Text message reminders helped divorce, parenting cases

CONCORD, N.H. (AP) New Hampshire's judicial branch says that its pilot program offering text message reminders to people involved in a divorce or parenting case reduced the failure-to-appear rate by 40% in a six-month period.

The circuit court launched the program last summer. People who chose to provide a cellphone number received three simple text messages reminding them of their mediation day and time: one each at seven days, three days, and one day before the event.

The judicial branch hopes to expand the availability of text message reminders to other case types within the circuit court, as well as to superior court cases. Criminal cases are under consideration.

(Copyright 2019 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)