If my children’s grandmother called DCFS on me since I will not let them see the kids because they are drug addicts, what can I do to protect my kids?

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If my children’s grandmother called DCFS on me since I will not let them see the kids because they are drug addicts, what can I do to protect my kids?

I don’t want my children to have to see them again. By the way the grandmother does have legal documention stating that she is mental unstable from netcare. I just dont have money to get a lawyer. So I just want to make sure before I get a loan and so forth.

Asked on October 8, 2012 under Family Law, Ohio

Answers:

B.H.F., Member, Texas State Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

Ohio  does have some limited provisions for grandparents to gain visitation with grandchildren.  If a parent does not agree to allow a child access, then they can file a petition for access to the grandchild.  You mention that your children's grandmother called DCFS, but do not indicate whether or not there are any current orders in place.  If there are no orders, then you do not have to allow the children access.  Keep telling grandmother "no."  You are not required to give her access if there are not orders in place-- and you don't need an attorney (at this point) just to tell her "no."  If DCFS shows up, make sure they know that the call is retaliation and grandmother has issues, such that, if you allowed the children to go, then they would then be at risk.

If grandmother has already applied an been granted access to the children by a court order, then you do need to hire an attorney to modify and restrict grandmother's access based on her drug addition and mental health issues.

Until there is some lawsuit pending (i.e. them suing you for access, or DCFS is really trying to intervene), then you don't need an attorney just yet.  However, just to be safe, start saving up funds (or make sure that you will have access to funds) in the event that you do get notice of a suit.  You may also want to scope out some attorneys in your area when you have free time.  Laying a little ground work right now will enable you to enforce your parental rights should grandmother attempt to interfere.


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