Connecticut Seal

General Assembly


Substitute Bill No. 6690

    January Session, 2013




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

Section 1. (NEW) (Effective July 1, 2013) (a) In any prosecution under section 53-247 of the general statutes, or any proceeding in the civil or criminal session of the Superior Court regarding the welfare or custody of an animal that was the subject of a violation of section 53-247 of the general statutes, the court may order, or counsel for any party may request, that a separate advocate be appointed to represent the interests of the animal, in which case the court shall appoint an advocate from a list provided by the Commissioner of Agriculture pursuant to subsection (c) of this section.

(b) The advocate shall perform an independent investigation of the case and may present at any hearing information pertinent to the court's determination of the best interests of the animal. The advocate shall be subject to cross-examination upon the request of counsel for any party. The advocate shall not be required to be an attorney-at-law but shall be knowledgeable about the needs and protection of animals and relevant court procedures. In performing an investigation under this section, the advocate shall consider any prior arrangements made for the animal, including, but not limited to, the existence of a trust to provide for the care of the animal created under section 45a-489a of the general statutes, a restraining order issued under section 46b-15 of the general statutes that contains a provision to protect the animal, or a protective order issued under section 46b-38c of the general statutes that contains a provision to protect the animal.

(c) The Commissioner of Agriculture shall maintain a list of persons with expertise in animal welfare or legal advocacy to serve on a voluntary basis as advocates under this section. Such list may include students and faculty of law schools and attorneys.

This act shall take effect as follows and shall amend the following sections:

Section 1

July 1, 2013

New section


Joint Favorable Subst.



Joint Favorable