The Vermont Judiciary operates a broad range of programs and services designed to meet the diverse needs of the individuals, families, and businesses that frequent our courts. The Judiciary also manages programs designed for court professionals, such as lawyers, judges, and non-judicial employees. Program evaluation efforts are aimed at developing and ensuring the quality of all court services and programs.

Attorneys

This page provides attorneys who practice in Vermont courts quick access to the topics most relevant to them in one convenient location. 

Coping with Separation and Divorce: A Program for Parents

When your family separates, it may be difficult for you as parents and for your child(ren). How you and the other parent handle the changes makes a big difference in how your child(ren) respond to the situation.

If you have a minor child or children you may be ordered by the court to attend the Coping With Separation and Divorce (COPE) program to help all of you handle your family restructuring.

For more information about registering and the schedule of seminars, please contact the UVM extension at 802-656-3131 or visit the UVM Extension website. You can also contact your local court for assistance.

Guardians Ad Litem

A guardian ad litem (GAL) is a volunteer who advocates for children involved in court cases. A judge appoints a GAL in every child abuse or child neglect case and sometimes in delinquency and other cases.The GAL makes recommendations to the court for the child’s best interests in and out of court until the case is over.

Interpreters

Many people in Vermont do not speak English. Others have a limited ability to read, speak, write, or understand English. Still others are deaf or hard of hearing. All of these people have a right to access the programs and services of the Vermont courts. This right also applies to the programs and services of organizations receiving funding from the Judiciary.

The Judiciary provides interpreting and translating services at no cost. An interpreter converts spoken words or words conveyed in sign language from one language to a different language. A translator converts text written in one language to text written in another language.

If you are a party to or witness in a court proceeding or are the parent of a minor involved in a juvenile action and you believe you need an interpreter or translator, please contact staff at your local court , or you may file a written request with the judge in your case.

Judicial Branch Education

The Vermont Judiciary provides a variety of educational programs for new judges, experienced judges, and court staff. This education helps members of the Judiciary enhance their legal knowledge, administrative skills, and ethical standards. It also helps ensure competent and fair administration of justice.

Jury/Jurors

The jury is one of the most important parts of our American legal system. The right to a trial by jury is guaranteed to every citizen by the United States and Vermont Constitutions. Vermont calls for trial by jury only in the Civil and Criminal Divisions.

Mediators

Parties can attempt mediation to help reach an agreement that is acceptable to everyone.

Parent Coordinators

The Vermont Superior Court Parent Coordination Program helps protect children from exposure to adult conflict and reduces the risk of danger to all family members.

Pro Se Education Program

"Pro se" means that you are representing yourself in court, without a lawyer. Another term is "self-represented litigant." If you represent yourself in a family matter, the court will ask you to attend a Pro Se Education Program. The program helps you understand court procedures and the forms you need to file with the court. Classes are free and open to the public.

Security

The Vermont Judiciary is committed to maintaining a safe and secure environment for everyone who visits a courthouse. To do so, the Judiciary needs everyone's cooperation.

Treatment and Specialty Dockets

The Vermont Judiciary operates treatment court dockets and specialty dockets throughout the state. These dockets offer individuals with substance use disorders and mental health conditions the opportunity to enter treatment and avoid certain consequences, such as incarceration or termination of parental rights. The goals of these dockets include keeping communities safe, supporting treatment for participants, and ending defendants' criminal or harmful conduct.

The Vermont Juvenile Court Improvement Program

The Vermont Juvenile Court Improvement Program seeks to improve outcomes for children in foster care or who are at risk of being removed from home. The program does this by proposing changes to how courts process juvenile abuse and neglect cases and adoption cases. The program's goals are to help ensure children's safety and well-being and to help children find safe, permanent homes.