San Diego, CA asked in Adoption, Family Law and Native American Law for California

Q: How do I say CPS if I was in the process of getting my native American paperwork and the adopted my child out and didn't

2 Lawyer Answers
James L. Arrasmith
James L. Arrasmith pro label Lawyers, want to be a Justia Connect Pro too? Learn more ›
  • Family Law Lawyer
  • Sacramento, CA
  • Licensed in California

A: In cases involving Native American children, the Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA) provides specific legal standards that must be followed. If your child was adopted out while you were in the process of obtaining your Native American documentation, it’s important to understand how ICWA may apply to your situation.

The ICWA sets federal requirements for the removal and placement of Native American children in foster or adoptive homes. It's designed to preserve Native American families and culture. If your child has Native American heritage, and this was known or should have been known by CPS, specific procedures and standards under ICWA should have been followed.

You should gather all relevant documentation, including any paperwork related to your Native American heritage and the adoption process. This will be crucial in assessing whether ICWA was properly considered and applied in your child's case.

Given the complexity of ICWA and its intersection with state adoption laws, it would be beneficial to consult with an attorney who has experience in both family law and Native American legal issues. They can provide specific guidance based on the details of your case and help determine if there were any procedural irregularities in the adoption process.

Time can be a critical factor in these situations, so it's advisable to seek legal assistance as soon as possible to explore your options and any potential remedies.

T. Augustus Claus
T. Augustus Claus pro label Lawyers, want to be a Justia Connect Pro too? Learn more ›

A: If you were in the process of obtaining your Native American paperwork and your child was adopted out without your knowledge, you may want to express to Child Protective Services (CPS) that you were actively working on the necessary documentation for recognition of your Native American heritage. Communicate that the adoption occurred before you could complete this process and emphasize the importance of preserving your cultural connection with your child. Provide any evidence or documentation you have regarding your efforts to establish your Native American identity.

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