The Model Court supports safety, stability, permanency, and well-being
for families in Livingston County.
The Model Court is based on
the NCJFCJ principle that every child and young person should be reared in a
safe, permanent, and nurturing family, where love, self-control, concern for
others, and responsibility for the consequences of one’s actions are experienced
and taught as fundamental values for a successful life. Every child in need of
judicial oversight should have access to fair, effective, and timely
Court process: For parents involved in the
Child Protection Court System, a Parent
is available. (link) Parents should be able to
use this Guide as a tool throughout the system. Parents can also draw on
resources that are available through DHS.
Violence: Many families involved in Juvenile Court have a history of
domestic violence. Parents who have been victims of domestic violence should
know that they have supports available in the community. For more information about LACASA
, Livingston County’s Domestic Violence organization.
have perpetrated domestic violence should know that the community supports
efforts toward positive change, but that domestic violence must stop.
Domestic Violence involves not just physical violence, but involves a
person abusing a spouse, dating partner, or parent of their children, because
the abuser believes the abuser has a right to control the other person. The
abuse usually is carried out over time in what is called a pattern of abuse. The
pattern of abuse may involve physical, sexual, emotional, financial, and other
forms of abuse. LACASA has a Domestic Abuse Intervention
Program, which is a group that lasts 40 weeks. Perpetrators of domestic
violence are expected to complete this program and demonstrate that they have
stopped all abusive behaviors.
Legal help: In Child
Protection cases, parents are entitled to be represented by an attorney. If a
parent cannot afford an attorney the Court will appoint an attorney to represent
the parent. If the attorney is to be appointed, the Court will select the
attorney from a list of attorneys who receive Court appointments in Livingston
County Juvenile Court. These attorneys are experienced in practice representing
parents and also children in child protection cases.
To find an attorney
who practices in Livingston County, you can contact the Livingston County Bar
Association at: https://livingstoncountybar.com/
You can also contact Legal Services of South Central Michigan at: http://www.lsscm.org/
Other help: Livingston County Human Services Collaborative Body
Getting involved: Parents interested in getting
involved in the Model Court may be interested in the Parent Involvement