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Family Forms
Responding to a Divorce

Disclaimer: The information on this web page is provided as a service and a convenience by the Connecticut Judicial Branch. It is not intended as legal advice to any person.

If you have questions about the use of these forms, your legal rights, or particular issues in your case, it is strongly recommended that you talk to an attorney.

Due to the changing nature of the law, the forms and information found on this web site will change from time to time. It is up to you to follow the current procedures and to file the correct, up-to-date forms.

Each court location has a Clerk's Office and many locations also have a Court Service Center that can give you help and information about court procedures. Please note, however, that Clerk's Office and Court Service Center personnel cannot provide you with legal advice.
These instructions are to help you represent yourself in a divorce. Legal words and court documents can be confusing. The more you know, the more comfortable you will be when you fill out the necessary court forms and come to court. These instructions will give you some useful information and instructions on filling out the necessary forms.

Every case is different and this instruction sheet is to be used as a guide only; if you think you need more help you may want to get an attorney. You can also go to a Court Service Center or contact the Connecticut Network for Legal AidExternal Link - You are leaving the Connecticut Judicial Branch websiteor find additional information at the Law Libraries. Court staff can answer procedural questions and help you understand the legal process, but cannot give you legal advice.

You are the defendant in a divorce if a copy of the court forms called a Summons, Complaint and Notice of Automatic Orders have been delivered to you (or served on you). A state marshal may hand them to you or leave them at your home. It is important that you read all the documents.

After you get a copy of the court papers, you may contact an attorney to represent you or follow the steps below if you want to represent yourself. Even if you agree with what your spouse says in the complaint, you can take part in your case. If you do nothing, the judge may order what your spouse asks for in the Complaint.

The following forms can be filed when responding to a divorce: 

By filing an Appearance form you are telling the court that you are acting as your own attorney and giving the court your mailing address. It is best to file an Appearance as early as possible. Once you file an Appearance you will receive all court notices and papers filed about your case.

An Answer form will tell the court if you agree or disagree with each numbered statement in the Complaint. There is no court fee to file an Answer.

Filing a Divorce Complaint/Cross Complaint lets the court know what you want. It also allows the divorce to continue even if your spouse decides to stop or withdraw the case. There is a court fee to file a cross complaint.

If you have children under the age of 18 (eighteen), you must participate in a parenting education program within 60 (sixty) days after a family case is filed. There is a fee for the classes that you will have to pay unless the court has decided that you do not have to. There is a form to ask the court to let you not pay the fee. It is the Application For Waiver Of Fees/ Appointment Of Counsel Family (JD-FM-75).

You will need the following forms to take part in the class: 

Once your forms are filled out, give them to, or file them with the court clerk. Be sure to make a copy for yourself and send a copy to the plaintiff.

Please note that if you decide to take part in the divorce process that you will have to fill out other forms for the final hearing.




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