Tips and Helpful Information

The Clerk's Office CAN

  • Answer questions about how the court works
  • Give you general information about court rules, practices and procedure
  • Provide you information from your case file and assist you in accessing that information from a public computer workstation
  • Provide court schedules
  • Answer most questions about court deadlines

 

The Clerk's Office CANNOT

  • Tell you whether you should file a case
  • Give you legal advice or an opinion about what will happen if you file your case in this court
  • Tell you what to write in court documents or what to say in court hearings
  • Talk to the judge on your behalf or let you talk to the judge outside of court
  • Compute deadlines in your case
  • Tell you what you should do next in your case
  • Provide you with a copy of an order before the order has been filed in the Clerk's Office
  • The Clerk’s Offices are open to the public between 9:00 a.m., and 4:00 p.m., Monday through Friday, excluding federal holidays.

The Addresses of the Three Seats of Court

Office of the Clerk
United States District Court
915 Lafayette Boulevard
Bridgeport, CT 06604
(203) 579-5861

Office of the Clerk
United States District Court
250 Main Street
Hartford, CT 06103
(860) 240-3200

Office of the Clerk
United States District Court
141 Church Street
New Haven, CT 06510
(203) 773-2140

Other Tips

  1. Read everything you get from the court and the opposing party right away, including the papers you get from the Clerk’s Office when you file your complaint. It is very important that you know what is going on in your case and whether you have deadlines.
  2. Meet every deadline. If you do not know exactly how to do something, try to get help and do your best. It is more important that you turn things in on time than that you do everything perfectly. You can lose your case if you miss your deadlines. If you need more time to do something, ask the court in writing by filing a motion for extension of time as soon as you know that you will need it.
  3. Use your own words and be as clear as possible. You do not need to try to sound like a lawyer. Be specific about the facts that are important to your lawsuit.
  4. Always keep all of your paperwork. Keep copies of everything you send out. When you file papers in the Clerk’s Office bring an extra copy so you can have a file-stamped copy for your records. Know where your papers are so that you can use them when you need them to prove your case.
  5. Have someone else read your papers before you file them. Ask that person if they understand what you wrote. If they did not understand, you need to rewrite your papers and explain yourself more clearly. The judge may not get to hear your explanation in person and may only have your papers to rely on when making decisions about your case.
  6. You are required to diligently prosecute your lawsuit. Unless and until you hire an attorney to represent you, it is your responsibility to do everything necessary to prepare your case for trial. This includes, but is not limited to, responding to discovery requests and motions. It is also your responsibility to try your case in court.
  7. You must keep the court and defendant(s) advised of any change in your address or telephone number. The failure to do so may immediately result in the imposition of sanctions which may include the dismissal of your case.