Every summer Texas holds an annual Institute on Alcohol and Drug Abuse 2-week event that usually has 1,500 attendees per week. Numerous private and nonprofit providers have booths to exhibit their services. Bookstores exhibit and sell literature on such subjects as substance abuse, health, mental health issues, marriages, relationships, cultures, and motivational stories.

The difficulty for a treatment provider is that before information may be shared with other agencies, the client must sign a consent form permitting the program to communicate freely with specified agencies. Service plans may include a comprehensive treatment plan involving several agencies. Some communities have established multiagency teams to coordinate support for families in crisis. In West Hawaii, for example, a multidisciplinary team is formed to assist the CPS agency worker in high-risk or complex cases, such as severe abuse that results in hospitalization.


If parental substance abuse leads to serious danger or harm to children, the child welfare system may intervene and take custody of the children. While a treatment program and a CPS agency may have conflicts regarding certain clients’ cases, the program needs to maintain a good working relationship with the CPS agency and other agencies involved in the child protection system. It is possible, outside the context of any individual case, for treatment programs, CPS agencies, and others to work together to develop common approaches to improve family functioning, reduce substance use, and keep children safe.

Sometimes, the treatment system’s interest in the client’s recovery conflicts with the CPS agency’s interest in protection of and permanency planning for the child. For example, the counselor’s goal of having the client reduce his substance abuse may conflict with the CPS agency’s goal of finding a permanent placement for a child who has been in foster care for many months. You must first understand that child protective services cannot force you to do anything against your will.

can cps make you go to rehab

Going hard on alcohol, meth, pain pills, heroin and then finally losing her children to CPS. After years of battling with her addiction, Nadine completed a treatment program, gained visitation rights and then brought her daughter home. You may engage in substance abuse yourself despite your attempts to curtail your usage of these substances or efforts to help yourself get better. This does, however, mean that you put yourself and your children in a position when you use these substances where your and their healthy being is in jeopardy. Your decision-making and parenting skills are compromised if you use and abuse drugs or alcohol. Child Protective Services intervenes in many cases of parental drug use every year.Remember, custody rights are always based on what is in the child’s best interest.

However, like we said at the beginning, many parents don’t know their rights and agree to a drug test. This article deals only with CPS requested drug tests before a child is removed from the parent. Parents’ rightswhen CPS is called to conduct an initial investigation.

Can CPS Force Me to Go to Rehab?

CPS will tell you that their goal is to work within the framework of the caregivers, parents, and families that are already in place for your child. CPS also will get in touch with other adults in your child’s life to help educate and impress upon them the importance of helping to maintain a safe and healthy environment for your child. We may know people in our personal lives that have been contacted by CPS in some capacity or have seen a movie or television show where CPS was responding to an allegation of abuse or neglect of a child. That’s all fine and well, but unless you know what CPS does in “real life,” you will not be better off.

What happens when the CPS decide to charge?

If the CPS decides to proceed, the abuser will initially be taken to a Magistrates' Court, after which (depending on the seriousness of the charge) he will either be remanded in custody or released on bail.

However, your caseworker will certainly place certain expectations and criteria for reunification with your children. The criteria that they may set is that you must complete a treatment program of some sort. However, there are many different types of treatment programs that you can take to regain custody of your child. Some of these areoutpatient programs, and others areinpatient treatment programs. If you’re suffering from an intense addiction to a very hard drug, then inpatient rehab may be the best option for you. It means that they are looking to see an active effort on your part to address your substance abuse issues.So, can CPS make you go to rehab?

Can Parents Lose Custody for Drug Use or Alcoholism?

(For guidelines on maintaining client confidentiality and the legal requirements involved, please see Appendix B.) Frequently clients do not understand the severity of their situation and may minimize or withhold information. This may be due to drug-related cognitive impairments, low IQ, naivete regarding the legal system, or the same denial and rationalization alcoholics anonymous that sustained their addictions. Many courts have also disregarded sentencing guidelines and imprisoned pregnant drug users for terms long enough to ensure their infants were born drug free (Garrity-Rokous, 1994). The South Carolina State Supreme Court was the first to rule that a viable fetus could be considered a “person” under child abuse laws.

  • In some cases, disclosing information to the CPS agency or court will benefit the client.
  • But if the judge finds that those “reunification” efforts have failed, the parent could not only lose custody—but could be stripped of all parental rights over the child.
  • If the client makes the report from the counselor’s office, the counselor can provide appropriate support.
  • Treatment programs may benefit from training provided by other agencies, including CPS agencies and law enforcement organizations.

Believe me, we looked and looked, and had a difficult time finding cases where Courts have specifically addressed a parent’s rights before CPS removes a child. Are geared toward keeping families together while helping parents recover. If you or any of your loved ones experience a substance use disorder, you do not have to do it alone. Each rehab facility has its own policies, but there are some that allow parents to bring small children.

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It’s heartbreaking to have your children taken away, but you need to do what’s best for them right now. The only way you are going to be capable of giving your children the care they need is by taking care of yourself. However, before taking your children after you test positive, the CPS caseworker must establish a link between your drug use and the risk of harm to the children.

Can you drop allegations?

But charges can be dropped any time before the trial or up until the point where the prosecution is done with presenting their side of the case. If charges are dropped after the trial begins, the prosecution must request the court to allow the charges to be dropped, and the court may or may not give their consent.

CPS agencies are not interested in investigating cases in which no child is in imminent danger. However, if the person who abused or neglected the client now has custody of other children, the program should seek advice about whether it has reporting responsibility. If a client consents, the program can report the situation even if it is not mandated to do so. The situation is more complicated if, while in treatment, a client has had to leave her children with a family member who is the same person who abused her as a child. She may fear for her children’s safety but have no alternatives for child care and therefore may not even identify this person as the perpetrator.

Jump to the Questions You Need Answered

In some cases, child protective services are involved, and they dictate whether you go to rehab and where your children will live. Not only may a parent’s substance abuse factor into initial custody decisions, but excessive drinking or drug use could also play a role after the divorce or other custody orders are in place. If a parent with sole or shared custody begins to show worrying signs of substance abuse that could endanger the child, the other parent may go back to court to request a custody modification.

can cps make you go to rehab

In some cases the same person can be the guardian of the person and of the estate. You will continue to have support from your rehab facility after you have been released. You can have regular meetings with your therapist on an outpatient alcoholism & hypoglycemia therapist. When you feel like you are at risk of turning back to your addiction, call for help. In the same way that your children were removed from your home, you will distance yourself from a harmful environment when you begin rehab.

Remember, it’s highly likely that if you do not comply with the plan, they will not allow reunification with your children. Another extremely important thing is ensuring that you fully detox to provide evidence that you are not using. Drug testing is often a requirement when it comes to open CPS cases for drug or alcohol abuse. Because many parents who abuse substances also neglect or abuse their children, it is common for clients in substance abuse treatment to have contact with some part of the child protective services system. While the organizational roles and titles will vary, a CPS agency is the part of a State’s child welfare system responsible for investigating and processing child abuse and neglect cases.

CPS workers ask questions in an attempt to gauge the strength of your child’s relationship with you to allow them to gain a window into the extent of your substance abuse. CPS will intervene in a situation where it is reported to them that your use of drugs or alcohol is either placing your child into a dangerous situation or where you have abused your child. However, CPS is duty-bound to investigate and intervene in these reports to ensure your child’s safety. Some of the more frantic and concerned people that I have the opportunity to meet with as an attorney with the Law Office of Bryan Fagan, PLLC, are those parents who have recently been contacted by Child Protective Services .

Sometimes, the court hearing a client’s case will ask a treatment program to write a report about his progress in treatment. Or a client’s lawyer may ask an agency to submit a letter to the court to support a disposition she is advocating. balancing risks, benefits of alcohol In any letter it submits, the agency should limit itself to reporting factual information, such as client attendance and urine toxicology screen results; it should not speculate on the future of the client or the client’s family.

can cps make you go to rehab

What usually follows is that the parent’s test comes back positive for an illegal drug and the children are removed from the parent by CPS. The drug test may come back for a prescription drug like pain medication or a mood stabilizer and CPS removes the child and determines the parents are unfit. Montgomery County, Maryland, has a task force to integrate adult treatment services within the social services of CPS agencies, welfare and housing, and the juvenile justice system, recognizing the shared interests and client base. What should a counselor do if the client is continuing to abuse the child, the counselor knows this, and the counselor is asked to submit a report? First, if a counselor believes that her client is continuing to abuse a child and that the child’s life or health is in danger, the counselor can make another “initial” report to the CPS agency .