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Law Educator, Esq.
Law Educator, Esq., Lawyer
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 118723
Experience:  Experienced attorney: Family law, Estate Law, SS Law etc.
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Middle of custody battle. Mother sends 4 yr old back with

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Middle of custody battle. Mother sends 4 yr old back with bruises. Took picture again and this one on his right butt cheek. Broke the skin. Said Mommy spanked me really hard. He's a good little boy. We put him in time out. Never lay a hand on him. Dad has shared custody. I'm paternal grandmother. One week with Mom, One week w/ Dad and share holidays. Mother unstable! Called DCF on her one time and she claimed bite marks in day care. It was a grab and her fingernail imprint. So this is third time back with bruises. Other times bad sunburn, took pics also. How does a judge look at this? If we call DCF now they will think we're just trying to gain leverage in the custody battle. If we don't call them and photos are date stamped, we're scared something worse will happen. Each time child has said, Mommy grabbed him, Mommy spanked him. What should we do??? Help!
Thank you for your question. I look forward to working with you to provide you the information you are seeking.

You need to contact DCF IMMEDIATELY since there is evidence of the abuse and you need to do it while the visibility of the bruises are still present. Failure to report abuse immediately could lead to DCF claiming that you participated in covering up the abuse and punishing you as well as the abuser. FL DCF makes these claims all the time and goes after both parents.

The judge will look at her as being an unfit parent is how he will look at her if the child comes back from visits with her with marks and bruises consistently. DCF will not think you are seeking leverage (as incompetent and negligent as FL DCF social workers are, you have evidence of actual injury and a duty to report it, but you have the option of taking the child to a doctor with your pictures for examination and let the doctor report it as they too are a mandatory reporter).

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