We’re here to help you get your kids back from DHR. We’re here to stand up for your rights to raise your own children. We’re not here to put some money in your pocket because DHR defamed you. Here’s why we probably couldn’t even if we wanted to…
1. Retained versus Contingency Cases — When you get in a car wreck and have a good case, the lawyer from the billboard or that handsome devil from Linkedin (you know the one) is going to take your case “for free” because they’re gonna get their piece of the funds available at resolution of the case. If you’ve ever bought a house, it’s the same way your realtor gets paid, at the closing of the real estate transaction out of the funds available from the transaction.
Since these cases are so extremely unlikely to result in any kind of monetary award or judgment against DHR, (we’ll get to that in the following sections), any lawyer that does sue DHR would probably have to be “retained,” i.e., paid up front and on an ongoing basis throughout the case. (Some of you will stop reading this article right now. You’re welcome.)
2. Damages — Success in a defamation case requires proof of reputational harm. Sounds simple enough, but the a#1 way of proving harm is using numbers, specifically, numbers of dollars. Johnny Depp prevailed in a defamation case because he convinced a jury that what Amber Heard said about him unfairly damaged his reputation in the broader community to the extent that Disney booted him from the Pirates franchise and, thus, Johnny lost out on the opportunity to earn tens of millions of dollars.
DHR investigations and cases are confidential. There’s a statistical likelihood that a friend, family member, co-worker or someone you know from church has dealt with DHR and you don’t even know. There you go.
Next, even if the community knew about your case with DHR, it’s highly unlikely any reputational damage would actually result in your inability to continue to earn your income. That DOES NOT mean that missing work for court or to take a drug test won’t affect your job, but that’s not reputational damage.
Point is, there’s no money in suing DHR, and we’re here to help you help your kids, not chase a dollar.
3. Immunity — Both DHR and their individual employees, acting as agents of the state, are protected from traditional lawsuits through immunity laws. The idea is that if a DHR social worker had to worry about getting sued every time they picked up a child that could cripple the child welfare system and endanger children. Think of it like suing or prosecuting a police officer acting within the scope of their duties, except in this case someone is purportedly trying to help a child so they’re gonna get even more leeway from the law and the court system
We take DHR to court all the time, and we’re glad to do so, but we do it in Child Custody cases for Parents and Relatives standing up for themselves and their families. If that’s what you need, we’re here to help. But we’re not going to sue them, in the traditional sense, for any kind of money damages.
Of course, some of or all of what we’ve discussed here may not apply to your unique case, but please be prepared to contact another firm if this is just about suing DHR. We’re here to help you keep your kids or get them back.
If you would like to learn more about how you, as a Committed Parent or Caring Relative, can stand up for yourself and be more effective in your Child Custody case, please visit https://www.thinkfoxtrot.com and click the “book appointment online” button at the top right to schedule your initial consultation at one of our offices.
This article contains general information and should not be construed as legal advice for you and or your unique situation. ~SW, Foxtrot