I need legal advice fom someone with experience with child services

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Barb, Jan 28, 2010.

  1. Barb
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    Barb Carpe Scrotum

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    Sorry about the long thread title.

    This is my situation: My nephew, 15 years old, is a ward of the state. I found out today that he ran away from the facility he was housed in. In upstate NY January, is living somewhere out on the streets. His parents are fuck ups and had more chances than they ever deserved to be decent parents. His mother is in rehab and his father is in prison. My daughter was letting him stay with her, but the case worker slipped a warrant under her door and told her that if he is found there SHE will be arrested. This effectively drove a child from the only stable family member who was willing to care for him in order for the state to flush him out into the open.

    I want to take custody of him. The state is treating this fifteen year old boy as if HE was a problem to be solved instead of a child, and every adult that was supposed to care for him abdicated responsibility for doing so. In spite of this, the mother retains custody, albeit not physical, that is to say she still has rights to him, and he reamins in the system. The parents can't or won't, and the state did a PISS poor job of trying to keep my nephew safe and in school. I'm fairly sure that if I get a shot at the mom she'll agree to sign away her rights. I would never restrict access, but I would insist on full custody. I'll be on the phone with the case worker tomorrow, and in front of the judge soon after that. I need to know what to say to obtain custody. I would appreciate any advice offered. He's a great kid. He thinks he's alone in the world. I'll break the law if I have to to bring him home, but I want to keep him here when I do.
     
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  2. Barb
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    Barb Carpe Scrotum

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    Ten minutes and this is "old?!"
     
  3. 007
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    007 Charter Member Supporting Member

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    I think you stumped everybody Barb. I doubt anyone here has ever been in that situation. I sure haven't.

    In any case, good luck.
     
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  4. Luissa
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    Luissa Annoying Customer Supporting Member

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    Provides lots of documentation of what has gone on, and provide everything you can that will show how well you can take care of him. I would also have the name of the school he will attend, and have a plan on how you will help him. I would also get some referral letters from friends and your boss/prof.
     
  5. Barb
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    Barb Carpe Scrotum

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    Thank you. My daughter informed me of what had gone on over the past week this morning on the way to drop her off at college. She said he's a ward of the state, but it could be the court. Last I knew he was on his way back to school (there was a mishap over a planned home visit with my brother in law's (hes the one in jail) wife (she's not the addict, but she couldn't keep custody because the addict wasn't in rehab at the time. Its a MESS). The school canceled at the last minute, and the uncle (her brother) picked him up anyway. My daughter has been in court about this (not in trouble, but to see about her cousin) and the judge was angry at the people at the school. If I get the same judge, this could work in my nephew's favor. Since he went back, they won't let him attend classes or play basketball. The case worker is treating him like a felon instead of a child, and near as I can tell, the school is treating him like a problem to be solved instead of a child who has problems that need to be solved. I think its the state, because the court doesn't seem pleased about any of this. I can't stand that my nephew is living like a 42 year old vagrant instead of a fifteen year old kid. This is upstate NY. Its cold outside. My daughter is trying to contact him, and I'm hoping to have him here before tomorrow is over. Legally or otherwise. I'm not about to let him freeze to death while I wait for permission to take family in.
     
  6. Barb
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    Barb Carpe Scrotum

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    I can do all that. He'd have his own room (my daughter is in college) and he'd go to the same school as my son, who's seventeen. Both my kids lived, the one in college they've already seen, neither has ever run away, I've had no contact with child services befor...hell, neither one of them ever had an accident or broke a bone. My boss would write me a letter, probably profs too. Thanks Luissa!
     
    Last edited: Jan 28, 2010
  7. Luissa
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    Luissa Annoying Customer Supporting Member

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    My mom's ex was an ass and didn't like the fact she got so much out of him in the divorce, he took her to court every two years to get custody of my brothers. My mom never lost. :D
    And if you have a Law school at your college, you can usually get free legal service from the students. I know here they have a program where students will help you, don't think they go to court with you, but they do provide help.
    Good Luck with everything!
     
  8. Terry
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    Terry Shut the $%$ Up!

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    I'm not an attorney but it would be wise to get one yourself to represent you. You will need to show the court that you have a stable environment both financially and emotionally. Usually from what I heard once the State are aware that you have an attorney to seek guardianship then tend to back down and work with you. If a person is willing to pay the bucks for an attorney to help out a child this shows the Authorities that you are serious.

    In the mean time if he is out on the street and you care so much for him then perhaps you should find him a hotel room, apt or somewhere he can stay. I would imagine you can petition the court for intimidate address in this situation for the good of the child welfare.

    You really should get an attorney.
     
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  9. B L Zeebub
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    B L Zeebub Active Member

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    Barb I don't wish to appear rude, but get a lawyer.
     
  10. RodISHI
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    RodISHI Gold Member

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    You have gotten the best advice get an attorney to help you. I took in my nephew for a summer when he was 15 and living on the streets in California. It will be a tough job for you if he is already messed up. I wish you the best with him.
     
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