Family/Paternity Unit

Family /Paternity Unit Contact Information

                      Amber Mann  (920) 683-4036

NOTE:  Effective May 1, 2000, all post-adjudication records for paternity cases filed after May 1, 2000 are open records (after paternity has been established).  Pre-adjudication paternity records are not open public records; they are confidential by statute.  Access to confidential records is limited to parties of the action or counsel of record.  All paternity records filed prior to May 1, 2000 are confidential (pre-adjudication and post-adjudication).

Mandatory E-Filing for FA & PA Cases Implemented March 1, 2017 for Manitowoc County

-"mandatory e-filing" applies to all attorneys or high volume filers filing 10 or more cases per year

- pro se litigants can become voluntary e-filers

- refer to "E-Filing Resources" for more information on becoming an e-filer and for information and guidelines relevant to e-filing
Appeals for the Wisconsin Circuit Courts

The Supreme Court Clerk has prepared a handbook which outlines the basic rules and procedures for the
Wisconsin Circuit Court of Appeals. This handbook pertains to civil, small claims and criminal appeals.

Citizens Guide to Filing an Appeal
A manual for filing an appeal to the Wisconsin Court of Appeals (Rev. 8/2015)
(Note: page 35 of the manual has direct links to each form).

Appellate Forms
Link for the required forms for filing an Appeal in the Wisconsin Court of Appeals.

Wisconsin Supreme Court and Court of Appeals
Website for contact information and FAQ.

Did you know that you can monitor the status of a Court of Appeals case online?  Simply go to
Court of Appeals, click "I Agree", enter the Court of Appeals case number, then click "Search."

Filing Fees 

$184.50    to commence divorce or legal separation (with no children or no request for
                      spousal support or maintenance)
$194.50    to commence divorce or legal separation (with children or request for spousal
                      support or maintenance)
$  30.00    post-judgment motion revising judgment (for child support or matters other 
                      than custody or placement)

$  50.00    post-judgment motion revising judgment (affecting custody or placement)

Also see Circuit Court Filing Fees for additional fees

Petition for Waiver of Fees and Costs (GF-410A) and Order on Petition for Waiver of Fees
and Costs
(GF-410B)  While the Court may make an initial determination of indigency as it pertains
to waiver of the filing and service fees for an action, pursuant to s.814.29(2), Wis. Stats., the Court is
authorized to reassess indigency status after the action has been filed and may require payment of
the filing fee or service fees if the petitioning party no longer meets indigency requirements.  Further,
s.814.29(3)(a), Wis. Stats., provides a remedy for recovering costs from the opposing party if a
judgment is entered in favor of the party who petitioned for waiver of the fees.  Upon conclusion of
an action, the Court will review any indigency status and make an appropriate determination, by
Court order, as to the requirement of payment of any fees previously waived. 

Guardian Ad Litem (GAL) Resources

Confidential GAL Reports
Order Designating Guardian ad Litem (GAL) Reports as Confidential (Eff. 05-14-2014).

GAL Addendum
Addendum to Order Appointing GAL
(rev. 3-13-17).

Waiver of GAL Deposit Requirement
Petition and Order for the waiver of the GAL deposit requirement.  A waiver only pertains to the deposit
requirement....once a GAL submits actual billing for services rendered, the parties will be allocated
responsibility for payment of the bill by the Court.  Payment plans are available to pay the balance in
monthly installments. Statutory interest will be charged on any unpaid balance until paid in full.

Order for Payment of GAL Fees
Effective January 20, 2015, this revised form will be required for all Petitions for Payment of GAL Fees
Manitowoc County. If you are a (non-contract) GAL for Manitowoc County you can receive a Word fill-in
version of this document
by emailing a request to:  The GAL billing rate is
00.00/hr. (effective 1-1-17)

Domestic Abuse Guidebook for Wisconsin Guardians ad Litem
Addressing Custody, Placement and Safety Issues (159 pages)


If you need an interpreter, you need to advise the Clerk of Court office prior to your scheduled hearing,
so arrangements can be made to have an interpreter available for your hearing, or you can complete an
 Interpreter Request and submit it to the Clerk of Court prior to your scheduled hearing. 

The Clerk of Court also has a bilingual Counter Clerk who speaks limited Spanish, who is available to
assist our Spanish speaking community either in person or by telephone. 

One of our contracted Spanish interpreters has simultaneous interpreting equipment available upon
request to provide simultaneous Spanish interpreting for multiple parties at once (i.e. defendant and other
family members).  The equipment involves the interpreter wearing a headset microphone while the Spanish
speaker would wear ear buds or an external ear piece connected to a receiver, which has volume controls.

Denovo Review

Motion and Notice for New (DeNovo) Hearing (FA-4130V) when a party is dissatisfied with the decision
of the Family Court Commissioner, they can request a new hearing before the circuit court judge assigned
to the case, on the same issues.  Local court rule requires request for de novo review to be made no later
than thirty (30) days after the date of the Order of the Family Court Commissioner.

Findings of Fact, Conclusions of Law & Judgment

To comply with the Clerk's statutory requirement under Wis. Stats. s.767.36, Manitowoc County's policy
is to mail a copy of the divorce judgment to the petitioner and respondent, regardless of whether or not
the parties are efiling parties.

Attorney Fees Awarded in a Family Case

If an attorney is awarded attorney fees in a family case and the party does not pay as ordered, it will be
necessary for the attorney to file a new small claims or civil action in order to commence garnishment
actions for collection of those attorney fees.  A garnishment can be "added" to a civil action between parties,
however, an attorney who is awarded fees is not a party to the FA action.

Text Message Reminders

You can now sign up to receive text message reminders for upcoming court hearings. 
Drop off or mail completed form to Clerk of Court office.
           ·Messages will be sent at 6:00 p.m. two days prior to any scheduled court activity
           ·Messages will not be sent on holidays or weekends
           ·Ad Hoc messaging can be done by court staff to advise parties of cancellations
           ·Text messages are supplemental notifications, provided as a convenience for customers
             who elect the service

Forms / Documents / Procedures

Child Support Information  (link to Wisconsin Dept. of Children and Families On-line Services)
Manitowoc County Family Court Forms  (link to Manitowoc County Family Court Commissioner's website) 
Divorce/Annulment Worksheet (F-05080) vital statistics form 
Portion of Judgment Regarding Surname (FA-4133V) certification by the court as to the right to use
a former legal surname

Process Service Information (FA-5000V) describes common methods of service available and
service time limits
Admission of Service (FA-4119V) for use when a party voluntarily admits service of documents 
Affidavit of Service (FA-4120V) for use when a third party serves documents on a party
Affidavit of Mailing (FA-4121V) for use to document mail service of documents upon a party

Affidavit of Efforts to Serve Respondent  (FA-4184V)  for petitioner to document efforts made to serve the
respondent to justify performing service by publication
Publication Summons (FA-4122V) to provide notice by publication in a newspaper to a respondent who 
cannot be served personally of the existence of an action for divorce or legal separation
Publication Affidavit of Mailing (FA-4123V) when service by publication is done as a last report, a Publication
Affidavit of Mailing must also be mailed to the respondent at his/her last known address

More Family Forms ( forms are available in both PDF and Word format; also view Form Summaries for brief description of purpose and use of the form.


Manitowoc County Local Court Rules for county specific family procedure information