The Court System

State Courts

Do many states have family courts?

Some states have specific courts that solely address family law cases. In other states, some circuit courts address family law and other types of cases. This varies dramatically from state to state. New York has a New York City Family Court, which has jurisdiction over cases involving abused or neglected children, adoption, custody and visitation, domestic violence, foster care approval and review, guardianship, juvenile delinquency, paternity, persons in need of supervision, and support. See

Hawaii adopted family courts by statute in 1965. Delaware had its first statewide family court in 1971. The movement is on the rise for the creation of more family courts. Maine had its first family court in 1998. The North Carolina Legislature created some family courts in 1999.


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