Juvenile Court Matters / Child Advocacy / Grandparent Rights

Custody and Visitation

Child Custody Are you a non-custodial parent, grandparent, relative, or other interested party who is seeking custody or visitation with a child? Grandparents (and certain other people) do have rights under the law! However, you must actively seek to have those rights granted in a court of law. I can help you understand the circumstances that must exist for you to take Legal Custody of a child from a parent or to request visitation. I will advise you if you have a valid case depending on those circumstances, and if you do, then I can help you determine which court has jurisdiction and file the proper paperwork.

Children Services Matters

Having children removed from parental custody is one of the most heart-wrenching things that can happen to either a parent or a child. It is scary and confusing. Children Services involvement can feel intrusive and frustrating. Often parents are required to participate in court or community programs and services that add to the stress they are already feeling in order to have their children returned to them. Children are often placed in homes where they know no one. This can be a traumatic experience for all involved.

CASA/Guardian ad Litem

Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) or Guardians ad Litem represent children who are removed from parental care. Their job is to investigate the situation of the child, parents, and other people in the child’s life, determine the best interests of the child, and make recommendations regarding care and custody to the court. Since minor children are automatically considered indigent, they are automatically entitled to a court-appointed advocate or guardian ad litem under certain circumstances.

What can I do for you if your children are removed from your care?

  • Explain the law and courtroom procedures to you.
  • Represent you at emergency hearings on short notice, and at all other hearings.
  • Work with Children Services caseworkers on your behalf to determine the fastest way for you to regain custody of your children.
  • Refer you to community resources to help you with employment, transportation, financial assistance, or other needs.

What can I do for children removed from their parents’ care?

  • Explain the law and courtroom procedures to them, dependent on age and maturity.
  • Visit them to determine if their needs are being met.
  • Represent their wishes and their best interests at hearings.
  • Make recommendations to the court for necessary services and for placement or custody.
  • Be a consistent and caring voice for that child for the duration of the case.