What’s the Connecticut Divorce Parenting Class Requirement?

  •   |   Meghan Freed

Updated December 9, 2023

Many people involved in a divorce, separation, or custody matter wonder whether Connecticut has a divorce parenting class requirement.

The short answer is yes, Connecticut requires parents to take a parenting education class.

Read on to learn more.

Connecticut Parenting Education Program

Under Section 46b-69b, Connecticut requires all parents of minor children to participate in Connecticut’s Parenting Education Program unless the :

  1. parties agree, subject to the approval of the court, not to participate in such program,
  2. court, on motion, determines that participation is not deemed necessary, or
  3. parties select and participate in a comparable parenting education program.

As a practical matter, the vast majority of parents participate in the Parenting Education Program.  One exception, for example, is parents in a collaborative divorce who worked with a mental health professional on their co-parenting skills, etc.

Read: How to Create a Strong Collaborative Divorce Team

What’s the Purpose of Connecticut Parenting Ed Classes?

Connecticut implemented the parenting education class requirement with the aim of lessening the impact on children during family structure changes.  The state requires people who offer the course to cover children’s developmental stages and how they adjust to parental separation.  They will also teach parents dispute resolution, cooperative parenting, and conflict management skills.  Finally, they help parents learn how to reduce children’s stress and review visitation guidelines.

Read: How to Talk to Your Kids About Divorce

How Do Divorce Parenting Classes Work?

Generally speaking, the purpose of the program is to educate parents about the many issues their child or children face when their family situation changes.

The parenting education program takes six hours.  Some providers offer it in two 3-hour classes. On the other hand, other providers offer it in three two-hour classes.

The state has a list of approved providers available here.

Read: What’s Better for the Kids: Staying in an Unhappy Marriage or Divorce?

Can I complete the Required Divorce Parenting Education Classes Online?

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Connecticut Judicial Branch announced that parenting education classes would be offered virtually until further notice.  Therefore, as of the date of this article, it was possible to complete the Parenting Education Program online.

However, prior to the current pandemic, Connecticut required each parent to attend in person.

Next Steps

For more information about Connecticut divorce and family law, check out our Divorce Information and Facts.

If you have questions or want to learn more about how our team of divorce attorneys can help you with your custody or Post Judgment issue, please contact us either here or by phone at 860-560-8160.

Freed Marcroft LLC

Freed Marcroft LLC