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Which services does Florida DCF offer a 'Parent in Need of Assistance'?

Tallahassee, FL |

Which services does Florida DCF offer a 'Parent in Need of Assistance'? Specifically a situation where a single parent has physical custody of a mentally ill but high functioning teenager at home?
My friend was urged to call DCF (on her own behalf) but she doesn't want to open herself up to an investigation or incriminate herself because she has a very nasty, vindictive ex-husband who is the father of her mentally ill teenager. This man is irate that he was court ordered to a child support increase with income deduction and much more. When she explained this to me, it sounded like a set up rather than someone genuinely concerned about her and her son. Will calling DCF for herself as a 'Parent in Need of Assistance' be helpful or hurtful. She does not qualify for foodstamps, medicaid, etc.

Mother currently and regularly takes child to doctor for medication management and to a psychologist for therapy. Father threatens her emotionally. Father wants custody, trying to create a paper trail of bad mother parenting. Custody would mean he would not pay this substantial child support increase.

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Attorney answers 3


What exactly is it that she is seeking? Is she in fear of the ex-husband, has he done something?

You should consult an attorney for advice regarding your individual situation since every case is different and not all information is relayed in an online question. The Law Office of Ophelia Bernal-Mora, P.A. is a family law firm located in Orlando, Florida, we invite you to contact us and welcome your calls at 407-354-5223. Contacting us does not create an attorney-client relationship. Please do not send any confidential information to us until such time as an attorney-client relationship has been established.


This is too abstract. We can't answer questions that someone that you know "may" have about the consequences of certain events that she "may be" interesting in learning. You should have a very frank discussion with her and remove any ambiguity about what she is trying to accomplish. She should have no problem with this if she is a friend.

Bill Rosenfelt 407-462-8787 (Orlando/Longwood/Central Florida)

Please be advised that any answers or information disseminated above do not constitute legal advice and that the attorney responsible for this posting is merely attempting to participate in a Q & A session intended to be helpful but certainly not intended to be legal advice. It is important that you understand that no attorney-client relationship has been formed and that the attorney has no obligation to follow up with you with your legal issue unless you separately contact said attorney and arrange for him to legally represent you.


DCF has a number of services to offer parents in this set of circumstances. Most likely, if a DCF action has been filed, DCF will ask for a staffing to determine if there are any programs that can help parents like your friend. If a DCF action has been filed, your friend has probably been assigned counsel by the court. It may be worth her while as well to talk to private counsel for someone to assist with this process.

Please note that the answers provided herein are the attorney's professional opinions based upon the attorney's experience based upon the information provided to the attorney as part of the attorney's participation in the setting of this forum. No responses posted by the attorney in question are intended to be legal advice or professional advice of any kind. No attorney-client relationship is being established or solicited. The attorney will not make any communication with the person asking the question unless that person independently contacts the attorney outside of this forum.

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