FIFTH ORDER ESTABLISHING OPERATIONAL PROCEDURES FOR CLERMONT COUNTY PROBATE COURT
Effective November 5, 2021
The Clermont County Probate Court has previously issued a Fourth Order Declaring a Judicial Emergency and adopted a continuity of operations on procedures for the Court.
The Clermont County Probate Court has adopted a Fifth Order effective November 5, 2021 governing the operations of the Court.
The following procedures will be implemented effective November 5, 2021:
1. The Probate Court facility, located at 2379 Clermont Center Drive, Batavia, Ohio 45103, will open to the public. All in-person business of the Probate Court will take place at the Probate Court.
2. Social distancing and facial masks are required or as otherwise directed by the Court.
3. Filings by mail are preferred and encouraged. The Probate Court will only accept fax filings as authorized by Local Rule 57.5 at (513)732-8183. Counsel will have a designated pick-up area for processed documents.
4. Questions regarding any pending hearings should be directed to counsel. If an individual does not have counsel, questions should be directed to 513-732-7243.
5. Telephone calls are welcome. The Court may be reached by phone at 513-732-7243, option 6
6. Uncontested adoption hearings shall be conducted by teleconference or video conference as determined by the Court. If the child is more than twelve years old, the uncontested adoption hearing shall be held by video conference or at the Clermont County Probate Court as determined by the Court. Contested adoption hearings may be held by video conference or at the Clermont County Probate Court as determined by the Court.
7. All pre-trials and hearings will be completed by teleconference or video conference, unless the Court orders that the hearing take place in person.
8. All adult name changes and all minor name changes where both parents have consented will be by video conference at the discretion of the Court. When both parents have not consented, the hearing may be continued at the discretion of the Court.
9. Contested matters such as adoptions, guardianship, name changes and objections to inventories and accounts may be conducted by video conference or in person at the Clermont County Probate Court as determined by the Court.
10. Attorneys with pending hearings must contact the Court prior to the hearing to make arrangements to attend by phone or video conference.
11. Attorneys shall appear for citation hearings as directed by the Court.
12. All uncontested matters such as wrongful death hearings, insolvencies and minor settlements shall proceed by video conference with attorneys and their clients unless otherwise directed by the court. All necessary paperwork shall be filed prior to the hearing date.
13. Review hearings on guardianship will be heard telephonically or by video conference at the discretion of the Court.
14. Virtual, telephone, video, and other electronic communication between a Guardian and the Ward shall constitute a visit pursuant to Rule 66.09 (F) of the Ohio Rules of Superintendence. Guardians are required to meet with the ward as needed and at a minimum quarterly. Visits may be conducted virtually in the event an in-person home or residential facility visit is deemed by the Guardian as inadvisable. Acceptable modes of virtual contact include, but are not limited to FaceTime, Skype, Facebook Messenger, Zoom and video conferencing.
15. Marriage Licenses may be obtained either in person at the Probate Court or via Zoom (video conferencing.) Applicants who choose to appear in person do not need an appointment unless an appointment is desired. Applicants who are unable to appear together in person and wish to obtain a marriage license via Zoom may mail the completed Application for Marriage License, $50 cash, and a self-addressed stamped return envelope to Clermont County Probate Court, 2379 Clermont Center Drive, Batavia, OH 45103. Upon receipt of the completed Application and $50 cash, the Court will call the Applicants to set up a date and time to process the marriage license via video conference. The Applicants will need to create a Zoom account by either going online at: https://www.zoom.us/signup or by downloading the App “Zoom Cloud Meetings” from the App Store. The Court will send a Zoom invitation to the Applicants via email. The Applicants will be required to show their photo ID’s as well as any accompanying documents, i.e. Final Divorce Decree and/or a copy of a Death Certificate, if applicable during the meeting. The Court will review the Application during the Zoom meeting to ensure accuracy and to ensure the Applicants desire to move forward with their Application. If the Applicants do not appear via video conference and do not call the Court to inform the Court they are unable to appear, the Applicants must reschedule the meeting within 10 business days or the application will be dismissed. The Applicants would then need to re-start this process if they wish to apply for a Marriage License. If the Applicants do appear via video conference but do not have the appropriate documentation, i.e. valid photo ID, a file-stamped copy of their Final Divorce Decree, and/or a copy of the Death Certificate, if applicable, the Court will not be able to proceed with processing the Marriage Application and will give the Applicants a new video conference meeting date and time.
After the Court has successfully processed the Application, the Court will send a copy of the Marriage Abstract to the Applicants for their signature. The Applicants will need to sign the Abstract and return to the Court along with a self-addressed stamped return envelope.
Upon receipt of the signed Marriage Abstract, the Court will sign and date the Abstract and send to the Applicants the Marriage License along with complete instructions on how to complete the marriage application process.
The Applicants will have 60 days to use the Marriage License after the Court has signed the Marriage Abstract. It is the responsibility of one of the applicants to secure an officiant, mayor or Court official to perform the marriage. It is encouraged that the Applicants verify that one of these individuals will be available within 60 days to perform the marriage before beginning this process. Applicants are also encouraged to check with their church and/or venue to ensure the ceremony can take place within the required sixty days before applying for a Marriage License.
16. Personal inspection of records and requests for copies of documents will be permitted.
17. Persons may also request copies of documents, including marriage licenses, both certified and uncertified, from the Court by mailing a request to the Clermont County Probate Court at 2379 Clermont Center Drive, Batavia, Ohio 45103. Those persons requesting a certified copy of the marriage license shall include the following: full name of both applicants at the time the marriage license was issued: Month, date, and year of marriage; $3.00 (cash or money order only, no personal checks) per certified copy; and a self-addressed stamped envelope so we can mail your certified copy to you. These requests will be processed in as efficient and expedited manner as possible under the current circumstances.