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Pilot program eases divorce cases in New Hampshire

Divorce is one of the most stressful experiences that people can go through, and it has no shortage of complications. Some people in New Hampshire deal with so many confusing court orders and summons that the court ends up issuing a default ruling that favors one spouse because the other did not show up in court.

Failure to appear in court is a serious problem in the Granite State's civil court system. As a result, the judicial branch of the government in Concord initiated a program that offered text messages to a select group of people involved in divorce and parenting cases. The pilot program, launched in the summer of 2018, reminds people of mediation appointments and scheduled court appearances.

Reminders come at three intervals. The first comes a week before the appearance and the last is the day before. Courts are hoping to move the program into other case types and perhaps into criminal courts as well based on its success for family court users.

New Hampshire's judicial branch reported that the failure-to-appear rate in the test group was 40% lower within six months of the program's commencement. A reduction in failure-to-appear rates makes divorce cases shorter and less expensive by saving time previously wasted in the court.

Legal representation is an excellent idea for people thinking of divorce or possibly getting sued for divorce in the future. An attorney can provide invaluable advice before court appearances or during the filing of the documents required to end a marriage.

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