Q: Concluding CPS Case With Childs Father (Multi-State DV Felon w/ a 3yr No Contact Order)
Hello, I am finishing up a CPS case, completed treatment, have housing, my own vehicle, clean drug tests for a year. However, my childs father is trying o force visits with our daughter since October, but has been unsuccessful this far due to trauma he inflicted on us both. He is on probation for felony strangulation, use of a weapon and terroristic threats against myself with my daughter in the other room. Only one phone call has been allowed thus far but were stopped due to our daughters EXTREME trauma symptoms after one 15 min. phone call. I am just worried for her safety and my own. So I am curious if they award fathers like this 50/50 custody. He has had no visits so far but the judge is trying to force supervised visitation within the next 30 days. Is there a way I can stop this? My daughters therapist has recommended all phone calls stop and no contact should be made until my daughter is less reactive. There is a three year no contact order between us per terms of his probation
A: Nebraska DHHS has a general policy that they will follow recommendations of a children's therapist with regard to visitation, but generally to suspend visitation requires a court order. You mentioned having an open case - this means you likely have a court-appointed attorney. You should talk with your attorney and have him or her talk to your daughter's Guardian ad Litem and DHHS attorney as well as county attorney about their positions on visits and to make sure they know the information you shared here. Best wishes to you as you work through this!
It would be unusual for a judge to grant 50/50 custody when the Court is only contemplating supervised visits at this time.
A judge is not bound to the recommendations of a therapist. Sometimes the court will order family therapy sessions to have even more structured visits than supervised parenting time if the judge wants there to be contact between a child and parent and there are concerns that the contact may not be in the child's best interests.
Even if one judge grants supervised visits in one case, a different judge in the criminal case could potentially find that if he exercises the parenting time he is violating the terms of the probation and revoke probation. Judges like to be on the same page so it may make sense to make sure the judge is aware of the terms of the other order before granting a further order regarding parenting time.
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