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Dependency, Neglect and Abuse Lawyer
Florence, Boone County, KY | Covington, Kenton County, KY

You do not have to go to court alone. Let me help you. I am a fighter!

What is dependency, neglect and abuse, and what is the difference between these terms?
"Abused or neglected child" means a child whose health or welfare is harmed or threatened with harm. "Dependent child" means any child, other than an abused or neglected child, who is under improper care that is not due to an intentional act. 

What is the Cabinet?
The Cabinet for Health and Family Services has a subdivision called the Department for Community Based Services (DCBS), and under them is the Permanency and Protection division. They investigate child abuse allegations, and they can either resolve the matter internally or file a court case. They are sometimes referred to as Child Protective Services (CPS).

The Cabinet may talk to your child in school without notifying you, or show up at your door with the sheriff. It is natural to feel intimidated and uncertain of what to do, because this may be your first involvement with the Cabinet. You may not understand your rights and how to protect them.

The Cabinet may ask the court to remove the child from the home. They will come up with a Prevention Plan with steps the parents must take to satisfy the Cabinet.

What is a GAL?
A Guardian ad litem (GAL) is an attorney appointed by the court to represent the child. 

What is CASA?
Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) are volunteers and act as the eyes and ears of the court and an advocate for the child. They get to know the child by talking to others involved in the child's life, filing a written report with the court discussing the child's issues and the volunteer's recommendations, and following up to make sure that court orders and the Cabinet's Prevention Plan are being followed. 

If you want to help ensure that every child has a safe and permanent home, please visit the CASA website. You must be at least 21 years old and pass a background check. You will receive 30-hours of classroom training, 4-hours of court observation, and continuing support from other volunteers and staff. You may have 1 or 2 cases at a time. There is a critical need for volunteers.

What is the role of the County Attorney?
The County Attorney represents the state in these cases. They conduct the hearings much like a prosecutor in a criminal case. The County Attorney also prosecutes criminal cases, but dependency, neglect and abuse cases are civil cases. While you may not go to jail or be fined, you could lose your children for a period of time or permanently. The same set of facts can lead to both civil and criminal liability.

When should I contact a lawyer?
If your child may be taken away, you need immediate legal help before you agree to anything the Cabinet demands, before you answer any questions the sheriff asks, and before the court starts making decisions. If you leave your case up to a court-appointed lawyer or the cheapest lawyer, you may get what you paid for.

What documentation do I need?
Please see my Family Law Checklist for the documentation you should bring to your free initial consultation.

The information on this website is for general information purposes only. Nothing on this site should be taken as legal advice for any individual case or situation. This information is not intended to create, and receipt or viewing does not constitute, an attorney-client relationship.
Aaron Law Offices PLLC
Located at 6900 Houston Road, Suite 12 Florence, KY 41042. View Map
Phone: (859) 525-9800
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