Every state has laws in place to protect children. These include, but are not limited to abuse or parental neglect, parental kidnapping, or the sudden incapacity or death of one or both parents. Under any emergency circumstances, courts may step in, issue orders of custody to be certain someone is going to care for the child during a temporary or long-term period.
Local and State Laws Apply to an Emergency Custody Order
The Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement Act (UCCJEA), sets forth laws that govern child custody enforcement, as well as jurisdiction (which means which court has the authority to issue the order). It was adopted by all states, except for the state of Massachusetts. The UCCJEA was made to discourage interstate kidnapping by a non-custodial parent. Prior to the Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement Act, it was typical for non-custodial parents to, without consent or permission, take their children across state lines, as well as ask courts out of state to grant custody orders.
Under the Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement Act, parents only can file for custody within the state in which their child has resided for the last 6 months. However, there are certain provisions which handle issues on emergency custody. For instance, if you must flee your home state due to your child’s welfare being threatened by the other parent, because of neglect or abuse, the new state might use its emergency jurisdictional authority in order to issue an order for temporary custody until it (or home state court) is able to find a solution that is more permanent.
The court within the county in which the child resides usually has local jurisdiction in most matters for emergency custody. It is possible to seek an emergency custody order from the court in your area. The court inside the county in which a child resides usually has local jurisdiction within many matters of emergency custody. If your child is in danger from his/her other parent, you may visit the county courthouse in your area and ask for emergency temporary custody. You might or might not need to appear before the judge, depending upon the laws of your county. The court might place your youngster with you on a temporary basis and might not need the other parent’s appearance as it issues an emergency order for temporary custody. But, judges typically schedule complete court hearings so they can determine orders for permanent custody, and they take place fairly quickly after awarding temporary orders; therefore, both parents have a chance to present their part of the story to the judge.
In addition, emergency custody does not only apply to parents. If any adult has knowledge that a child being abused or neglected by an adult, regardless of whether that adult is a parent, grandparent, relative, family friend, or guardian, report that situation to the local social services or child welfare department.
Talk with an attorney
If you have a desire to get the child placed with you on a short-term basis, you will have to file a temporary custody motion with the family court in your jurisdiction. Removing children from their caregivers or parents is a complex matter, so you’d likely have to talk to an attorney with expertise in custody matters. As children are placed into temporary protective custody, typically, the courts work toward repairing the issues within the family home to reunify kids with their parents. It might include, but is not limited to, sending parents to substance or alcohol abuse rehab, ordering continual drug testing and screenings, parenting courses, and anger management.
When there are circumstances that endanger a custody agreement or your child, there is little time to hesitate. Emergency custody orders and emergency hearings allow you to act quickly to protect your youngster.
About Planta & Satin Law
Attorneys’ Bill Planta and Wendy Satin practice Family Law and Criminal Defense Law. Together they bring a wealth of trial experience coupled with calm, straightforward approaches and keen legal acumen to Planta Satin Law. Mr. Planta and Ms. Satin are regarded as two of the best lawyers in the State of Maryland.
Mr. Planta and Ms. Satin bring their vast trial experience and empirical knowledge to the table, whether the job is big, or small. All cases are “big” to the person at risk, or experiencing the breakdown of their family, and they deserve to have someone with a thorough and realistic grasp of the law, and judicial system, helping them in their time of need.
For more information on emergency child custody in Maryland contact Planta & Satin Law located in the Washington, DC metro area, serving clients in Maryland and the District of Columbia, at 877.279.6700 or visit our website: www.plantasatinlaw.com.