Attorney DeBruin represents clients from across lower Michigan.

Attorney DeBruin represents clients from across lower michigan.

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Obtaining Emergency Custody of Your Children During the COVID-19 Pandemic

On Behalf of | Mar 30, 2020 | COVID-19, Family Law, Firm News

As the COVID-19 pandemic locks many of us inside our houses, the last think you want to worry about is the safety and health of your children. However, the sudden isolation can leave many desperately seeking access to their children and struggling to escape domestic violence.

If you want to seek emergency custody of your children or need a protective order, contact DeBruin Law PLLC today. We are available and operating normally for families across the region affected by COVID-19.

Call us at (517) 324-4303 or use our online contact form.

Going to Court During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Many Michigan courts have limited operations and have postponed hearings due to the public health crisis; however, the Family Division of the Ingham County 30th Judicial Circuit Court in Lansing, the Family Division of the Eaton County 56th Judicial Circuit Court in Charlotte, and the Family Division of the 29th Judicial Circuit Court in St. Johns, are still hearing matters that are necessary for the safety and well-being of children under MCR 3.207, which includes ex parte, temporary, and protective orders.

Even during this time, the court will still:

  • Issue protective orders against domestic violence
  • Have a hearing regarding child support, custody, or visitation

Emergency Child Custody During COVID-19

Sudden school closures have left many parents without care for their children during the day. Business closures have resulted in unexpected unemployment as well. Some parents may not be able to care for their children properly, or children may be in a high-risk environment and you may be worried about them getting the coronavirus.

There are situations that warrant emergency custody orders in Michigan, including issues that may predate COVID-19. While you try to work with your child’s other parent to modify your arrangement temporarily, you may need something done immediately. If they refuse to negotiate with you, ignore medical advice, or put your child’s health or safety at risk, you should contact a Lansing family lawyer right away.

DeBruin Law PLLC can file new actions and motions electronically, if necessary. This includes Emergency Custody Orders.

What Is an Emergency Custody Order?

An Emergency Custody Order is an “ex parte order” that can be made in the absence of the other parent when the situation is needed immediately. It is a short-term custody order granted by a judge under limited emergency circumstances, where you must prove irreparable harm to the child, often without a hearing.

In order to get emergency custody of your children, you must prove that your children are at substantial risk and that there would be irreparable injury to the child if the court waited to have a hearing. You should work with a Lansing child custody attorney to discuss the evidence needed to prove that an Emergency Custody Order is necessary.

Law enforcement can assist in recovering a child if an ex parte order is issued.

What Happens if the Court Does not Enter an Emergency Custody Order?

If the Court determines that an Emergency Custody Order is not necessary and denies your ex parte request, you can ask that the Court schedule a hearing very quickly in order to hear from both parties before issuing an order.

What Happens After the Emergency Custody Order?

If the Court changes custody or visitation through an emergency order, a hearing must be scheduled so that both parties have an opportunity to be heard. This will also require the help of a child custody lawyer who can guide you through the legal system.

Contact DeBruin Law PLLC with Questions

While many Michigan Courts are only open for specific situations, there is a lot DeBruin Law PLLC can do so that the unprecedented events of COVID-19 do not negatively impact your life. Conferences and negotiations can take place over the phone, by video, and many court filings can be done electronically.

Contact Attorney Tiffany DeBruin for help with emergency custody or other family law issues that you need solved today. Call (517) 324-4303 or use our online contact form. We are accepting new clients, performing multiple consultations daily, and are available during normal hours.

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