A non offending parent in CPS case should take part in it and ensure that CPS serves a child’s best interests in the event of abuse or neglect. Although a non-offending parent is considered innocent, they should not assume that since child protective services (CPS) can’t easily turn against them if the investigators establish that they also played a role in neglecting or abusing the child.
This article will talk about things a non offending parent should do during a CPS case to ensure they are on the safer side of the law and, if possible, granted full custody of the child. If CPS alleges that your partner has abused or neglected your child, this article is a good resource for you since it will guide you on how you can navigate the entire process.
List of Best Practices for a Non Offending Parent in a Cps Case
As a non offending parent, you shouldn’t stay unbothered just because CPS is only investigating your partner. Things might easily change and put you on the offending side after the caseworker completes investigations. You should therefore involve yourself and provide the needed help when appropriate.
You can apply several tips during a CPS case as a non offending parent to ensure it does more good than harm to you and your children. Below are tips that can help you smoothly address the CPS case.
– Establish the Possible Risks of CPS to a Non Offending Parent
CPS is a federal entity and may pose significant risks to non-offending parents. Ensure you research the possible ways a CPS case may affect you. Consider accessing information sources in the juvenile court system that pertain to CPS cases.
Once you’ve established the risks, you’ll make adequate preparations to put yourself on the safer side of the law. For example, you should know when child protective services may take your child away after establishing that your partner neglected or abused the child. You should also know when you can request the judge to grant custody of the child.
Another possible risk you should read about is when the case can turn against you. Since you have similar parental responsibilities to your offending partner, you should know the implications of accusations against them. Lastly, it would help if you researched how one is supposed to deal with caseworkers and investigators during the CPS case to ensure you don’t abuse them, leading to serious legal consequences.
– Keep In Mind That CPS Is Not Your Friend
Despite being friendly and promising to help, a caseworker or investigator is not always your friend. You should be careful with the information you let out because it could land you in trouble with the court. Therefore, you should stay put and ensure your conversation with the caseworker remains professional and only provide the information needed.
Just because CPS is investigating your abusive partner doesn’t mean that you are on the safer side of the equation. During the investigation, CPS may also establish that you have a case to answer regarding the neglect or abuse of your child. Even when the investigator says he’s there to help you, it’s not always the case.
Remember that this individual is trained to do their work and will use any friendly mechanism to obtain every piece of information they want from you. Also, being keen with the information you give can prevent CPS from taking away your child.
– Know When To Assert Your Rights
As a non-offending parent, you should know when to defend your rights during a CPS case. As a basic rule, you should always remain silent since anything you say could be used against you. When someone approaches you claiming to be a CPS representative, you should never allow them into your home unless they have a search warrant.
Even when they give threats, you should inform them that the law allows you to prevent any government official from entering your house unless they have a warrant. Additionally, cooperating with CPS is not mandatory unless the court has instructed you. Since they’re no legal accusations against you, you have no obligation to be submissive or work with the investigator.
The investigator should first seek consent from the court to have you take part in the investigations. During the CPS case, you also have the right not to participate in any related programs unless called upon. It would help if you always strived to ensure that no one violated your rights during the entire CPS case. Provided it’s not you that neglected or abused the child, the law should protect you by ensuring your parental rights are respected.
– Read Through the CPS Report
You should make it your concern to read through the CPS report and know the accusations against your partner. You should not entirely rely on what the caseworker says because they are also humans and may not clearly outline issues presented in the report. You should determine whether the allegations will likely affect you as the non offending parent.
Your role as the non offending parent is to evaluate whether the report falsely accused your partner. Reading through the report could also be of significant help when you want to defend yourself before the court and distance yourself from any allegations against you. Also, not every allegation availed in the CPS report is true.
CPS programs do not always work in favor of every person since they may put you in more trouble. However, if you have the finer details of the CPS report, you might find ways to save the situation. This could help prevent your child from being taken away or being subjected to special CPS programs.
– Report Abuse/Neglect to the Police Even When CPS Has Taken Over
Reporting your partner’s violence or abuse even after CPS has taken over may work to your advantage. CPS and the police always work hand-in-hand, and the latter may easily take over once they establish criminal offenses in the case. As such, you should not fear doing it since you’ll not face any legal implications.
Once the police take over, they’ll only deal with your partner and make an effort to find evidence against them. They may even use you as part of the witness in the abuse case. This will work in your favor since only CPS deals with the offending and non offending parent during a child abuse/neglect case.
Using the police or the criminal justice system will also work in favor of your child since they’ll not be allowed to remain in contact with the perpetrator following the accusations made against them. This is unlike in CPS, where the offending parent might still have contact with the child.
– Stay Informed and Prepare in Time For Meetings With CPS Caseworkers
You should always keep track of the case and know where the proceedings have reached. Staying informed means that you’ve made an effort to know further details about the case and how it may affect you as a non-offending parent.
It won’t look good if you’re asked something about the case and are not in a position to give the required information. When the caseworker wants to meet you, you should have them inform you in advance. This gives you room to make adequate preparations on the questions to answer and what to expect from the caseworker or investigator.
You should also know how to carry yourself during the meetup to ensure everything goes smoothly. Only answer what the investigator asks and be careful not to provide information that might have you prosecuted.
Why Should a Non Offending Parent Take Part in a CPS Case?
The first reason a non offending parent should participate in a CPS case is for the child’s benefit. Since the case pertains to abuse of the child by the other parent, a non offending parent should take part in the case and have custody of the child. This could prevent CPS from taking away the child once they prove that the non offending parent can take over the parenting duties.
A second reason to participate in a CPS case is to help clarify that you never contributed in any way to the abuse of your child by the other parent. Sometimes, when investigating the abusive parent, CPS may also link you to the abuse. With your involvement, however, you’ll be able to prove to the court that you played your part in addressing the child’s needs.
You must also depict yourself as a responsible parent who can serve the child’s best interests if the other party has failed. Another reason to participate in a CPS case is to understand the allegations against your partner and evaluate their truthfulness. If CPS finds your partner guilty of abuse, you can also report them to the police and have the criminal justice system handle the case.
A non offending parent should establish the possible risks of not giving their total commitment to a CPS case. If CPS notes that you’re unbothered with the case, things might easily turn against you and have the abused child taken away from both parents because of negligence. This article has taught you that a non offending parent should fully take part in a CPS case, and in summary, you’ve learned that:
- A non offending parent has a role to play during CPS to ensure that it addresses the child’s best interests.
- Even when a non offending parent is innocent, the caseworker or investigators may find substantial evidence that they also neglected the child.
- When working with investigators or caseworkers in a CPS case, a non offending parent should not be too friendly with them.
- A non offending parent should always take time to read the CPS report and not just rely on what the caseworker says.
- Even when not accused of anything, participating in a CPS case can guarantee that CPS will not take the child away from you.
If you don’t know how to go about a CPS case once someone has reported your partner for abuse, you should consider talking to a family law attorney and receive legal guidance.
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