This is the next post in my series discussing what Las Vegas fathers can expect from the legal process of asking the court for a change of custody due to an emergency. My last post provided an overview of topics that I will be discussing in more detail. In this post I will be briefly going over various emergencies and explaining the importance of expedient action.
There are a number of reasons why a father may believe it is imperative for his child to be removed from the custody of a mother. Common examples may include that the mother is abusing drugs, that an adult in the mother’s household is abusing the child, that the father has become aware of weapons in the home that are not properly secured, that the house is unsanitary, or that the children have reported to the father that a problem exists. In many instances, the father and mother are not on good terms and the father may have suspicions about his children’s living arrangement without actual proof. While this may feel like a frustrating spot, there are actions that the father can take.
In the most serious of emergencies, the father may need to call the police. Times when this may be appropriate is if a father’s child calls from the mother’s home and reports danger. Another example may be if the father confronts the mother about a troubling issue, and the mother becomes combative. In most cases, contacting the police for intervention is unnecessary.
The most appropriate step is often to contact Child Protective Services, followed by one’s attorney. When calling CPS, a worker will take one’s information, and ask questions regarding why a father believes that his children may be in danger. If the information is believed to warrant an investigation, often a worker will be sent to the mother’s home to further investigate and ask questions. If it is determined that an emergency situation is indeed present, then CPS has the power to remove the children from the mother’s home.
It is important for a father to contact a family law attorney to assist in coordinating the children’s removal from the mother’s home, to the father’s custody, if that is what may happen. If the father already has joint custody of the children, this is generally not a difficult process. If the father has visitation, or the mother has sole custody, one’s attorney can be of assistance to help the father gain temporary custody. If the father does not have a living environment that supports the children, one’s attorney can help the father coordinate with CPS and help place the children with appropriate family. Once a dangerous situation has been verified, one’s attorney may file an emergency motion with the Court to gain temporary custody as well.
If you are a father and suspect that something is amiss in the home of your children’s mother, it is important to take action as soon as possible. The court will question a father’s judgement, if it is believed that the father knew a situation was unsafe, but chose to do nothing about it. Contact my office today to speak with a child custody attorney who assists fathers.