Custody

The Custody Conciliator’s office is located in but is not a part of, the Domestic Relations Section. Custody Conciliation Conferences are held in the Custody Conciliator’s office. The role of the Custody Conciliator is to assist parties in reaching custody agreements. In the event an agreement cannot be reached, the Conciliator will make a Report and Recommendation to the Judge assigned to your case.

To have a case heard by the Custody Conciliator, a Complaint for Custody or a Petition for Custody Modification must be filed at the Prothonotary’s office, with payment of the appropriate filing fees (unless said fees are waived by the Court).

Custody Complaints / Petitions

Custody Complaints or Petitions are created, by the filing party, one of two ways:

  • By contacting an attorney. One of the agencies below may be able to refer you to an attorney:
    • Butler County Bar Association: 724-841-0130
    • Neighborhood Legal Services: 866-761-6572
  • The Prothonotary’s Office also has a referral list of attorneys available to the public.

By proceeding on your own (Pro se). You may use the forms (located under Documents on the right of this page), pick up pre-printed forms at the Butler County Prothonotary’s Office, or you may obtain custody pleadings/forms and service forms from the Pennsylvania Unified Judicial System (UJS) website. In the alternative, you may choose to do research at either a Pennsylvania law library or at a legal website to create your own pleadings.

Existing Cases

For already existing cases, Petitions for Contempt or Special Relief are to be presented through Motion Court to the Judge assigned to your case. Generally, these Petitions will be addressed by the Judge and are not scheduled for a Custody Conciliation Conference. View our pamphlet (PDF), which explains these procedures further.