Parents, grandparents, aunts and uncles, friends and family members often know someone that has become involved with the complex administration of Indiana Department of Child Services (“DCS”).
Sometimes it is as simple as DCS making an administrative decision to substantiate or unsubstantiate child abuse or neglect. If you are not a parent of the child, you may not realize DCS is making this determination. But it is important that you know your rights to be represented and to appeal any determination DCS makes. These determinations may affect you in the future working with children in any setting.
Other times DCS is more involved with a family either through a program called an Informal Adjustment, which is a contract entered between parents and the Department of Child Services, or through a CHINS proceeding. “CHINS” stands for Child in Need of Services. In a CHINS proceeding, DCS petitions the Court to engage in services with your family and potentially remove your children from your home.
It is important that you engage with an experienced attorney at the outset of involvement with DCS. An experienced attorney can guide you through the maze of laws and internal policies that govern DCS and effect thousands of children in our state each year.
Whether you are a parent, grandparent, family friend, child care worker, or interested party, it is important to obtain competent representation from the beginning of any case involving the Indiana Department of Child Services. May Oberfell Lorber has an experienced team of family law attorneys capable of assisting clients through the complex issues associated with DCS proceedings.
The content of this article is for information purposes only, and neither contains nor should be considered legal advice.
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