In nearly all cases where a government
agency such as CPS files allegations against you,
that agency has the burden of proof. It is the job of the attorney
experienced in juvenile dependency law to protect and fight for
you and against the allegations that are lodged against you.
of the Evidence
Standards of Proof in Dependency Court Proceedings
Proof which is of greater weight or more convincing than the proof that is offered
in opposition to it; that is, proof which as a whole shows that the fact sought
to be proved is more probable than not.
This is the standard of proof in Juvenile and Dependency cases including Jurisdiction
Real World Meaning: If the county's proof is 51% stronger or more convincing
than that of the opposing party (you), their petition will be upheld by the court.
While this is a relatively low standard of proof, do not be fooled. The department
must still affirmatively prove the allegations they are asserting in every
case by a preponderance of the evidence.
Proof that results in a reasonable certainty of the truth of the fact or assertion
This is the standard of proof that is used in Juvenile and Dependency Court for
disposition hearings. If the county CPS agency is seeking a disposition of family
reunification over your family, the burden of proof rests with that government
Real World Meaning: The burden shifts again to the county; their proof must be
70-80% more convincing or stronger than that of the opposing party (you).
Reasonable Doubt (NOT used
in juvenile court)
Proof that results in the belief that the fact or allegation by the government
is true beyond a reasonable doubt.
This is the standard of proof that is uses in criminal cases. It is NOT used
in Dependency Court proceedings.