Clients often contact me regarding service of papers to appear in court for a DCPP matter. There are two ways parents can be notified of DCPP court proceedings. One way is called a Dodd removal, which is an emergency removal without a court order. The division staff can actually take children out of a home if they believe those children are at imminent risk of harm. They will normally hand a parent a notification or a letter indicating that the child has been removed and the matter will be in court within the next two days. This is certainly legal and it is within the division’s rights to do that.
The other possibility is being served with a complaint that the division intends to either seek care and supervision or custody of children. That is a long form verified complaint that would be provided to the parents. Most often, that happens at the courthouse on the day that the division intends to seek the relief from the court. If you’re served with either of these papers you should contact counsel immediately to be apprised of your rights.
Paris P. Eliades Law Firm, LLC is honored to serve the people of Sussex, Morris, and Bergen County, New Jersey with effective legal representation regarding family law matters. If you need our quality legal services, contact our Sparta law office for a free consultation.