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How can I file a complaint about CPS taking my children based on a false report!?!

Stockton, CA |

The judge in the Juvenile Dependency court ruled that the sexual allegations against my husband made by my 14 year old daughter to be true! We are at a lost because I know this didn't happen, my daughter said she was angry at all of us and me saying I couldn't take it anymore and was going to give her up. She even told her attorney and tried to tell the judge it was not true. It has been 8 months since all 6 of my children have been in foster care. They are saying I need to leave my husband and never allow him around my kids to get my kids or I will loose them. TRUST, I am in no way saying that I can't and won't, but I also know the allegation is not true and that they used a false statement to find jurisdiction. My daughter never cooperated and they never investigated past her statements.

Just another quick note. One of my children was dismissed from the case as her dad came and got her. They had us do a visitation agreement which the judge accepted. But, he never wanted full custody, not that he is not wanting to, but he wants her home with me as things were before. Can we just go to child support court and he give me back custody or is that something we would have to go back to Dependency Court for even though that child was dismissed from the case...

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Attorney answers 3

Best Answer

A Juvenile Dependency Judge in Juvenile Dependency Court has found an allegation true in a Petition that your husband made some sexual advance on your 14 year old daughter. Once an allegation is found true in a California Juvenile Dependency proceeding - it is up to the attorneys on the case to decide whether to file a Writ with the Court of Appeals asking the court to review the ruling of the lower court. If a writ is not filed, you have very limited - if any - recourse but to live with the verbiage of the Petition and move forward with your lives.

If services were offered - complete the services. If there is new information or a change of circumstances, your attorney can file a "Modification of Court Order" under Welfare and Institution code section 388, asking for a change in the current court order. You can ask for services, different services, different visitation or placement, or even to consider relatives for placement. In order to succeed on such a motion you must have a "change of circumstances or new evidence" AND you must show "why it is in the best interest of the child or children to change the current order of the court."

Juvenile Dependency cases are complex and require attorneys with substantial experience in this area of law. A huge problem with the area of law is that most attorneys are court appointed and have very very heavy case loads. They are great attorneys. They just have time to triage the cases they think they can make a difference in. Your job as a client of a court appointed attorney is to get the facts straight the first time and get the evidence to your attorney clearly and in a timely fashion.

There are very few parents who are happy with a bad result in a Juvenile Dependency case. You must rely on your court appointed attorney to file the proper motions and you must assist him or her. Your other option is to hire a private Juvenile Dependency Attorney.

You cannot file a complaint against CPS for acting on your daughters report. It is their job to act on reports. It is the judges job to decide if the situation requires court jurisdiction and the court has decided that. There is no one to sue. You need to figure out how to get your family back. Wasting time trying to figure out who to sue is just not worth anyone's time or your money.



Thanks for your response, I am in the interim doing the services but just wanted to know what my other options are. My daughter even told the judge in chambers that it had been a lie and he said, according to the transcript, it's too late, she started it and now have to suffer the consequences... But all of us are suffering. But would you happen to know anything about my attorney. Her name is Darla Westgate and I feel that as much information I gave her, dug up, school records, etc... She did not submit any of it to the court, which feels like was a waste of time.... Thanks so much for your information!


You can not. I would print out Ms. Cox's explanation of the Court system and how it works, it was explained beautifully.

Providing general answers are meant to help the poster to understand some complex legal concepts and in no way creates an attorney-client relationship.


I completely agree with Ms.. Cox's evaluation and the suggestion you print out her post. You have very
limited time to act if you intend to challenge the decision.
If you wish to challenge the prosecution of a dependency case in this county, you will need an aggressive and competent attorney.
See Ms. Cox.

The above is not intended as legal advice. The response does not constitute the creation of an attorney client relationship as this forum does not provide for a confidential communication.

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