The National Center for State Courts recently released a screening tool for divorce cases to help courts “meaningfully differentiate cases.” The tool is designed to identify families who are largely in agreement on the issues in their case and need minimal or no court assistance. According to NCSC, “[t]he ultimate purpose of the tool is to ascertain that litigants who are ready to complete the process (uncontested) do not get lost in the system or forced into services that they do not want or need.”

Additionally, by streamlining the process for these uncontested cases, courts can ensure that valuable staff time and resources are dedicated to families who need or would benefit from enhanced services. The tool is not a one-size-fits-all instrument, and jurisdictions around the country can adapt it to their particular circumstances.

NCSC developed the tool with guidance and input from an international advisory committee of domestic relations experts, on which Honoring Families Initiative Senior Advisor Hon. Janice Davidson (Ret.) served.