Cases of Juvenile Dependency
When the Department of Children's and Family Services is informed that a child has been abused, neglected, mistreated, or put at risk, a juvenile dependency case ensues. The Department will file a petition with the court, requesting that child become a dependent of the court. In such cases, the parents or caretakers of the child should seek competent legal counsel and representation.
Understanding Your Rights
You have the right to have a lawyer represent you in court in a juvenile dependency case. The county may also have a lawyer representing the social worker involved in your case. The court may also appoint a lawyer for your child to see that his or her interests are protected. If your child was removed from your home, the court will decide in the initial hearing whether or not the child may be returned to you until further hearings. Your child usually may stay with relatives if the court decides that he or she may not return home.
During a juvenile dependency case, you have the right to a trial, the right to receive a report on your case made by the social worker involved, and the right to a case plan to be presented to the court. The case plan will delineate the actions you will take to have your child returned to you.
Importance of Qualified Legal Representation
If you are the parent or an interested party in a juvenile dependency case, the experience legal team at our firm may be able to assist you. Our firm focuses on family law issues exclusively and we are thoroughly familiar with California laws and the court system involved with juvenile dependency cases. It is in your best interests to seek competent legal representation in such a case to protect your rights and interests and to ensure that the legal proceedings are done in a fair and just manner.