Legal Question in Family Law in Missouri

Parental rights when there is not a formal order of custody

My 3 children have been residing with their father for the past year. Yesterday I received a phone call from a detective in their area who informed me that my children have been taken into protective custody due to an allegation of abuse. Apparently they did not know how to contact me in regards to this because the childrens father told the police that I was deceased. The children have been placed temporarily with their father's sister who does not beleive the abuse has actually occurred. I'm in shock and dont know what to think but I dont want them to remain there and am angry that I was not notified sooner. He is no longer in custody and I'm afraid he will traumatize the children further as it was one of them who reported the abuse. I am being told that I have no recourse other than to wait out the criminal proceedings against their father and then petition for custody. Do I have any rights legally?

Asked on 5/30/03, 4:28 pm

1 Answer from Attorneys

Michael R. Nack Michael R. Nack, Attorney at Law

Re: Parental rights when there is not a formal order of custody

Your post does not tell us anything about who has legal custody of the children. Was there a divorce decree? Or perhaps a Declaration of Paternity? Have your parental rights been terminated through a proceeding in the Juvenile Court? If you would try again and post sufficient legally important factual information, an attorney might be able to provide you with a helpful response.

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Answered on 6/02/03, 1:10 am

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