This is the next post in my series discussing what a Las Vegas parent needs to know if an allegation of abuse is made to CPS regarding their child. My previous post explained the importance of following the case plan one’s social worker creates with regards to getting one’s children back. In this post I will address the issue of whether or not a parent should hire the services of an attorney if CPS has become involved with their family.
The intention of Child Protective Services is to protect children from dangerous situations, and to address and rehabilitate issues that are going on inside of families. Unfortunately, the system is not perfect; social workers are not always properly trained and may have large caseloads that are difficult to manage, employees turn over often, and policies are not always followed properly. When mistakes are made, or a social worker abuses or misuses their power, it can be devastating to a family. It is often necessary to hire an attorney to represent and defend the parent in court.
If a parent is being criminally charged with abuse or neglect then retaining an attorney is suggested. A criminal defense attorney may be necessary to defend a parent from misdemeanor or criminal charges; it is also important that a parent not incriminate themselves in the civil court. Parents are often confused as to the difference between criminal and civil charges in these such cases; if a parent is not sure whether or not they are being criminally charged then it is important to speak with an attorney right away.
Even if a parent is not being criminally charged with abuse or neglect they may still wish to hire an attorney depending on the circumstances. While there are many wonderful social workers in the world, as with any other profession, there are bad eggs as well. If a parent is concerned that their social worker is discriminating against them, lying to the court, attempting to bully or harass them, abuse their power, or simply ill trained and incompetent, then it may be in the best interest of the family to hire an attorney. At the end of the day one’s social worker holds the power to separate a family and keep children in foster care. If a parent feels as if the system is not treating them fairly then it is important to contact an attorney immediately for a consultation. If you live in the Las Vegas area, and are concerned about your treatment of Child Protective Services, contact my office today.