Carroll County Circuit Court

Carroll County Family Law Legal Clinic

Family Law Administration

Courthouse Annex
55 North Court Street, Suite 208
Westminster, Maryland 21157
Telephone: 410-386-2751
Fax: 410-751-5339

General Information

The Family Law Administration is the location of several services available to assist the Court, litigants, and attorneys in handling many types of domestic matters relating to families and children in the court system. The Administration was created to ensure that court cases are handled in a way that has a positive effect on the families involved. Services provided include:

  • Legal information, court form assistance, and referrals to other agencies and community resources
  • Free limited legal assistance from the Family Law Advice Clinic (See below for hours)
  • Referrals and information regarding ways to solve conflict (i.e., mediation, parent coordination)
  • Mediation of family law cases, contested guardianships, Final Protective Orders, and other civil cases as requested
  • Oversight of and intake appointments for the Supervised Visitation Center
  • Court-ordered assessments (custody evaluations/home studies/specific issue evaluations) and fee waiver applications (as funding is available) for Court-ordered services in family law cases
  • Children’s Room for children while adults are in court hearings (Children under 8 require an accompanying adult)
  • Bi-monthly Family Law for the People seminar taught by a local attorney
  • General information regarding the court process
Family Law Personnel

Family Law Administrator - The Administrator develops and supervises many programs assisting families in the court system. The Administrator can often answer questions about the Court process in a particular case, i.e. the next step to expect, the status of your case and where you can go to get help. The Administrator also reviews, before filing, emergency requests in domestic cases. The Administrator, Nathan Hoyle Esq., can be reached at 410-386-2401 or emailed at

Deputy Family Law Administrator - The Deputy Family Law Administrator reviews all domestic cases filed and prepares orders referring litigants to mediation and/or parent education classes. The Deputy assists in grant writing and management, office and personnel management, assists counsel and unrepresented parties in finding resources and reaching consent orders in domestic violence cases, and provides mediation services. The Deputy, Brighid S. Tracy, J.D., can be reached at 410-386-2402 or emailed at

ADR Practitioner - The ADR Practitioner is an attorney mediator and facilitator who is available for alternative dispute resolution services in all civil matters, including Orphans Court and Guardianship matters. The ADR Practitioner is Philip J. Kotschenreuther, Esq., and is available to answer any questions regarding this program at (410) 386-2736 or by email at

Supervised Visitation Center Coordinator - The Supervised Visitation Center Coordinator administers the Carroll County Visitation Center. With a Court Order from a Carroll County Court and after formal individual intake interviews with the Coordinator, parties use the Center for supervised visitations, monitored visitations, or monitored exchanges of children. There is no charge for these services. The Coordinator is available during business hours for consultations regarding visitation plans or for locating services in other jurisdictions. An appointment is recommended. The Supervised Visitation Center Coordinator, Cori Bockmiller, can be reached at 410-386-2735 or by email at

Domestic Case Navigator (Habla Español) - The Domestic Case Navigator provides legal information and referrals, such as assistance in completing legal forms, explaining the legal process and what happens at each stage, providing information about outside resources, and explaining the other services that can be provided within the court system. Walk-ins are welcome. Please feel free to contact the Domestic Case Navigator, Ivette Perez, to ask questions or schedule an appointment at 410-386-2734 or email at

Administrative Assistant - The Administrative Assistant provides general information to the public and helps refer litigants to the appropriate staff person. The Administrative Assistant, Margaret Gude, can be reached at 410-386-2751 or emailed at

Children’s Waiting Room - This trauma-informed space is available for use by children who come to the courthouse with an adult on court business. The room is supplied with toys, art supplies, some infant necessities, and a television. There is no staff assigned to this area, so children under the age of 8 must have an accompanying adult.

List of Legal Resources

Domestic Violence Program - Located near Family Law Administration in room 206, the POARP (Protective Order Advocacy and Representation Project) assists victims of domestic violence. The POARP Legal Advocate helps petitioners fill out and file petitions for protective orders and related documents for both Circuit and District Courts. The Advocate also assists in explaining the process and referring petitioners to appropriate services when necessary, such as crisis workers, counseling, and shelter. No appointment is necessary, and assistance is given on a first-come, first-served basis. There is also a POARP attorney on staff to provide representation for eligible victims at protective order hearings. Appointments are necessary to meet with the attorney. POARP is grant funded through the Woman’s Law Center of MD and the House of Ruth and serves all of Carroll County. For further information, please contact the Legal Advocate at 410-386-2440.

Courthouse Family Law Advice Clinic - An attorney experienced in family law is available remotely by calling 410-386-2751 on Wednesdays from 1 pm- 4 pm and Thursdays from 9 am -noon to assist in the completion of family law forms and/or to provide limited legal advice on the following topics: divorce, separation, custody, visitation, child support, alimony, division of marital property, mediation, name change, guardianship, domestic violence, contempts, and emergency evaluations. Service is provided on a first come first serve basis and is limited to persons below a certain income level who are not represented by an attorney. The forms are also available in the Civil Clerk’s Office and on the internet at

Custody Evaluations - The Court may order a full or limited custody evaluation assigned to an independent evaluator. There is a cost for these evaluations that is determined by the extent of the investigation. For further information, please call 410-386-2401 or email

Please see the Maryland Department of Family Administration site for additional information