When DHR enters your life they make certain allegations that will affect your relationship with your child. Your ability to be a parent may take a very different role after they enter your life. One thing to remember about a DHR case, whatever the allegation is that brought them into your life must be proven true. Also that allegation must be true at the time they took control of your children AND it must be true at the time you have a trial on the matter. That is why is very important for a parent not to admit to the allegation. Making DHR prove their case is vital to your success. Most cases take about 12 months before they are concluded. During that time the original allegations may not have lasted to the time of trial. If the allegation is not true at the time of trial, then dependency cannot be found. Dependency means at the time of the original allegations and at the time of trial the child was in need of state intervention. If the child is no longer in need of state intervention, the child must be returned and dependency cannot be found. During this time your child may begin to suffer depression and think that DHR involvement is their fault. It is important to get the case moving as quickly as possible so that your children can come home.
Hiring an attorney is vital to protection of your rights to maintain custody of your children. Parental rights are protected rights by our laws and constitution. Any case involving the care and protection of your parental rights should be protected zealously. Attorneys with experience dealing with DHR are familiar with their processes. The first hearing should be a hearing attended by each parent with their attorney. If the parent is unrepresented, they can request a court appointed attorney or request time to hire a private attorney. Any legal representation requests will be taken seriously and each parent will be given an opportunity to get counsel.
When entering into an attorney-client relationship, it is important to ask whether they have experience dealing with DHR. Not all family law lawyers have experience with DHR. DHR is a state entity and they have almost unlimited resources. It is much like a “David and Goliath” scenario. There are multiple resources that can be utilized to make sure your rights are protected.
Our attorneys are experienced with DHR and work tirelessly protecting your rights to be a parent and maintain custody of your children. Now with the new 12 month mandate for each DHR case, time is of the essence. DHR cases routinely would last for 12 to 18 months. With the new standards in place, a parent only has 12 months to get their children back. Call us today for help with DHR (205) 623-1001.