Abuse and neglect cases have well-defined parameters. However, what about kids who get taken from non-abusive homes? Can the CPS remove your children for other reasons?
As a parent, it is important to protect your rights if CPS comes to investigate your home. It is also critical to know how the state determines the need to terminate parental rights.
The state of Michigan is stepping into a higher number of families and regulating parenting through fear. Sometimes, it can feel like no family is safe.
What are some other reasons CPS can take away your children?
5 Reasons CPS Can Remove Your Children in Michigan
Here are five things parents have done that the state of Michigan has used against them to take away their children.
Failure to Act
This is a heartbreaking charge for parents and one that CPS uses a lot because it covers a wide variety of cases that don’t fall into abuse or neglect categories.
This means you failed to stop a situation that was hurting your child when you could have.
However, it has been leveled against parents whose children were in accidents beyond their control. Additionally, it has been used against parents who were victims themselves of violence or domestic abuse.
Yes, in Michigan, it is still legal to spank your child.
Michigan law states that parents can use “reasonable force” to discipline their child.
However, that won’t stop CPS from interpreting your actions in the worst possible light.
If you do spank your child, you might end up having to defend your choices in front of a judge.
All it takes is a teacher or a daycare worker getting wind that you “hit” your child, and your life could become a legal nightmare overnight.
Letting Your Kids Wait in the Car
A news story about a Kentucky mother illustrates how easy it is to get unwanted attention from police and CPS if you leave your children alone.
I’m not talking about neglect-level abandoning your children; hopping in the car and hightailing it to Canada.
I’m talking about leaving older children in a running or well-ventilated car during a ten-minute errand.
As horrific as child car deaths are, they happen after children are forgotten in cars for hours, not intentionally left alone in safe conditions for short periods.
I’m talking about leaving responsible kids at home for short periods. I’m talking about allowing your kids to play in the park or walk down the street by themselves or go 30 feet away from you in a public area.
No one is safe.
There is a gray area in Michigan law surrounding what an acceptable age to let your children do things on their own like stay home or walk to school is.
Despite many studies showing that it is safe and beneficial to allow children to do things on their own, nosy neighbors and judgmental bystanders can bring CPS in to make your life miserable quickly.
Disagreeing With Your Pediatrician
The state sees your obligation to your children as encompassing adequate food, shelter, clothing, and medical care.
As wrong as it is, and a violation of a family’s rights, the state is increasingly stepping in to regulate children’s medical care.
If you skip wellness visits to your pediatrician, you could be risking a visit from CPS. This has happened to parents who were changing pediatricians or getting a second medical opinion.
It’s increasingly common for parents whose religious beliefs would keep their kids from traditional doctors’ care as well.
Parents should also exercise caution before giving any medication or treatment to their children without consulting a doctor. You could end up losing your children for giving them something CPS thinks they shouldn’t have.
As hard as it is to imagine, if your child is excessively angry, this can lead to trouble with CPS.
Angry children who know enough about the system can report you to CPS vindictively, or unwittingly.
No one is perfect. However, if there is a lot of angry fighting in your home, and your child brings it to school with him, you could end up being under suspicion.
Teachers and school administrators see aggression as a sign of emotional distress and decide to report you for suspected abuse or neglect.
While it may be true that excessive anger points to trouble, I don’t believe you and your child should be separated for it. However, the state might.
If you see a troubling pattern emerging, there are ways to get help through therapy before the state gets involved.
For 24/7 Legal Representation in Michigan – Contact Us
These five reasons CPS can remove your children are not meant to scare you. However, they will make you aware of how vulnerable every parent is in this age of fear and too much control by the state.
Making wise decisions and treating your children with respect will go a long way toward keeping CPS out of your business.
However, if you find yourself wrongly accused, call my office immediately. You need an aggressive defense and keep your family intact.
Let’s start fighting for your family.