The masters conduct settlement-oriented conferences in equitable division of marital property, alimony modification, child custody and in certain matrimonial cases which require management of special relief and discovery problems. The masters conduct both settlement conferences and record hearings in cases where the grounds for divorce or annulment are contested.
The settlement program helps parties reach agreements disposing of disputes without enduring the expense and emotional distress associated with formal litigation. The settlement program assists the Court by reducing and limiting the formal litigation caseload, and by providing recommendations from staff with extensive knowledge and experience in family law to assist in disposition of cases that do not settle.
The masters also review family court pleadings before orders or rules are entered or hearings set, and review all divorce files prior to entry of decree. All family court hearings except for support and protection from abuse are scheduled by the masters office. Consolidation of these functions in the Family Masters office helps ensure uniform compliance with procedural rules of court, identification of cases which may require special management, and identification of trends, such as an increase in a certain type of case or certain type of problem.
8:30 am through 5:00 pm
Monday through Friday
Judith A. Bretz, Esq., Chief, Master in Family Law
Bucks County Justice Center
100 N. Main Street, Level B1
Doylestown, PA 18901
Phone 215 348-6844
Fax 215 348-6792