Guidelines for Attorneys for Parents Who have lost their children to CPS


GUIDELINES FOR ATTORNEYS

This is a guideline for parents who have attorneys who represent them in their fights with CPS – The attorneys should be doing this even if they are public defenders. They owe it to their clients to do the best job possible. They are sworn to represent their client. IF your attorney is not doing this especially if he/she is a Public Defender complain to their supervisor. They get paid by the State to defend- make them earn their money. In Jackson County Georgia this is not happening.

SUMMARY OF GUIDELINES FOR ATTORNEYS

RESPONSIBILITIES OF ALL ATTORNEYS

1. Responsibilities Prior to Representing a Client in a Dependency Case

Prior to any involvement in a dependency case, all attorneys should be familiar with the following:

a. The causes of and available treatment for child abuse and neglect.

b. Child development principles, particularly the importance of attachment and bonding and the effects of parental separation on young children.

c. The child welfare and family preservation services available in the community and the problems the services are designed to address. Absent specific documentation as to why they are not needed, at least the following services should be available:

1. family preservation services;
2. generic family-based services;
3. cash payments for emergency needs/ ongoing financial support;
4. services to meet basic needs such as food, clothing, and housing;
5. services to address specific problems:

respite care
child care evaluation and treatment for substance abuse/ chemical addiction
parenting training
life skills training/ household management; and
6. facilitative services such as visitation and transportation.

d. The structure and function of the child welfare agency and court systems, services for which the agency will routinely pay, and services for which the agency either cannot or will not pay.

e. Experts who can consult with attorneys and/ or testify on the reasonableness of agency efforts to maintain the child in the home.

2. Responsibilities After Undertaking Representation of a Client in a Dependency Case

After accepting a case, an attorney should:

a. Interview the client.
Interview the client to determine what involvement, if any, the agency had with the parent or child prior to child’s removal from the home, and what services the client believes would have been helpful in avoiding the placement.

b. Investigate the child’s removal from the home.
Become familiar with the circumstances under which the child was taken from the

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parent’s custody. Attorneys should know the history of the family’s prior contacts with the agency, who made the decision to remove the child, and the basis for removal, including:

1. the specific behavior or circumstances that put the child at risk of harm and
justified removal;

2. how family problems are causing or contributing to the risk; and

3. services the agency has provided and will provide for the family to alleviate or diminish the risk and what alternatives, including in-home services and placement with relatives, were considered prior to removal.

c. Investigate reunification efforts.
If the child has been removed from the home, determine what contacts the agency has had with the parents and the child since the removal, and what efforts it has made to reunify the family.

d. Investigate efforts to achieve permanency for children.
Attorneys for both agencies and children should ensure that agencies make reasonable efforts to timely place children in permanent placements, including:

1. ensuring permanency hearings are timely held;

2. identifying appropriate cases for concurrent planning;

3. timely filing petitions to terminate parental rights; and

4. making specific recruitment efforts to find adoptive homes for children, including timely adoption studies of both the child and potential adoptive family, and the prompt pursuit of adoption assistance funds for special needs children.

e. Investigate involvement of outside agencies.
Determine whether other agencies have been involved in the case and interview representatives of these agencies.

f. Interview the agency social worker and review the agency’s file.
Make arrangements with the agency attorney to talk directly with the social work-er involved in the case and review the agency’s file to ensure it has complied with its own procedures and regulations.

ADDITIONAL RESPONSIBILITIES OF ATTORNEYS FOR PARENTS OR CHILDREN

1. Determine the Client s Goals and Concerns About Placement
Explain to the client the possible results of the shelter care hearing and the psychological and legal consequences of removing the child from the home, and elicit the client’s view of the placement and ultimate goals at the hearing.

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2. Interview the Agency Social Worker
Communicate with the agency social worker and review agency records to obtain more information about the case, including services provided or requested by the family prior to the child’s removal and the social worker s plan for reunification (services to be provided, visitation arrangements, and projected date of child’s return) .

3. Determine the child’s Ability to Return Home
By asking the client and consulting with experts, determine what services should be provided to allow the child to return home. Determine whether these services are available in the community and can be provided by the agency.

4. Require the Agency to Present Evidence of Reasonable Efforts
Require the agency to present evidence on the record of all efforts made or attempted to keep the child in the home.

5. Ensure that Witnesses attend the Hearing
Ensure that individuals are subpoenaed and attend the hearing who have had co tact with the family and can testify either to the efforts the agency made to keep child in the home, or the services that should have been provided but were not.

6. Present Evidence on Reasonable Efforts
Present evidence on the reasonableness or unreasonableness of the agency’s efforts, and on alternative efforts that could have been made.

7. Obtain Court Orders for Specific Services
Where possible, request that the court order that specific services, including visitation, be provided.

8. Ensure that Settlement of the Case Is Incorporated in the Case Plan

15 Responses to Guidelines for Attorneys for Parents Who have lost their children to CPS

  1. Exactly where might I get this particular Blog?

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  2. had enough says:

    luzern county cys in pa does none of they above…………

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  3. I’m fighting to get my children home but it hard .Thay tell me not to get marry n not to have friends Thay have sit in there car by my house .Thay black. Mail me if I don’t sign paper Thay will put my children up for a adopt I ever hit my children I love them more then life I would go throw hi water for my children I got married to a army soilder and Thay said he can t be round my children that have use my disable to keep my children I what to help a friend who had no heat for his children the only heat was gas oven I ask a family member to watch them she say ok but she left my children by them self the cope show up at my friend house n Thay ask me were my children were I say with family she left them by them self n call the cop on me I was not arrest for it I keep my children in dec 17 03 Thay took my children from me but thay every chEck on my children the next day Thay wait intill dec 17 to take them I need help to find a lawyer to suit children n youth servies

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  4. I’m fighting to get my children home but it hard .Thay tell me not to get marry n not to have friends Thay have sit in there car by my house .Thay black. Mail me if I don’t sign paper Thay will put my children up for a adopt I ever hit my children I love them more then life I would go throw hi water for my children I got married to a army soilder and Thay said he can t be round my children that have use my disable to keep my children I what to help a friend who had no heat for his children the only heat was gas oven I ask a family member to watch them she say ok but she left my children by them self the cope show up at my friend house n Thay ask me were my children were I say with family she left them by them self n call the cop on me I was not arrest for it I keep my children in dec 17 03 Thay took my children from me but thay every chEck on my children the next day Thay wait intill dec 17 to take them I need help to find a lawyer

    Like

  5. Tired Of Taking Bullshit says:

    With the current state of afairs concerning removal of children, from Loving Homes and families.it has become a national tragedy. More often than not cps agents do irreversible harm to the children. In most cases children are placed in more danger with foster families than they were in there former situation. I had to face the unfortunate truth about this when CPS removed my grandchildren from my daughters home. The kids missed 8 days in a school year,The wonderfull CPS Agents removed them to foster care. My daughter is middle
    class and had some car trouble and was unable to get the kids to school for a few days. CPS
    Charged her with educational neglect, removed my grandkids from a very loving home,loving parents,and grandparents. WE live in jefferson county KY, a commonwealth state which I now equate with communist Russia. The Government gets bolder by the day, in their infinite wisdom about just what is best for our children. I only have one question for all the parents of
    this Injustice. When in the hell are we going to mutiny against these corrupt practices? I know
    there are thousands of cases of the Government overstepping their bounds. They are corrupt,abusive, hatred, sexual abuse, injured in foster care, etc etc etc. Its time to take the government down a couple of notches, and regain our self respect. Its high time that we take a stand, and return parental rights. We need to bond together and form organizations to reverse these bullshit practices the government is shoving down our throats. The assholes in charge surely cant jail us all if we are resolute and one. So if you agree with what I’ve said
    we need to get this organized and start pushing back, If we dont its going to get continually
    worse. If you are of the same frame of mind I am please contact me and anyone else you know in a similar situation. LETS ORGANIZE and get our loved ones home.

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    • D. D. says:

      Hi, Tired of Taking B. S. I appreciate your open candor about what happended to your daughter. I am sorry to hear about what happened to her. I went through a similar, most unfortunate situation at the hands of Child Protective Services, First Families Network, Fleet and Families Service Center, and the Department of Children and Families. My ex-husband (a LCDR in the Navy, currently) used every agency he could contact to allege false allegations of abuse and have my children taken from me because I met someone new and refuse to go back to him; meanwhile, he met someone at the same time (although he was still trying to get me back). He stopped short of validating his claims by failing to take the children to receive medical care for the child abuse he alleged that my boyfriend and I committed on my children! My soon-to-be 14-year old daughter assisted him with the false allegation charges and I don’t want anything at all to do with her. Feel free to e-mail me at ddisaqt@yahoo.com. I am of the same frame of mind; the courts need to stop employing being used for “judicial stalking.” I had a former friend say that the divorce may go well, but it is the person who uses the children first. I can only leave a reply for you because I have no more information. I will be more vigilant in keeping up with checking my e-mails. Thank you for sharing your story. I’m onboard with you. Please let me know if I can be of further future assistance to you. Have a great day and a good week.

      Like

    • Zelda Tackett says:

      our rights were violated over n over by our greenup co court system and cps.im in ..greenup ky.606-388-4390 .looking for atty to sue..my baby was taken over a false pos drug test.im on meds.I dudnt see results..test went in trash..I begged fir test to be sent to lab…they said no..cussed me calling me names took my baby that night.I went to hospital had drug test done.was neg..hosp sent off to lab .was neg..I had hair test was neg…..now its been 6 months.I need atty to sue .to get my baby…..any out there to stand up to them greenup ky..606-388-4390…

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    • MONICA NIXON AND EVERETT SPEARS SR. says:

      MY CHILDREN WERE TAKEN SIMILAR LIKE YOUR DAUGHTER BUT WHILE I WAS IN THE PROCESS OF FIGHTING FOR MY CHILDREN, MY YOUNGEST SON WHO IS ONLY TWO YEARS OLD WAS PHYSICALLY ABUSED MORE THAN THREE TIMES BY CPS FOSTER PARENTS/HOMES. MY BABY WAS BURNT BY THESES FOSTER PARENTS TWO DIFFERENT TIMES ON HIS ARM AND LEG. CPS SAID IT WAS ACCIDENT AND REFUSED TO REMOVE MY BABY FROM THE FOSTER HOME. MY BABY IS STILL IN THE FOSTER HOME. I FOUGHT TO THE BEST OF MY ABILITY AND WITH ALL MY HEART AND SOUL, I LOVE ALL MY CHILDREN AND I WOULD NEVER IN MY LIFE HURT MY CHILDREN. BUT CPS HAS LET THESES PEOPLE BURN AND SCAR MY BABY BOY FOR A LIFETIME. TODAY AND EVERYDAY I CRY AND WORRY ABOUT MY BABY BOY. PLEASE GOD DONT LET THEM HURT HIM ANYMORE AND PLEASE KEEP HIM SAFE AND ALIVE… SO HOPEFUL I MAY SEE MY BABY BOY ONE DAY IN THE FUTURE…AMEN… I LOVE AND MISS YOU EVERETT JR. I WISH I COULD SHOW THE WORLD THE PHOTOS OF MY BABY BOYS BURNS!!

      Like

  6. Just so you know, one of your side links is being re-directed to an adult sex finder- The link that says Another Site for Education of Parents under the heading CORRUPTION IN CHILD PROTECTIVE SERVICES.. Also, I put a link to this page on http://www.donnellyjustice.me
    Thanks for all this great information.

    Like

  7. Rena says:

    I am Rena, mother of 9. years i’ve sufford without representation and still will I stand for my defence . I will not stand down until my children are returned. I am my best defence and .teacher that I would not harm myself in anyway . The. Heart.

    .

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  8. 3rm2014 says:

    Hello, I have to submit to drug testing for cps I have failed my first two tests which were both hair n urine test now of course at the beginning i would give a dirty test, also as long as they do a hair test I’m gonna always come out dirty even if i am clean so my attorney brought that up in court the last time so the judge agreed to having only take a urine test from now on well this last time i went to test they did both again and I’m positive i was clean for a urine test but the lab called me back and gave me the results to only my hair test which of course came out dirty but i never got my results for my urine test is this gonna count against me in court?

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  9. 3rm2014 says:

    When i got my kids took from me i also lost my afdc and my home. I am now homeless and have no income i don’t know what to do but i do know i need help who can i go to for help? If i ask cps to help me get a place i can call hime again would they help me?

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  10. Felecia Lowery says:

    My granddaughter was wrongfully taken from my daughter in law 08/24/2014 because she fell, the cps agents have been deceptive, and basically made up a case, we have verification that the allegations are false and intend to provide them in our placement hearing tomorrow, there has to be something done about the abuse of power being, while children that are safe and have a tight nit family are being taken real child abusers are doing what they do. I propose a petition be filed and we stand together and demand transparency throughout the process of determining if a child is to be removed, these people went so far as to file false reports to the courts in order to remove my grandchild from the aunt that passed background and home study the day after passing. I retired from the state of Arizona DES, and have always believed in the system wanting what’s best for the children, wow have I learned the hard way how wrong I was. Count me in, I can be contacted at flowerybusmail@gmail.com

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Julie McGregor says:

    my grandchildren were taken by cps for false accusations. My grandson was taken in August of 2014 and my granddaughter in April of this year, they took her right from the hospital. my daughter has been doing everything they ask and they still won’t return them. We are not going to give up until my grand kids are home. i don’t understand how cps can get away with this.

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  12. Deirdre says:

    ACTUALLY THIS QUESTION IS PERTAINING TO A YOUNG LADY WHO HAS HAD HER 2 CHILDREN TAKEN AND SHE IS TRYING TO GET THEM BACK, SHE NEEDS OUTSIDE COUNSEL BECAUSE AS FAR AS I CAN SEE THE ATTORNEY APPOINTED YO HER GOES AGAINST HER AND SEEMS TO HELP VIOLATE THIS YOUNG LADY RIGHTS, QUESTION IS WHERE CAN SHE FIND AN ATTORNEY THAT IS NOT AFRAID TO GO AGAINST CONTRA COSTA COUNTY?

    Like

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