IF SOCIAL WORKERS TAKE YOUR CHILD, CAN THE COURT DENY YOU ALL VISITATION WITH YOUR CHILD?
The sad answer to this question is YES that in some cases the court can issue an order that you be denied all visitation with your child.
The general rule is that if your child is taken from you by a social worker the court must order visitation “unless doing so would jeopardize the child’s safety”.
Section 362.1 of Welfare and Institutions Code. The law provides that it is important for the parent to maintain contact with their child during a child dependency court matter. However, if the court finds that “visitation is inconsistent with the well-being of the child, or would be detrimental to the child, the juvenile court has the discretion to deny all visitation”.
When a child is taken by social workers out of the only home that they may have known, it is always traumatic to a young child. They may be sleeping for the first time in their life in a strange place with people they do not know. At our law firm, we try very hard to convince the court to return our clients’ children to them. However, while we attempt to reach that goal in the vast majority of cases, we are able to convince the court to allow reasonable visitation between our clients and their children. Unfortunately what is reasonable in many child dependency courts is very little visitation. In some courts, the parents can be limited to one or two short visits (normally of 2 hours in duration). These visits are often in a social worker’s office or are monitored at another location by a social worker.
This limited visitation is far from ideal, but at least the child gets to see their parents to know that they are okay. They can talk to their parents about school, sports, how the family members are doing, and upcoming holidays, but cannot talk about the facts of the case that brought them into the dependency court. The bottom line is that the “contact” continues so that when the children are reunited with their parents the “bond” is not broken. Children are given hope and can remember the good times with their parents when they are visiting with them.
However, in some cases, the court has the power to completely cut off visits between parents and their children. This can occur even before there have been any findings at a trial (called a jurisdictional hearing) made against the parents. How can this be fair? How can this be just?
What Wallin & Klarich Can Do For you or A Loved One Today
When you are facing a case where your child or children have been taken from you by social workers it is important that you know your legal rights immediately. You should contact our law firm for a free phone consultation so we can inform you of what you are about to face as you enter the child dependency court.
Our experienced attorneys have been fighting for parent’s custody rights for 40 years. We know what it takes.
With offices in Orange County, Riverside, San Bernardino, Victorville, West Covina, Torrance, Los Angeles, and San Diego, you can find an experienced Wallin & Klarich criminal defense attorney available near you no matter where you are located.
Contact our offices today at (877) 4-NO-JAIL or (714) 587-4279 for a free, no-obligation phone consultation. We will be there when you call.