CPS took her Friday and placed her with her mother (who voluntarily hasn't had custody for 6yrs). The mother is in contact with us and is asking for help with clothes, shoes, etc. because she has no income. She is also telling me she is in fear of going to jail because she owes back child support. The preliminary hearing was today and she didn't show up, she didn't have gas money. I am concerned that my niece won't be properly cared for because of the mother's lack of means. CPS was going to place her with us when she was removed but, at the last minute they realized the mother never lost her rights. My husband and I are more than willing and able to provide for her. Should I call the worker and tell her of my concerns? Is there anything I can do?
Family Law Attorney
It is difficult to answer your question because in your first sentence you mention that mom voluntarily gave up custody. Then, toward the end, you claim that mom never lost her rights. Operating under the assumption that mom never lost her rights, she is entitled to custody. You can try contacting CPS with your concerns, but unless the child's well-being is in jeopardy, I doubt that they will remove the child from her care. Just because a parent is struggling financially does not mean that it would be in a child's best interests to remove the child from home.
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I would suggest talking to the social worker assigned to your niece's case. Let him/her know about your concerns about the mother and about your willingness (and ability) to care for the child. If/when the mother is unable to do what she is supposed to, you will be right there to take over.