Dependency Proceedings

Important Note


Anything you say to the police, to family members or to others could be used against you in court. Therefore, do not discuss your case with anyone except your attorney or our office staff.

Always remember that you and your attorney are partners working for the best possible result for you. If you would like the attorney to discuss your case with family members, you must give the attorney permission to speak with them.

Dependency Proceedings


  1. Preliminary Protective Hearing
    • To determine temporary custody, services and placement.
  2. Mediation
    • To attempt resolution of any ongoing issues such as the dependency itself, services, placement and visitation.
  3. Adjudication Hearing
    • To determine if any of the allegations in the petition are true and justify continued court intervention.
  4. Disposition Hearing
    • To review the long-term plan for the child, which includes placement, services and future reviews.
  5. Report and Review Hearing
    • To review progress or lack thereof in the case. If necessary, the Court will also make changes to the case plan and issue needed orders. These hearings are typically held every two to six months.
  6. Planning Hearing
    • To determine a permanent plan for the child with respect to placement and parents. This hearing must be held within 12 months of the initial finding of dependency.
  7. Termination of Parental Rights Hearing
    • To determine if the rights of the parent should be terminated in order to free the child for adoption.
  8. Hearing
    • To place the child with an adoptive family for permanent care.