When a child is accused of committing a crime, their academic career and future can be negatively impacted. As a parent, it is important to have a basic understanding of the youth justice system in Connecticut in the event that your child is involved in a crime. If your child has been sent to juvenile court in Connecticut, contact one of our attorneys at (203) 221-3100.

Transfer From Juvenile to Adult Court

Children who are 15 years or older and are charged with a felony may have their case transferred from juvenile to adult court. If the case is transferred to the criminal docket, the court can still return the case to the juvenile matters docket any time before a verdict is decided or guilty plea is entered. If the child’s case is not transferred back, they will be tried and sentenced as if they are an 18 year-old. There are two ways for a transfer to happen:

Automatic Transfer

If a child between the ages of 15 and 18 is charged with a capital felony, a class A felony, or a class B felony, their case will automatically be transferred to the criminal docket of the Superior Court. The child’s attorney can appear with the child in court, but cannot try to argue or file for a motion against the transfer. At the court date following the transfer, the child will be arraigned and a motion to transfer the case may be filed (if they are charged with a class B felony or other violation stated within Conn. Gen. Stat. § 46b-127(a)(2)).

Hearing First

Some violations under Conn. Gen. Stat. § 46b-127(a)(2) require the court to have a hearing before a transfer can occur. In these cases, a transfer cannot be ordered unless the court finds that the child committed the offense after they turned 15, there is probable cause to show that they likely committed the crime, and it would not serve the best interest of the child and the public if the case were to stay in the juvenile matters docket. The court will look at the child’s prior offenses, the seriousness of their offenses, evidence of mental illness and intellectual disability, and the availability of services that meet the needs of the child to make their determination. Transfer hearings can take place for cases involving Class C, D, or E felonies that are unclassified.


Maya Murphy P.C. has proudly been included in the 2024 Edition of Best Law Firms®, ranked among the top firms in the nation. In addition, Managing Partner Joseph C. Maya has been selected to The Best Lawyers in America® 2024 for his work in Employment Law and Education Law in Connecticut. Recognition in Best Lawyers® is awarded to firms and attorneys who demonstrate excellence in the industry and is widely regarded by both clients and legal professionals as a significant honor.

Our firm in Westport, Connecticut serves clients with legal assistance all over the state, including the towns of Ansonia, Beacon Falls, Bethany, Bethel, Branford, Bridgeport, Brookfield, Cheshire, Danbury, Darien, Derby, East Haven, Easton, Fairfield, Greenwich, Guilford, Hamden, Madison, Meriden, Middlebury, Milford, Monroe, Naugatuck, New Canaan, New Fairfield, New Haven, Newton, North Branford, North Haven, Norwalk, Orange, Oxford, Prospect, Redding, Ridgefield, Seymour, Shelton, Sherman, Southbury, Stamford, Stratford, Trumbull, Wallingford, Waterbury, West Haven, Weston, Westport, Wilton, and Woodbridge. In addition to assisting clients in Connecticut, our firm handles education law matters in New York as well.

If you have any questions or would like to speak to an attorney about a legal matter, please contact Joseph C. Maya and the other experienced attorneys at Maya Murphy, P.C. at (203) 221-3100 or to schedule a free initial consultation today.