How to Get Custody of a Child in an Arizona Dependency Case
The State of Arizona through the Arizona Department of Child Safety may take custody of a child if, after their investigation, they determine a child is a dependent child.
A parent may either voluntarily give custody of his or her child to the state as a dependent child or the State of Arizona may obtain emergency custody of the child or obtain custody after filing a dependency petition with the juvenile court in the county in which the child resides with a parent.
A child is considered to be a dependent child if evidence suggests that the child’s parents are guilty of abusing the child or neglecting the child by not provide for the child’s basic needs.
Once a child is taken into custody, the state has several options regarding placement of that child with a family member or placement of the child in a foster home. Regardless of where the children are placed, the parents of the child are offered services to determine if they can be rehabilitated to the extent necessary to allow them to regain custody of their children.
If those services are not successful, the state may proceed to termination the parents’ parental rights at which time the children would be eligible to be adopted by the foster parents or another family seeking to adopt a child.
A Relative Obtaining Custody of a Child in a Dependency Case in Arizona
If you have a relative whose children are the subject of a dependency case in Arizona, you may want to seek custody of the children. Many times a child’s grandparent or aunt or uncle steps in to obtain custody of the children.
There are several things you can do to obtain custody of your relative’s children in a dependency case in Arizona.
During the case, you can request to take temporary physical custody of the child. You can also ask to be appointed as the children’s temporary and, eventually, permanent guardian. Lastly, you may seek to adopt the child in the event the parents’ rights are terminated in the dependency case.
You will be required to undergo a home study to ensure you are fit to care for the children. You should also be aware that relatives of a child in a dependency case have a preference for placement in Arizona dependency case.
Call the experienced Scottsdale and Phoenix juvenile child custody attorneys at (480)305-8300 at Hildebrand Law, PC to learn more about adopting a child in Arizona.
Chris Hildebrand wrote this article about child custody of dependent children in Arizona to ensure everyone has access to information about child custody laws in Arizona. Chris is a family law attorney at Hildebrand Law, PC. He has over 24 years of Arizona family law experience and has received multiple awards, including US News and World Report “Top Arizona Divorce Attorneys”, Phoenix Magazine “Top Divorce Law Firms”, and Arizona Foothills Magazine “Best of the Valley” award. He believes the policies and procedures he uses to get his clients through a child custody case should all be guided by the principles of honesty, integrity, and actually caring about what his clients are going through.