It’s easy to feel as if the whole system is against you when you are fighting for your child in court. The child welfare system is there to protect your child’s safety and well-being, not just to limit your parental rights. But when that system decides you put your child’s safety at risk, it can turn against you. As a vehement defender of parents’ rights in child welfare cases, I can tell you to not give up just yet. Here are some ways you can defend your rights while in litigation.
You have a right to counsel during the child welfare litigation process. I highly recommend you at least speak with a New Jersey child welfare attorney about your case. Even a simple consultation can help, but you can ensure your rights will be defended if an attorney helps you with your case.
Second, the court cannot take your child away from you or terminate your parental rights without having good cause. The DCP&P will conduct an investigation to gather evidence to submit to the court. You have a right to provide testimony and evidence, too. Take full advantage of this right! You should have an attorney help you do this, but, whatever you do, don’t pass up this opportunity to provide important information.
Third, cooperate when it is reasonable. Comply with any requests the DCP&P makes during the investigation such as developing a safety plan. Work with your caseworkers to create a visitation plan so you can stay involved in your child’s life. Complete all court-ordered steps such as counseling or a substance abuse evaluation. The DCP&P may also ask you to take advantage of certain services. If you disagree with any of these requests, speak with an attorney.
Knowing and understanding your rights and responsibilities is the best tip I can give you for fighting for your child in court. It is easy to be overwhelmed by the child welfare case process in its entirety. You are dealing with both the DCP&P caseworkers and the court all while trying to remain an involved parent while your child is in foster placement. Speak with an attorney about your case if you have questions about your rights or responsibilities.
Do you have a child welfare case in court? If so, Williams Law Group, LLC is here to help you. We can help you do what it takes to fight for your child and your rights. Located in Union, New Jersey, Williams Law Group, LLC provides compassionate and dedicated legal services to Union, Bergen, Essex, Hudson, Morris, Monmouth, and Middlesex counties, and the surrounding areas. Our knowledgeable attorneys handle divorce and family law, child custody, and child abuse/neglect cases. Call our office at (908) 810-1083, email us at email@example.com, or contact us through our confidential online form to schedule a consultation and ultimately get you connected with an experienced New Jersey divorce and child custody attorney.