’s office, you will have to contact a Connecticut State Marshal, as it is a State Marshal who is responsible for serving divorce papers. State Marshals charge a fee to serve divorce papers, but if you have an Application for Waiver of Fees signed, the court will waive this fee. The court can assign a state rate of $50.00 flat for service by a Marshal if you qualify. The Marshal that you hire will fill out a document referred to as the “Return of Service”. This document proves that the Marshal served the divorce papers to the right person. Once the Marshal fills out this document, you will have to mail it or bring it to the clerk’s office. When you return to the clerk’s office, be sure to bring all of your original paperwork with you.
In the next chapter I’ll talk about steps you should take after being served with divorce papers. However, it is important to note that BOTH parties should take these steps at the beginning of a divorce.