Witnessing the abuse or neglect of a minor family member presents you with the leverage you need to protect them. In these circumstances, it is possible for you take action to stop these events from continuing. The first step is to contact an attorney who manages child custody cases.
Temporary Custody of the Child
Obtaining custody of a child who isn’t yours biologically is a slippery slope. However, if you are a grandparent or close family member, you could take the legal steps necessary to protect them from abuse. While family services can launch an investigation, this may take a longer period of time and leave this child in eminent danger. You should contact a Child Custody Attorney first.
Filing a Petition
At any time, that evidence is submitted to a judge which shows a child was neglected or abused, the judge can grant temporary custody to another family member. This allows the judge to order an investigation of the home through family services. This also provides you enough time to build a case to prevent this child from returning to these dangerous conditions.
During this process, the findings of the home investigation are presented to the judge. A child advocate lawyer is assigned to the child to acquire his or her testimony and secure evidence to support your claim. In most circumstances, the findings should indicate that the biological parent possesses a drug or alcohol problem. They should also show evidence of the conditions that led to the neglect or abuse.
What You Should Know
The court could grant child custody initially for a period of one year. After this time, the court provides the biological parents the opportunity to prove that these conditions no longer exist. If the findings indicated drug or alcohol abuse, he or she must complete a program and prove sobriety for a duration of no less than one year.
Acquiring custody to protect a loved one requires excessive evidence. In severe cases, it is necessary to take steps to terminate the parental rights of the biological parents. What you must understand is that you must prove your claim and present evidence later that these conditions haven’t changed. If you need to take action to protect a minor family member, contact a Child Custody Attorney immediately.
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