The increasing burden on court dockets has resulted in substantial delays in resolving family law cases. Many lawyers are utilizing “referees” to act as private judges to arbitrate and decide all issues in divorce cases. If a case involves businesses, extensive assets, or marital and non-marital property; or if a day or more is needed for hearing, choosing a referee to decide the case is generally more efficient and cost-effective than a District Court trial. References can be scheduled to accommodate the parties’, lawyers’ and witnesses’ schedules and are conducted in the privacy and comfort of an office setting.
Kristin A. Gustafson has extensive experience as a court-appointed referee conducting both formal and informal hearings. She is knowledgeable in analyzing and applying the law governing family law cases and is skilled in drafting final judgments of divorce. Referee services are available for family law matters in which parties are represented by attorneys. Hearings may be held at our office in Augusta or at another agreed-upon location. There is no charge to travel to another location to conduct hearings in referee cases.