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Probate and Family Court eFiling: Custody, Support, Parenting Time

Helpful information on eFiling a Complaint for Custody, Support, Parenting Time (209c) in the Probate and Family Court

Table of Contents

Getting Started

Gather and fill out all necessary custody, support, parenting time forms. 

Self-Help Information: 

Court Forms: 

Please note:

  • If you are NOT MARRIED - you must first establish paternity before filing custody, support, parenting time for the child. A judge may establish paternity if one parent files for paternity in court, or by signing a voluntary acknowledgement form  in the hospital at birth (birth certificate), with the City or Town Clerks Office or the Registry Vital Records and Statistics.
  • If you ARE MARRIED and WANT DIVORCE - you can file for custody of your child at the same time. See divorce for more information.
  • If you ARE MARRIED and SEPARATED - you can file for custody of your child and get support at the same time. See separate support for more information.

For additional information and assistance, please visit one of our Probate and Family Court Virtual Registries or refer to your divisions homepage for contact information. 

You can also access the court’s service centers, but not all locations have this option. To talk to a service center online using Zoom, see Accessing Court Service Centers and Law Libraries remotely.

How do I eFile my Custody, Support, Parenting Time forms?

Access the eFiling site to register at eFileMA and click on the "Get Started!" icon. You will need to create an account and include a debit or credit card on file. If you do not have a debit or credit card, you can use your banking information. You will also find self-help tutorials, Frequently Asked Questions, and web training sessions to help you eFile for the first time.

For a brief overview of the eFiling Process in the Probate and Family Court Department, you can go to eFiling in the Probate and Family Court.

Please note: You can still file your Custody, Support, Parenting Time paperwork directly at the courthouse in person or by mailing.

What is the cost to eFile a Complaint for Custody, Support, Parenting Time?

The court filing fee for Custody, Support, Parenting Time $120. In addition to the court filing fee, there is a one-time fee of $22, plus a credit card processing fee (of total amount). 

Before you begin to eFile for Custody, Support, Parenting Time with multiple children, please contact your local Probate and Family Court division to confirm the total fees required. 

 

I want to file for Custody, Support, Parenting Time for multiple children, how would I eFile?

Before you begin to eFile for Custody, Support, Parenting Time with multiple children, please contact your local Probate and Family Court division to confirm the total fees required. 

There must be a complaint and required documents filed for each child. Each complaint and required filings must be filed one at a time, each being given its own filing number. If there are multiple complaints being filed, it is asked that they be submitted into the eFiling system on the same day and time (one right after the other).

The additional complaints will only be accepted by the court if the fees on each separate complaint are accurate. If you are filing an Affidavit of Indigency (please see process below).

For additional information and assistance, please visit one of our Probate and Family Court Virtual Registries or refer to your divisions homepage for contact information. 

 

What if I can’t afford to pay the filing fee?

You can file an Affidavit of Indigency with your filings. You may also need to include the Supplement to the Affidavit of Indigency form. These forms and additional information can be found here: Apply for indigency (waiver of court fees and costs).

What do I use for payment when filing an Affidavit of Indigency with all my other filings?

When you are finished uploading all of the required filings for your Custody, Support, Parenting Time, in the fee section, select “waiver” as your payment option. This will remove all fees associated with the filing and will then show $0. 

Please note: If your Affidavit of Indigency is not approved by the court after your eFiling has been accepted, you may need to pay the court fee of $120 to have you case completed. You will be contacted by the court if fees need to be paid.

What happens after my case has been accepted?

You will receive a summons by mail to your address listed on the complaint. Instructions will be included. 

Can I eFile the Return of Service of my summons when it is completed?

Yes, you can eFile the Return of Service as a subsequent filing under the docket number the court has provided you. There will not be any additional fees to eFile into your existing Custody, Support, Parenting Time case. You also have the option to file in person or by mail.

I have read all of the information on Mass.gov and I still need help with this process. Who can help me?

You will need to contact or visit the local Probate and Family Court you are filing your Cusotdy, Support, Parenting Time in or visit one of our Probate and Family Court Virtual Registries.

You can also access the court’s service centers, but not all locations have this option. To talk to a service center online using Zoom, see Accessing Court Service Centers and Law Libraries remotely.

Are you having a technical issue with the Tyler eFiling website?

You must contact Tyler using the number provided if there are any technical issues within the Tyler website. To contact Tyler: 1-800-297-5377. All procedural questions can still be directed to the court.

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