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Family Law

Family Law, also known as Domestic Relations, includes a number of different types of cases including adoption, child custody and parenting time child support and spousal support, dissolution of marriage (divorce), filiation (paternity), legal separation and restraining orders.

Family Law cases involve making important decisions and often have complex legal issues that are difficult to resolve without an attorney. Because your rights may be substantially affected, it is strongly recommended that you consult with an attorney prior to beginning any legal action.

These are the ways to initiate or respond to a domestic relations case:

  • Your attorney may file electronically using File and Serve
  • You may use Guide and File interactive interview with online File and Serve
  • You may use Guide and File interactive interview and print the documents for review and filing
  • You may print and complete forms from the Oregon Judicial Department forms page and bring them to Room 301 for review and filing
  • You may purchase forms in Room 301 for completion, review and filing

Review times are scheduled as follows: Mondays at 10:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. Check-in by 11:30am.

*Family Abuse Prevention Act (FAPA) Restraining Orders and Emergency Custody Orders (Immediate Danger) may still be reviewed at any time during our normal hours Mon-Fri from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., excluding Holidays. Immediate Dangers can be heard the same day at any time. FAPA’s are heard each day at 2:30 p.m. Must be turned in by 11:00am to be heard the same day.

View Oregon Judicial Department Family Law forms and information.

Start the Guide and File interactive interview. Once you have completed the interview, print the forms and bring them to Room 301 for review by a clerk and filing with the court.

If you are unable to pay the filing fee you may request waiver of the filing fees by completing a written application. Documentation of your income, expenses, and any public assistance will be required. Upon review of your application and documentation your fee may be waived or it may be deferred, to be paid in full before the final judgment is entered.


Adoptions are confidential. Recent changes to Oregon law allow some people access to certain court adoption records without a court order. Others must get a court adoption cases order to access adoption records.

View Oregon Judicial Department Family Law Program information regarding adoption.

The court does not provide forms for use in the adoption process.

Parenting Class & Mediation

Attending the parenting education class is required when children are involved and the case is at issue proceeding towards mediation in the following case types:

  • Annulment or dissolution of marriage
  • Legal separation
  • Petition to establish custody or parenting time (including paternity)
  • Post-judgment litigation involving custody or parenting time

If parents are in agreement or a party defaults attendance is not required.

You are required to attend the following parenting education class unless you have the requirement waived by the court. You will be notified by mail of the date of the class, which takes place on the first floor of the courthouse in the conference room.

Polk County Domestic Relations Mediators:

Kate Groh                                                      Michelle Vlach-Ing (Court Appointed Only)

1132 Edgewater St NW                                 317 Court Street, Suite 203

Salem, Oregon 97304                                   Salem, OR 97301

503-364-6515                                                 503-585-1289                       


Phil Groh                                                      Edgar Diaz                                                    

1132 Edgewater St NW                                PO Box 8265

Salem, Oregon 97304                                  Salem, OR 97303

503-364-6515                                                503-765-5794                      


Stefyni Allen

PO BOX 3032

Salem, OR 97302









Parenting Plan

This parenting plan is the standard used by the Polk County Circuit Court. If this plan is not satisfactory for your situation, you must submit another plan for the court to approve.

Polk Standard Parenting Time Schedule

Restraining Orders

If you are in need of a restraining order please review the following links and information regarding the requirements and forms:

Family Abuse Prevention Act
Elderly Persons and Persons with Disabilities Abuse Prevention Act
Sexual Abuse Protective Order

All of these forms are available in Room 301.

Completed restraining order forms must be received by 11:00 a.m. in order to be considered by a judge at 1:00 p.m. the same business day. If forms are filed after 11:00 a.m. the matter will be heard the next business day at 1:00 p.m. The petitioner will be given information for CARDV – Center against Rape and Domestic Violence for safety resources.

While court staff can provide general information about court procedures, ORS 9.160 prohibits court staff from giving legal advice. If you need legal advice, please contact an attorney.