Special Needs Children and Custody
Divorce is a challenging time for everyone involved, including the spouses and their children.  After the divorce or separation, the parents will have to figure out how to move forward with co-parenting along side their former spouse or partner.  The children will also have to adjust to having their parents live in two separate households, and sometimes adjust to new step-parents and step-siblings as well.  During a custody battle, a...
What Is the DCPP’s Least Restrictive Setting Rule?
When the New Jersey Department of Children and Protection and Permanency must intervene with a family, it typically means that the family is not functioning in such a way as to ensure the best interest of the children is always being safeguarded.  Although many people think of the DCPP as an agency whose purpose is to drive a wedge in families, the real mission of the agency is to protect...
How to Keep Children Happy During and After Divorce
Divorce is a chaotic time for all involved.  This includes not only the changes for the spouses, but also the upheaval in the children’s lives.  The spouses can often feel powerless during a divorce, as the process can be lengthy and how the future will look often depends on the decisions of a judge.  Children can experience even stronger feelings of powerlessness, as they are not involved in the decision...
Keep It Out of Court: How Child Welfare Mediation Can Protect the Privacy of Your Family
Protecting Your Privacy   In matters involving child welfare, confidentiality is a top concern. Not only could disclosure of case information damage the parent’s reputation, but it can harm the child as well. Accordingly, New Jersey’s DCPP (formerly DYFS) maintains strict confidentiality policies to protect the identities of both children and parents. Even so, information about substance abuse, mental illness, medical conditions, domestic violence, child fatalities, and criminal cases can...
What Is Endangering Welfare of Children?
When the Offense Is Criminal Most child abuse cases do not result in criminal charges. But CPS is obligated to notify law enforcement of abuse or neglect allegations under certain circumstances. When this occurs, law enforcement then submits a report to the county prosecutor who then decides whether or not to file criminal charges. The burden of proof in criminal cases is higher than in CPS family law cases. This...
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