Protecting Minor Family Members with a Family Lawyer

by | Feb 16, 2016 | Lawyers

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Minnesota families have the right to report any wrongdoing by parents or any family members. When the presence of abuse or neglect is obvious, these individuals must take steps to bring the child into a safe environment. A family lawyer helps these families protect minor children through enforcing the law.

Reporting Abuse or Neglect

The first step for acquiring custody of an endangered family member is to report the abuse or neglect. There are two ways to accomplish this goal. The individual could contact child protective services and provide information as well as their name. Once the report is received, a caseworker is assigned to investigate the allegations, which is done by conducting a home study to determine if the child’s needs are being met and if there is the presence of abuse.

Secondly, the family member who wishes to report these conditions could hire an attorney and schedule a temporary custody hearing. If they can provide proof of extraordinary circumstances, the judge may grant them temporary custody. When this occurs, the parents of the child must provide evidence that these conditions no longer apply during the hearing. If they fail, the petitioning family member gains custody of the child.

When Sexual Abuse Occurs

When sexual abuse allegations are reported, child protective services must evaluate the child. This requires a medical doctor to examine the child to determine what type of sexual abuse occurred. This examination is also done to collect physical evidence from the victim.

Next, a child psychiatrist evaluates the mental state of the child. They ask them questions to determine if the allegations are substantiated. All evidence is evaluated to make a final determination.

Taking Custody of the Child

A family member may take custody of the child if they are in danger; however, this individual must approach the court of social services immediately. If they fail to follow protocol, the biological parent could file kidnapping charges against them.

In Minnesota, measures are taken to protect endangered children. These measures can be initiated by family members other than the parents. To acquire custody of a child in these conditions, the petitioning family member must possess evidence to support their claim. To protect an endangered child today, contact a family lawyer by visiting today.

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