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Family Violence Checklist for Hearings

When a case is going to be heard by the Office of Administrative Hearings (OAH) it must be reviewed for domestic violence. The results of this review must be reported to OAH prior to the hearing.

The case must be reviewed for the following:

Is there family violence?

If there is family violence present what is the level?

o   Level One: This case has a Family Violence Indicator

o   Level Two: Information has been reported to CSS that indicates a higher risk of lethality

Best practice procedures to follow on EVERY case with the presence of family violence (level one and two).

  • The CSS attorney will send an email or the “Review for Domestic Violence” form to the assigned ALJ notifying of the absence or presence of family violence on the case. This email is separate from the hearing request email and does not include any facts or circumstances.
  • Hold hearings on the phone, with no video.
  • Redact school, medical, employment, or any location information from pleadings and/or orders.
  • Assess for coercion in judgement settlements and waiver of arrears.
  • CSS/PATHS team will:
    • Case note to CARE with asterisk***
    • Email to CSS CARE management
  • CSS/PATHS team will update the Potentially Dangerous (PD) field with one of two purposes.
    • Y – threat against the office, no family violence
    • D – high level threat of family violence, no necessary threat to the office
  • Refer Level Two cases to the PATHS (specialized domestic violence) team for further investigation and resources.

Practice Tips in the Court Room:

  • Do not mention that FV is present in the case
  • Do not inadvertently release school, medical info or employment information.
  • Do encourage your client to attend virtual court hearings from a safe place, like Legal Aid, or an OHS office.
  • ALJs will no longer ask why someone is NOT appearing on video, as a safeguard.