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Dissemination of Domestic Relations Investigation Reports

1. Application of Rule. This rule applies to cases where the court directs that a written report be prepared by an investigator relating to legal custody, parenting time or visitation issues.

2. Investigator Defined. The term "investigator" includes anyone whom the court directs to make an investigation or evaluation, including a court services officer, mental health professional, CASA volunteer, and a guardian ad litem.

3. Delivery of Report. A copy of the report shall be provided by the investigator to court for dissemination to the attorney of record for each party.

4. . Limitation on Dissemination of Report. Attorneys may generally discuss the contents of the report with their clients, but shall not give a copy of the report to their clients and shall not permit their clients to read or make notes from the report. If the investigator clearly designates a portion or portions of the report for general release, those portions may be read by the client or copied and released to the client. The remaining portions of the report shall remain confidential and shall not be read by or released to the client.

5. Pro Se Litigants; Dissemination of Report. If a party is not represented by an attorney of record, the report shall be made available for review by the pro se litigant, but no copy of the report shall be given to unrepresented parties. The review of the report by a pro se litigant shall be subject to such conditions as the court shall determine.

If a pro se litigant is allowed to read the report, then the represented litigant shall be allowed that same privilege. Portions of the report designated for general release under part 4 above may be copied.

6. Exceptions; Procedure. Pursuant to K.S.A. 23-3210(c), exceptions to this policy may be granted upon a showing of necessity after a written motion and hearing unless the court finds that distribution of the report would be harmful to either party, the child, the investigator, or other witnesses. A copy of the motion and notice of hearing shall be served upon the investigator who prepared the report, who shall be allowed to advise the court regarding the investigator's recommendations as to the risks of providing a written copy of the report.

7. Required Language. The following notice shall be included as part of any order for child custody investigation or other report.

        IT IS BY THE COURT ORDERED that this report is subject to the provisions of K.S.A. 23-3210(c) and Local Rule 23. Attorneys may generally discuss the contents of the report with their clients, but shall not give a copy of the report to their clients and shall not permit their clients to read or make notes from the report. If the investigator clearly designates a portion or portions of the report for general release, those portions may be read by the client or copied and released to the client. The remaining portions of the report shall remain confidential and shall not be read by or released to the client.

        If a party is not represented by an attorney of record, the report shall be made available for review by the unrepresented party, but no copy of the report shall be given to unrepresented parties. The review of the report by an unrepresented party shall be subject to such further conditions as the court shall determine. If an unrepresented party reviews a report the represented party may request the opportunity to review the report, but no copy of the report shall be given to a represented party.

       Failure to comply with the terms of this order by either an attorney or an unrepresented party may be punishable by sanctions for contempt as the Court may determine.