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Ely, Counselor at Law
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 99428
Experience:  Private practice with focus on family, criminal, PI, consumer protection, and business consultation.
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I have a 2 yr old girl and we are investigating neglect min

Customer Question

I have a 2 yr old girl and we are investigating for suspicious neglect for 5 min while I picked up bread at the store, she was asleep in the carseat buckled in, the car was running with air conditioning and locked, it has been four months signed a family safety plan, then never heard anything back, then we met again to check up on me and her after months of waiting, she said they were gonna close the case, but now my caseworker quit so I got assigned a new person and she is going to refer me to fbss...because I have depression and anxiety but I told her I'm already in a mental health program and on am on a wait list, I just want them to close the case...can I refuse fbss and will they still close it if I refuse? this has been 4 months of bs and multiple satisfied meetings, what can I do to speed this up and be removed from their claws digging into my back??!!
Submitted: 4 months ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  Ely replied 4 months ago.

Hello and welcome to JustAnswer. Please note: This is general information for educational purposes only and is not legal advice. No specific course of action is proposed herein, and no attorney-client relationship or privilege is formed by speaking to an expert on this site. By continuing, you confirm that you understand and agree to these terms.

I am sorry to hear about this situation, Katie.

CPS does not have any specific powers itself. All CPS has is a mandate from the state to act on behalf of the child in a Court of law, i.e. as an interested party. So they can file to take custody of the child, but of course, only if there is a good-enough reason.

Normally, CPS has the Court's ear, but not always. It is not uncommon for the Court to deny CPS.

CPS also works very questionably. It is not unusual for them to use scare tactics, questionable diplomacy, and even outright lying in some cases to get what they want. They will even ask you to sign something that you may not fully understand, only for that to turn out to be a document releasing custody (that they then file with the court). So they can be ruthless.

But again, all they are - are a party before the Court with an interest in the child. Just like you.

What CPS normally does is get you to agree to a parenting plan. If you fulfill it, they leave you alone. If you do not, then CPS may file in court to ask the Judge to force you to fulfill it, or in cases of serious neglect/abuse, to try to take custody of the child.

Even if one signed that parenting plan, one may break this informal agreement at any time. But of course if one does, then CPS may try to go back to court and state "see, she is endangering the child..."

At this time, if CPS is asking too much or is exaggerating the issue, you may wish to send a certified letter stating that the matter is over and that you are not endangering or abusing the child and that CPS has has enough proof of this. And that, one will cease cooperation. CPS may go to court (there is a risk), or they may simply close the file.

It is best to use an attorney to send such a letter.

I hope this helps and clarifies. Please use the SEND or REPLY button to keep chatting, or please RATE when finished. You may always ask follow ups at no charge after rating. Kindly rate my answer as one of TOP THREE FACES/STARS and then SUBMIT, as this is how experts get credit for our time. Rating my answer the bottom two faces/stars (or failing to submit the rating) does not give me credit and reflects poorly on me, even if my answer is correct. I work very hard to formulate an informative and honest answer for you; please reciprocate my good faith with a positive rating.

Expert:  Ely replied 4 months ago.
Hello again. This is a courtesy check in to see if you needed anything else in regards ***** ***** question because you never responded or replied positively. I am simply touching base. Let me know. Thanks!
Customer: replied 4 months ago.
thanks for the answer, I don't have money to hire a lawyer and my case is supposedlying about to be closed just wondering how I can speed up the process without passing them off or drawing it out longer..Do you recommend doing the FBSS? If I decline what will happen, I'm just tired of being trapped, I was told they were gonna close this month's ago....
Expert:  Ely replied 4 months ago.
You are most welcome.
There is no way to "speed up" the process, I am afraid. If by the FBSS you mean the plan that they have for you, then this is not a bad idea if you feel that you can do it. That should get them off your back. If you decline, CPS may go to Court to force the issue.
Gentle Reminder: Please, use REPLY or SEND button to keep chatting, or RATE POSITIVELY and SUBMIT your rating when we are finished. You may always ask follow ups at no charge after rating.

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