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Probate courts serve the basic legal needs of Connecticutians

Many people are concerned about the security and future of someone in their lives who may not be able to manage his or her own affairs. Connecticut has thousands of families with members who must be specially designated by law as another person's charge.

This could be a child or an elderly person with limitations, who are often not expected to manage finances or home maintenance. People with mental disabilities may have or develop a lack of ability to manage these things. Probate courts are there to help friends and families take responsibility for these people.

Judges in probate district courts are elected to terms, generally four years in length. The candidates must be well-versed in and licensed to practice law in Connecticut, as well as demonstrate the right demeanor to work with citizens who require probate court services.

"Many times, people who come through the probate court are going through an extremely difficult period in their lives," noted one candidate for probate court judge. "We need a compassionate, professional probate court that respects the people of our communities."

Probate courts are often called "neighborhood courts" because of the informal feel of their proceedings compared to criminal and civil courts. The two main areas covered by probate courts are family issues like wills, trusts, adoption and parental rights, as well as guardianship for the elderly and people with mental health challenges.

An attorney may help potential heirs, guardians, conservators and others with probate court needs. Legal representation can add confidence to cases dealing with important responsibilities and duties to families and friends.

Source: Journal Inquirer, "2 candidates announce run for probate judge in North Central CT Probate District Court," Caleb Loehrer, accessed April 27, 2018

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