Referee Hearings

Referee Hearings

Referee Decisions
 
A referee is a person who holds hearings, examines witnesses, and makes recommendations to a judge.  The chief judge of a circuit court may appoint a referee to hear testimony and arguments on any domestic relations issue, except spousal support (alimony).
 
A referee hearing differs from a hearing before a judge. A referee’s decision is only a recommendation to the judge. A referee’s recommendation will become a court order only if neither party files an objection within specific time limits or (if a party does object) the court holds a hearing and the judge then signs an order approving the referee’s recommendation.  A party who disagrees with a referee’s recommendation may request a new (de novo) hearing before the judge. The objection and a request for a hearing must be in writing and be filed with the circuit court clerk with 21 days after the referee’s recommendation is mailed or delivered.
 
You should consult an attorney for more information on how to object to a referee’s recommendation and request a hearing before a judge.