What rights does a father have in Massachusetts?
In Massachusetts mothers and fathers have equal rights in child custody cases. However, when a child is born to unwed parents , fathers have the additional hurdle of establishing paternity in order to assert their rights as a parent . Once paternity is established, fathers may bring a claim for custody of their children.
How Long Does DCF have to investigate a case in MA?
Once DCF receives a report, it begins an investigation . The report may be investigated within 24 hours if it is an emergency, within 10 days if it is not.
Is Parental Alienation illegal in Massachusetts?
In Massachusetts , family courts have recognized the validity of parental alienation claims on the basis that the alienating behaviors are contrary to the best interest of the child.
What makes a parent unfit in Massachusetts?
Generally, if a parent neglects or is unable to provide for the needs and welfare of their child, the court may determine that they are parentally unfit . A parent with a violent criminal history or ongoing substance or alcohol abuse issues may also face questions surrounding parental unfitness.
Can a mother legally keep her child away from the father?
The answer is usually no, a parent cannot stop a child from seeing the other parent unless a court order states otherwise. This question often comes up in the following situations. The parents have an existing court order, and a parent is violating the court order by interfering with the other parent’s parenting time.
At what age can a child decide which parent to live with in MA?
18 years old
What does a 51a mean?
When someone reports to DCF that they think a child is being abused or neglected, the report is called a ” 51A report.” The law also says that certain kinds of people must report child abuse and neglect to DCF. They are called mandated reporters.
How do I get my DCF records in MA?
Phone Main Call Massachusetts Department of Children & Families ( DCF ), Main at (617) 748-2000. Auto Attendant Call Massachusetts Department of Children & Families ( DCF ), Auto Attendant at 617-748-2400. Child-at-Risk Hotline Call Massachusetts Department of Children & Families ( DCF ), Child-at-Risk Hotline at 800-792-5200.
Can DCF reopen a closed case?
Report Abuse DCFS will not open a new case unless they get a report of abuse or neglect. However, If they find a need to open a new case , all of the information from the previous case will be available to them.
Can you sue a parent for parental alienation?
However, in extreme cases, a parent who has been alienated from his children by the other parent may bring a civil action for damages against that parent if the claims of alienation include false accusations of sexual abuse or otherwise lying to a child about one of their parents .
What constitutes child abandonment in Massachusetts?
Abandonment of a child without anyone responsible for his or her care. A brief absence does not amount to abandonment . When a child is abandoned, the state is not required to work with the family to achieve reunification, but the state is required to document efforts to locate the child’s caregivers.
What do judges think of parental alienation?
Per the panel, some judges think that Parental Alienation does not exist unless the child states that he or she never wants to see the other parent again. Others do not have such a benchmark.
What are the 4 types of child neglect?
Answer Physical Neglect . The failure to provide necessary food, clothing, and shelter; inappropriate or lack of supervision. Medical Neglect . The failure to provide necessary medical or mental health treatment. Educational Neglect . Emotional Neglect .
Can text messages be used in child custody court?
In family law cases, both sides will need to present evidence to the court to support their proposed property, support, and child custody orders. As long as the text message is sent by one the opposing party, and is a statement against that party’s interest, it may be admissible in court .
How do you prove best interest of the child?
What Factors Determine the Child’s Best Interests ? The wishes of the child (if old enough to capably express a reasonable preference); The mental and physical health of the parents; Any special needs a child may have and how each parent takes care of those needs; Religious and/or cultural considerations;