The Oklahoma law firm of Fry & Elder realizes that juvenile deprived proceedings in Oklahoma are complicated, confidential matters governed by the Oklahoma Children’s Code, presently located at title 10A of Oklahoma Statutes. The definition of a deprived child in the statutes is very long, and the definition concludes with, “Nothing contained in this paragraph shall prevent a court from immediately assuming custody of a child and ordering whatever action may be necessary, including medical treatment, to protect the child’s health or welfare.” Put very generally, juvenile deprived proceedings concern minor children who are alleged to have been abused or neglected.
How Juvenile Deprived Proceedings in Oklahoma Differ from others
Juvenile deprived proceedings in Oklahoma have their own special section of laws, and juvenile deprived cases are different from all other cases, including civil and criminal matters. Parties to juvenile deprived proceedings in Oklahoma may include, but are not necessarily limited to, the State of Oklahoma through the office of the county prosecutor, the State of Oklahoma through the Department of Human Services (“DHS”), the minor child who is the subject of the proceeding, each parent, and the Indian tribe if the minor child is a member of a tribe.
Realize what is at Stake
Anyone in Oklahoma may report child abuse or neglect. If a report is made, DHS has an obligation to investigate the report. An investigation of allegations of child abuse or child neglect by law enforcement or by DHS concerns the rights of the parent or guardian of that minor child. If you are contacted by law enforcement or by DHS concerning a report or potential investigation of child abuse or neglect, you should consult a Fry & Elder trial lawyer right away.
What you should do
Allegations of child abuse and neglect investigated by DHS may lead to other investigations, including investigation by law enforcement for criminal acts. A DHS finding may have a significant and even permanent impact on your parental rights long after the investigation has been concluded. If a juvenile deprived proceeding is filed concerning your child, you could potentially lose your parental rights to that child forever. At the Oklahoma family law firm of Fry & Elder, the trial lawyers have extensive trial experience in matters including child custody, criminal defense, and juvenile deprived proceedings in Oklahoma. If you or your child is a party to a juvenile deprived case, contact Fry & Elder to meet with a trial lawyer to discuss your rights.