What could happen to my parental rights if my child has a case in juvenile delinquency court?

You may not be able to take your child home with you. The juvenile court will hold a “detention hearing” where the judge decides whether or not you, as the parent, have the right to take your child home while the case is ongoing. The judge’s decision on where to release the child is based what the judge determines is best for your child, including the following factors:

    (1) If the District Attorney has evidence to support the charges, AND
    (2) One of the following is true:
    The child has violated a juvenile court order;
    The child is a flight risk (meaning the child is likely to run away),;
    There is immediate and urgent necessity to detain (hold the child in custody) the child for the child’s protection; or
    It is reasonably necessary for the protection of someone else or their
    property that the child be detained.[2461]

During this process, you, as the child’s parent, have the RIGHT to:

    Get a copy of the 601 Petition and/or 602 Petition,[2462] which explain what your child is being accused of (in other words, these petitions are NOT findings of guilt).
    To be legally notified of the first hearing, called a “detention hearing.”[2463]
    Be present at all your child’s hearings and court dates (see PG. 735 for more information).[2464]
    Your child’s juvenile delinquency court file, AND
    To ask that your child’s court hearings to be kept confidential[2465].
  1. 2461

    Judicial Council of Cal., Guide to Juvenile Court, California Courts, http://www.courts.ca.gov/1216.htm.

  2. 2462

    Judicial Council of Cal., Guide to Juvenile Court, California Courts, http://www.courts.ca.gov/1216.htm.

  3. 2463

    Judicial Council of Cal., California Courts, www.courts.ca.gov/1216htm.

  4. 2464

    Cal. Rules of Court 5.530.

  5. 2465

    Cal. Rules of Court 5.552 & 5.530.