Keeping Your Family Strong--Even Through Divorce

3 Signs That You Should File For An Emergency Child Custody Hearing

by Kristen Wright

Issues regarding child custody can go on for a long time, since they can be rather intense legal battles. In some situations, however, there simply isn't time to wait. Luckily, in some scenarios, you can petition for an emergency child custody hearing, which helps expedite the process so that you can go in front of a judge. These are a few signs that you should talk to a family law attorney about this option.

1. You Believe the Child is Being Abused

If you believe that the child is being abused in any way, whether it be physically, mentally or sexually, it is important to try to do something about it. Child neglect, such as if the child is not being properly cared for, should also not be ignored. Gather up any evidence that you have that the child is being abused, and work with an attorney to file a petition for an emergency custody hearing. This can help ensure that the child is removed from the home and put in a safer situation, and it can even result in the abuser having criminal charges brought up against him or her.

2. The Child is Being Exposed to Substance Abuse

It isn't necessarily an issue if the person who has custody of the child has a drink or two here and there. However, if there is excessive alcohol use going on in the home, if someone in the home is using illegal drugs or if the child is being put in danger due to alcohol -- such as if the person who has custody drinks and drives with the child in the car -- it could be in the best interest of the child to file a petition for an emergency child custody hearing.

3. There's Someone in the Home Who You Don't Trust

You don't just have to worry about the person who has custody of the child -- you also have to pay attention to the others who are in the home or who are regularly exposed to the child, too. For example, if the custodian of the child brings in a roommate and the roommate is a registered sex offender or has a dangerous criminal record, this could be a cause for concern.

As you can see, there are various situations in which a petition can be filed for an emergency child custody hearing. If any of these situations are true, or if you are otherwise concerned about the welfare of a child, it is best to work with a family law attorney to determine what steps can be taken. Contact a lawyer like one from Kalamarides & Lambert for more information.