Writing Letters to the Court
People often write Judges and Commissioners letters asking that they do certain things for them. Normally, there are forms that are required to be completed to "move" the court to have hearings or follow-up if someone didn't do what they were supposed to do. Unless the court has specifically directed you to write him/her a letter, you should review this website to find a form that meets your needs or call the Family Court Self-Help Center with questions.
When you do write letters to the court you need to be aware of what is referred to as ex parte communication.
What is Ex Parte Communication?
Ex Parte Communication is an attempt (not allowable by law) to communicate with a court official, either verbally or in writing, without the knowledge or consent of the other party. Written correspondence (letter) to the court is considered to be ex parte when there is nothing written in the letter to indicate that the other party received a copy. When this occurs the court official may not consider the contents.
How do I ensure that my communication with the courts may be read?
Use copy notation (CC:) on all of your correspondence with the courts. Copy notation tells the reader that a copy of the letter is being sent to the named recipients. Please bear in mind that you must send a copy to all parties involved with your case. If the State of Wisconsin is involved, you must copy the letter to the attorney or caseworkers assigned to your case, and mail it to:
Waukesha County Child Support Enforcement Agency
Administration Center, Room 348
515 W. Moreland Blvd.
Waukesha, WI 53188
If you or the other party have attorneys, it is wise to send a copy to both the party as well as his/her attorney as well as the GAL if one is assigned.
What if I have a Restraining Order against the other party?
If a restraining order prohibits you from sending the letter directly to the other party, you may provide the other party’s copy of the correspondence to the court. Along with the copy, please be sure to include a cover letter indicating that a restraining order exists, a stamped envelope and request that the court forward the letter to the other party for you.