The Connecticut Divorce Return Date in Bridgeport or Stamford is always a Tuesday. The Plaintiff, or the Plaintiff’s attorney, should pick a Tuesday about 4 weeks out to allow the Defendant to be properly served. This also allows the return to be timely filed.
The other spouse (the Defendant) must be served with the Summons, Complaint and Notice of Automatic Orders twelve days before the Return Date. The spouse who filed the divorce (the Plaintiff) must “return” the original documents along with proof that the Defendant was served and pay the filing fee to Court at least 6 days before the Return Date. Once this is done, the Clerk’s Office opens a file and assigns the case a docket number.
Here is some other information on the Connecticut Divorce Return Date:
The parties and their attorneys do not appear in Family Court on the Return Date. The case is not scheduled to be heard by a judge on the Return Date.
The Return Date starts the clock running on the 90-day waiting period to get divorced.
The Defendant spouse should file an Appearance with the Court on before the second day after the Return Date. This allows the Defendant to respond to the Summons and Complaint and ensures that they receive notice of all future court dates. If the Defendant does not file an Appearance, then temporary decisions concerning the children, child support, alimony and other orders could be entered in their absence. In addition, after ninety days has passed, the judge could enter a divorce by default against the spouse who failed to file an Appearance.
Do not ignore the Return Date. Retain counsel or file your Appearance.
Please contact me if you have questions about the Return Date for a Connecticut divorce.