BY THE OFFICE OF THE FAMILY COURT COMMISSIONER
The Office of the Family Court Commissioner facilitates the following
four types of services.
PARENTING AFTER SEPARATION PROGRAM
This program was designed by parents and professionals who care about
their children. It focuses on the needs of children whose parents are not
together. The emphasis is on promoting the child’s emotional and physical
health as the process of separation evolves. The child’s needs will
resurface through the child’s lifetime framed by the child’s developmental
stage and environment.
Parents with children in divorce, paternity or separation cases are ordered to participate in these
classes. The cost is $50.00 per person.
The statutory definition of mediation is the dispute resolution process
in which a neutral third person, who has no power to impose a decision if
all the parties do not agree, helps the parties reach an agreement by
focusing on the key issues in the case, exchanging information between the
parties and exploring options for settlement. Mediation offers people the
option of resolving conflict by finding a solution most suited to their
needs without the emotional and financial demands of litigation.
Mediation is required by law in certain circumstances and will generally
be ordered when requested by a party. The cost is $125.00 per person.
GUARDIAN AD LITEM
A Guardian ad litem is an attorney appointed by the Court to represent
the best interests of a child. The Guardian ad litem conducts an
investigation and reports back to the Court with a recommendation.
A Guardian ad litem is required to be appointed in certain circumstances
and will generally be appointed when requested by a party. The deposit is
$350.00 per person plus $50 per month until the guardian ad litem has been
discharged and the final billing his been determined. Guardian ad
litem final billing will be submitted at the rate of $85.00
In most cases if mediation is not successful, the Court will order a
custody study. The custody evaluator will generally interview the parents,
children and other relevant people. A report will then be generated which
will include the evaluator’s recommendations relating to custody and
There is a flat fee of $900 and a deposit of $450.00 per person is required.