How Ohio courts can help children in dangerPosted August 2010. Filed under Children
An aunt comes to visit her 3 year-old niece and finds her wandering through her father’s apartment with dad and friends passed out amid liquor bottles and drug paraphernalia. It’s not the first time.
Grandparents discover that their son, who has a warrant out for his arrest, has fled their home, taking his 18-month old child out of state.
How to rescue these endangered children? Get Children’s Services involved? Those overtaxed wheels turn slowly and can leave loving families feeling shut out and helpless.
There’s a better answer. A private action in abuse, neglect and dependency in Juvenile Court, asking for an order for immediate temporary custody, brings fast action to help a child in danger.
Not only is the initial action for temporary custody handled by the court quickly –often in a few hours—but the whole matter is generally resolved within about four months, on a timetable imposed by law. All that time, the child is safe with familiar caregivers. And the parent is notified and brought into the process so that their legal rights are protected.
Private court action on behalf of a child in danger should not be undertaken lightly. It can’t be driven by a strong difference of opinion about childrearing or simple disapproval of a parent. It’s a way to rescue a child, not a weapon in a battle.
Make sure to consult an attorney well-versed in the legal understanding of abused, neglected and endangered children, who is also experienced in pursuing this kind of legal action.