The Early Resolution Conference (ERC) is an opportunity for self-represented parties to meet with a Family Law Case Manager (FLCM) who will review the relevant issues and assist with moving towards resolution. The FLCM will prepare paperwork and finalize agreements reached during the conference, including a Consent Decree that ends the case.
An ERC is scheduled following the filing of a Response and response fee. The Response is a written document that gives the Respondent a chance to reply and agree or disagree with the requests made in the Petition. Both parties must attend the conference otherwise one or both parties may be assessed a No-Show Fee of $100.00 per person.
Both parties should plan on being at the Early Resolution Conference for 2-3 hours. Either party may request a continuance no less than 2 weeks in advance of the scheduled conference; if prior plans have been made (i.e., jury duty, pre-planned travel, etc.) you can request one by submitting the Request to Reschedule form. The form must be submitted with supporting documentation OR signatures from both parties. Emergencies can occur; emergencies may include hospitalization, severe illness or death in the family. On the Order to Appear, there is a number you can call in addition to submitting your written request.
Pursuant to Administrative Order 2022-113, all ERC’s are currently conducted virtually via the Microsoft Teams application. The FLCM will contact the parties by email at least 15 minutes prior to the conference with the information to access the virtual ERC. If you are unable to participate virtually, please call in with the number and access code sent by the FLCM.
To prepare for the ERC, the Resolution Statement that was attached to the Order to Appear must be completed and filed with the Clerk of Court, and a copy forwarded to the Family Law Case Manager and to the other party 5 days in advance of the conference. Also, prior to the ERC, if no Order of Protection is in effect, the parties should meet and talk about possible settlements and be prepared to discuss those at the ERC.
The ERC is mandatory and there is a $100 No Show Fee per person for non-appearance.