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What To Do If Your Children Are Taken By Child Protective Services – Part II

CPS assistance for parents on Long IslandThe Jurisdictional Hearing

The second trial you are entitled to if your children are seized by Child Protective Services is called a jurisdictional hearing. This gives you a second opportunity to have your children returned to you. If you are innocent of the allegations against you, do not make a deal. Litigate the hearing. If you are successful at the jurisdictional hearing, your children will be returned to you and this ordeal with Child Protective Services will be over. Child Protective Services, even if you are successful at the jurisdictional hearing, may suggest follow up treatments and benefits such as medicaid and food stamps. Do not work with Child Protective Services regarding these matters. Keep them out of your life!

If you are not successful at the jurisdictional trial, a case plan will be presented and you will have to cooperate with it. This means you are in for a long drawn out situation dealing with the Family Court, Child Protective Services and the caseworkers before you will be able to get your children back. Try to finalize the case plan in six months if possible. Do whatever they ask you to do to convince them to give your children back to you. They may want you to take parenting classes, attend therapy, and take other action to convince them and the court to return your children. Do whatever is necessary to comply with their wishes to get your children back.

Unfortunately, if there is a case hearing after 6 months and your children are not returned to you, you need to work on a second 6 month case plan. At the end of the second case plan you can have another hearing to get your children returned to you.

Hearing on the Termination of Parental Rights

The third trial you can have after your children are seized by Child Protective Services is the termination of parental rights hearing. Unfortunately by the time this hearing takes place, your children will have been away from you for close to a year and a half. Take the case to trial at this point again. If you lose the termination of parental rights hearing, you lose your rights to your children. This is your last chance. Should you lose this trial the only thing you can do is to bring an appeal to the Appellate Division. Appeals are costly and can take as long as a year to 18 months to get a decision. It is also difficult to be successful on appeals from termination of parental rights hearings.

father's rights advocates on Long IslandElliot S. Schlissel, Esq., has been representing parents in child abuse cases and child neglect cases for more than 35 years.

About Elliot S. Schlissel

Elliot S. Schlissel, Esq. has spent more that 30 years representing individuals in matrimonial and family law cases.