There are many circumstances that may justify an emergency change in custody of a child. An emergency custody order is generally used to help a parent or other guardian remove a child from a dangerous or potentially dangerous situation. The court can be petitioned to allow another party to take custody of the child for their protection. Here’s what you should know about emergency custody orders.
Circumstances under which emergency custody orders may be issued include:
- Allegations of physical or sexual abuse
- Threats of physical or sexual abuse
- Abandonment or neglect of children
- Custody was awarded to a convicted sex offender
- Allegations of substance abuse which may endanger the children
The court must conduct a formal hearing before an emergency custody order can be issued, and all parties must be notified. Often a temporary protection order is issued before the hearing.
Filing a Petition
If you are filing a petition for an emergency custody order, you must demonstrate a cause for the change to occur. Your petition should include descriptions of specific actions or threats that place the child at risk for harm.
Evidence may include:
- Police reports of the other parent or member of the household
- Arrest records of the other parent or member of the household
- Records of prior relevant convictions of the other parent or member of the household
- Results of prior protection order proceedings
- Records from Child Protective Services agencies
- Medical and/or dental records for the child
- Records from a child psychologist about their evaluation of the child
It is critical to support your allegations with evidence. If you do not, your allegations may be considered false, which can make it more difficult to gain custody of a child in danger. An emergency protection order is only temporary, so you must prepare to make the orders permanent by petitioning the original court that issued custody. Once the court issues a new, permanent order, the temporary one will expire. Your child custody attorney can help you make the preparations necessary and petition the court to make these changes lasting.
At the Balisle Family Law Legal Counsel, S.C., we are passionate about helping families find the legal solutions they need. Our caring, experienced team is here to answer your questions and be by your side for every step of the custody process. Our Madison child custody lawyers can help you ensure that your child is safe and their needs are met.