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Senate Bill No. 859

Public Act No. 03-130

AN ACT CONCERNING DISABILITY DETERMINATIONS FOR PURPOSES OF CHILD SUPPORT, PREJUDGMENT AND POSTJUDGMENT REMEDIES FOR ALIMONY AND SUPPORT PAYMENTS, AND RESTORATION OF THE BIRTH NAME OR FORMER NAME OF A SPOUSE.

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Assembly convened:

Section 1. Section 46b-215b of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective October 1, 2003):

(a) The child support and arrearage guidelines promulgated pursuant to section 8 of public act 85-548* and any updated guidelines issued pursuant to section 46b-215a shall be considered in all determinations of child support amounts and payment on arrearages and past due support within the state. In all such determinations, there shall be a rebuttable presumption that the amount of such awards which resulted from the application of such guidelines is the amount of support or payment on any arrearage or past due support to be ordered. A specific finding on the record that the application of the guidelines would be inequitable or inappropriate in a particular case, as determined under criteria established by the [commission] Commission for Child Support Guidelines under section 46b-215a, shall be [sufficient] required in order to rebut the presumption in such case.

(b) In any determination pursuant to subsection (a) of this section, when a party has been determined by the Social Security Administration, or a state agency authorized to award disability benefits, to qualify for disability benefits under the federal Supplemental Security Income Program, the Social Security disability program, the state supplement to the federal Supplemental Security Income Program, the state-administered general assistance program or the general assistance program, parental earning capacity shall not be a basis for deviating from the presumptive support amount that results from the application of the child support guidelines to such party's income.

[(b)] (c) In any proceeding for the establishment or modification of a child support award, the child support guidelines shall be considered in addition to and not in lieu of the criteria for such awards established in sections 46b-84, 46b-86, 46b-130, 46b-171, 46b-172, 46b-215, 17b-179 and 17b-745.

Sec. 2. Section 46b-80 of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective October 1, 2003):

(a) The following procedures shall be available to secure the financial interests of either spouse in connection with any complaint under section 46b-45 or 46b-56 or any application under section 46b-61, including, but not limited to, present and future financial interests in connection with an order for alimony or support pendente lite or other order for periodic payments: (1) Any remedy afforded by chapter 903a concerning prejudgment remedies, whether or not a money demand is made in such complaint or application; and (2) at any time after the service of such a complaint or application, if either party claims an interest in real property in which the other party has an interest, either spouse may cause a notice of lis pendens to be recorded in the office of the town clerk of each town in which is located real property in which the other spouse has an interest. The notice shall contain the names of the spouses, the nature of the complaint or application, the court having jurisdiction, the date of the complaint or application and a description of the real property. Such notice shall, from the time of the recording only, be notice to any person thereafter acquiring any interest in such property of the pendency of the complaint or application. Each person whose conveyance or encumbrance is subsequently executed or subsequently recorded or whose interest is thereafter obtained by descent, or otherwise, shall be deemed to be a subsequent purchaser or encumbrancer, and shall be bound by all proceedings taken after the recording of such notice, to the same extent as if he were made a party to the complaint or application. A notice of lis pendens recorded in accordance with this section may be discharged by the court upon substitution of a bond with surety in an amount established by the court if the court finds that the claim of the spouse against property subject to the notice of lis pendens can be satisfied by money damages.

(b) All notices of lis pendens recorded pursuant to the provisions of subsection (a) of this section shall be subject to the provisions of subsection (c) of section 52-325 and sections 52-325a to 52-325c, inclusive.

Sec. 3. Section 46b-82 of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective October 1, 2003):

(a) At the time of entering the decree, the Superior Court may order either of the parties to pay alimony to the other, in addition to or in lieu of an award pursuant to section 46b-81. The order may direct that security be given therefor on such terms as the court may deem desirable, including an order pursuant to subsection (b) of this section or an order to either party to contract with a third party for periodic payments or payments contingent on a life to the other party. In determining whether alimony shall be awarded, and the duration and amount of the award, the court shall hear the witnesses, if any, of each party, except as provided in subsection (a) of section 46b-51, shall consider the length of the marriage, the causes for the annulment, dissolution of the marriage or legal separation, the age, health, station, occupation, amount and sources of income, vocational skills, employability, estate and needs of each of the parties and the award, if any, which the court may make pursuant to section 46b-81, and, in the case of a parent to whom the custody of minor children has been awarded, the desirability of such parent's securing employment.

(b) Any postjudgment procedure afforded by chapter 906 shall be available to secure the present and future financial interests of a party in connection with a final order for the periodic payment of alimony.

Sec. 4. Subsection (a) of section 46b-84 of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective October 1, 2003):

(a) Upon or subsequent to the annulment or dissolution of any marriage or the entry of a decree of legal separation or divorce, the parents of a minor child of the marriage, shall maintain the child according to their respective abilities, if the child is in need of maintenance. Any postjudgment procedure afforded by chapter 906 shall be available to secure the present and future financial interests of a party in connection with a final order for the periodic payment of child support.

Sec. 5. Section 52-259c of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective October 1, 2003):

(a) There shall be paid to the clerk of the Superior Court upon the filing of any motion to open, set aside, modify or extend any civil judgment rendered in Superior Court a fee of thirty-five dollars for any housing matter and a fee of seventy dollars for any other matter, except no fee shall be paid upon the filing of any motion to open, set aside, modify or extend judgments in small claims and juvenile matters or orders issued pursuant to section 46b-15 or upon the filing of any motion pursuant to subsection (b) of section 46b-63. Such fee may be waived by the court.

(b) Upon the filing of a motion to open or reargue a judgment in any civil appeal rendered by the Supreme Court or Appellate Court or to reconsider any other civil matter decided in either court, the party filing the motion shall pay a fee of seventy dollars.

Approved June 26, 2003