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Requesting an emergency ex parte order for custody in Connecticut

Determining the custody of a child is a delicate matter that involves a lot of consideration between the divorcing parents. The court also must consider several factors regarding what is best for the child before issuing a final order. Sometimes, however, the child may be immediately at risk of psychological or physical harm. It is in such situations that one of the parents could request an emergency ex parte order.

With an emergency ex parte order, the petitioning parent is granted temporary visitation or child custody rights. It may also order the respondent parent not to move the child out of Connecticut, do anything else in the child's best interests, interfere with the petitioning parent's rights under the order or interfere with the child's education.

When a petition is made for an emergency ex parte order, the court will schedule a hearing to be held within the following 14 days. The other parent is served a notice of the hearing at least five days prior. The purpose of the hearing is to hear from both sides so that the court may determine whether the situation merits the emergency order. If the court believes that the child is in danger at any time prior to or during the hearing, the court can issue the emergency ex parte order to protect the child. The Department of Children and Families will receive any pertinent information to the case from the court to be used if it conducts an investigation.

Although divorcing parents can petition for emergency ex parte orders, they are not the only ones who can. Anyone who is seeking custody of a minor can make this request. It does not matter if the petitioner is a parent, grandparent, other family member or friend; they may get help with the petition from a family law attorney, who could also help with the rest of the custody case.

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