Judge outlines family court

By BETH CRACE State Journal Staff Writer Published:

It's a rare day when you can get voters in all 120 of Kentucky's counties to agree on a constitutional amendment.

But that's exactly what happened last November when voters approved an amendment adding family court to the state's judicial system, Judge Reed Rhorer told the Frankfort Rotary Club during its weekly meeting Wednesday at the Holiday Inn-Capital Plaza.

The amendment made permanent a concept started as a pilot program in Jefferson County in 1991. Family courts hear cases centered on "family issues" like divorce, child custody, domestic violence and neglect.

"Hopefully, it gives us a little insight into what to do and how to handle particular problems," said Rhorer.

In jurisdictions where there are no family courts adoptions and divorces are handled in circuit court and issues like truancy, child abuse and spouse abuse typically are handled in district court, Rhorer said. In counties with family courts the same court hears all cases involving a family.

For more on this story, see the latest State Journal.

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