What is a Petition?
When a case worker with Nevada’s Child Protective Services comes to your home and questions you about your care for your child, it is important to remember that they do not have the authority to charge or prosecute you on criminal charges. You don’t face a criminal trial, and you won’t suffer fines or jail time. The goal of CPS action is to prove neglect or abuse, then identify the best course of action to prevent it from happening again. CPS does this by means of a “petition.” The petition is a request that CPS makes to the court for further action, and the court’s response to it determines what will happen to your custody rights. If you are facing this process, you need Weiner Law Group on your side to do everything possible to show the court that you deserve to continue caring for your child.
Filing the Petition
CPS may not retain your child in protective custody without filing a petition to the court. The petition includes the case worker’s allegations of neglect or abuse on your part. When CPS sends the petition to the court, it will also send you a copy so that you are aware of the claims against you. At this point, you and your lawyer will be able to build your case to disprove the claims.
Responding to the Petition
If you decide to simply admit to the claims or fail to respond to them, the court will assume that you are guilty and will decide on a course of action. This could be something as simple as assigning a case worker to continue meeting with you, but it could be as drastic as terminating your parental rights altogether. However, if you deny the claims, the court will establish another hearing at which your lawyer will argue your case, using evidence and witnesses just as in a criminal trial. With a good lawyer, you stand a good chance of showing the court that there is no reason for CPS to be involved in your family’s life any further.
Why Oppose a Petition?
It might seem easier, at first glance, to admit to the petition’s claims and hope for a light case plan from the court. If you do this, however, you will never know just how CPS got involved in the first place. The only way to find out what evidence your case worker has against you is to force a hearing by denying the charges. Don’t allow CPS to make accusations against your parenting without demanding to know what evidence they have against you. Weiner Law Group is ready to stand up for your rights as a parent and as a citizen. If you are deciding how to respond to a petition, call a CPS attorney from Weiner Law Group at 702-202-0500 or fill out our contact form.