What has worked for me

Are you going through an investigation now? Tell your story and get feedback here.

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What has worked for me

Postby justamom32 » Mon Jun 30, 2008 5:42 pm

First I want to say that this website has been an absolute godsend! I applaud whomever began this mission to help educate families who are dealing with CPS.

My ordeal with CPS began at the beginning of this year. I was initially ignorant when it came to dealing with CPS. I was of the mind-set that, "I have nothing to hide, so I will cooperate." Now I know better.

I will briefly give you a background of my story......

CPS was called on allegations of "neglect" regarding my 8 year old daughter. The allegations were basically that she was "dirty, wore soiled clothing, and had chronic head-lice." All of these allegations were found to be unsubstantiated during the initial investigation. This case was closed right away. (my child was not neglected, she is a NORMAL 8 year old child who gets messy very easily and often. She has contracted head lice twice from her second grade classroom.).....
It was no secret that it was her teacher who called CPS and made the allegations. So I confronted the teacher. I did this in a very open and nice manner. I simply told her that the case was never even opened, and that if she felt that there was a problem with my child she could contact me at anytime. .....The next day she called CPS again, this time on allegations of "educational neglect." She based these allegations on the fact that my daughter had 5 unexcused absences, and that I had home-schooled her during the first grade. These allegations were true, I did home-school my child during the first grade, and she did in fact have 5 unexcused absences. HOWEVER, the intake worker for CPS wanted to do another home investigation. I felt that it was not necessary and met him at the door with a copy of my childs attendance record and I explained to him that there was obviously a communication problem, and possibly a personality conflict between myself and the teacher. He left and I heard nothing back for a month. At that time I was served with papers to attend a court hearing on ALL allegations. EVEN the ones that were found to be "Unsubstantiated" during the first investigation. .....I did the whole thing, went to court, obtained an attorney, attended an "family team meeting with CPS to develop a case plan etc... Meanwhile my child remained in my custody and my lawyer had the case set for trial. I fully cooperated with CPS. I allowed the caseworker into my home once a week, I went to the meeting, and I went to court. The only thing I did NOT do was SIGN ANYTHING.

During the so-called "family plan meeting" they are supposed to develop a case plan for the family. This meeting is more like a sales pitch. They present you with all of these different services and pretend as if they are trying to "help" you. All they need is you to agree and sign. Now I am generally the type of person who always believed that "you catch more flies with honey." But I found myself spreading out an awful lot of damn honey and did not catch ONE fly! So I gave them as much hell as they gave me. ...For instance; during the family plan meeting..I made them re-write the case plan 5 times. It took them all day, and when it came time to sign I refused. ......The social worker came out weekly, only to be ignored, while we went about our daily routine at home, making her uncomfortable at the least....Each visit she would ask us about a different service...family counseling, a psych evaluation for my daughter, etc...All of which I refused. I would tell her that if it became court ordered then I would hire my OWN therapist, tutor, doctor...(whatever it was that she was trying to push) But I flat let them know from the beginning that I would NOT be accepting any services from them what-so-ever. I also made it clear that the CPS worker was not to discuss my child with any of the school staff without me being present. (She actually violated this by calling my childs teacher) .....The school Social Worker who does not know my child nor our family decided to take it upon herself to "represent" the school. She released school records to CPS (which she compiled herself...of course failing to mention one positive thing about my child or my family) She released these records without my written consent, and made several mentions concerning a terminal illness that I have. .....I did not tell CPS about my illness because I felt it was none of their business. It had nothing to do with the case, or my child. I was also in fear that they may try to say that as my illness progresses it will affect my ability to care for my child...I did however make mention of my illness to a couple of staff members at my childs school...just to let them know what was going on at home and to let me or my husband know if they see any "unusual changes" in my little girls behavior due to my illness. I was afraid that my illness would cause her stress. Little did I know that they would try to use my illness against me. .....

The school social worker made it her business to attend each court date, write up lengthy "reports" on my childs academic progress, and basically put her nose where it did not belong. The only satisfaction I got throughout this whole ordeal is knowing that she made unnecessary trips to court each time, costing her time, money and her little "reports" that were pretty much disregarded by the court....I just kept refusing to sign anything, and documented EVERYTHING. On the day we were set for trial, CPS decided that they wanted to "dismiss" the case, IF I would agree to work with them on a volunteer basis but ONLY until my daughter completed a 3 week summer school program. Which is now over. I got another letter to attend a "family team meeting" tomorrow (July 1, 2008) I assume that this meeting is to close out the case for good.

My advice to anyone is DO NOT ALLOW CPS to investigate you in the first place. When a social worker first knocks on your door tell him or her to "get lost!" Tell them to get a warrant. I am a Criminal Justice Major....I can tell you that it takes three things for a judge to sign a warrant....EVIDENCE, OATH, and WHAT THEY ARE LOOKING FOR.....A phone call is NOT sufficient evidence, CPS nor a police officer can provide an oath without first investigating so therefore, they have NO proof or even probable cause....All they have is a "phone call" this alone, is not enough for a judge to legally sign a warrant. ...Unless there is some heavy accusations of abuse by an authority, they can do nothing. .....The funny thing is that I KNEW this, yet I felt that if I cooperated, all would be good. They do not care what you have to say, they do not listen to the parents. STAND YOUR GROUND with these people. DO NOT act passive and kiss their A**es.....it gets you no where. DO NOT SIGN ANYTHING....Once they see that they are not going to make any money off of you they will begin to back off. BE FIRM, and if you have to be a BITCH. Make them really work hard on your case...They always say "I am just doing my job" Well MAKE them do it...call them out on anything that they do wrong, research your states laws, DOCUMENT everything.

CPS believes that most families they deal with are uneducated, and they use "fear-tactics" to get you to sign over your parental rights. Show them that you are not ignorant, uneducated, and that you know your rights. You are not alone! Keep fighting and don't let them get the best of you.

I hope that all goes well during my final meeting tomorrow....I am just glad that this site was here to help guide me thru this situation.


Postby MaggieC » Mon Jun 30, 2008 6:16 pm

I agree with everything you have just said.
Best of luck to you tomorrow. Thank God that the criminal courts actually follow the Constitution. And the appeal process IN COURT not in a "service plan" meeting, still follow law.

Due Process
Process of Service
Rules of Evidence

These are our rights as Americans.
Again, best of luck to you and stay strong.

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Postby good dad » Tue Jul 01, 2008 8:37 am

I hope all goes well for you today.

My advice is my opinion and not legal advice
A bad lawyer is worse then no lawyer and bad advice is worse then no advice....

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Postby Trisha G » Tue Jul 01, 2008 9:28 pm

Just one question for you, if you've had previous cases with them can they use that to get a warrant?

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Postby yellernboyz » Tue Jul 01, 2008 10:58 pm

not a warrant, but defenitely they will use it against you like you are a habitual offender.

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Postby Trisha G » Wed Jul 02, 2008 9:21 am

I only let them in Monday because they were already trying to get a warrant. I knew they wouldn't find anything anyway.

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Postby katgotsteve » Wed Jul 02, 2008 10:19 am

how did the meeting go? i am just wondering, i know how cps can try to go around a judge and still force you into things.

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