How Long Getting Emergency Custody Can Take in Pennsylvania

Schwartz, Fox & Saltzman, LLC. – Philadelphia Divorce Lawyers

Obtaining emergency custody orders in Pennsylvania can be a time-sensitive and stressful process as it involves a child’s health, welfare, and safety. Emergency custody, by design, happens comparatively quickly but still must follow a specific process to prevent parents from endangering their child. However, if you can prove your child is in immediate danger, you will be granted temporary custody until a final hearing can be held.

The child custody lawyers at Schwartz, Fox & Saltzman have been representing parents in custody proceedings for over 40 years.

In this article, we outline the process of obtaining an emergency custody order in Pennsylvania and provide an estimate of the length of the process.

How Long It Usually Takes to Get Emergency Custody

If you seek an emergency custody order you may obtain emergency custody immediately at an ex parte hearing if you can prove your child faces an immediate risk of danger or being removed from Pennsylvania without Court permission. The length of time it takes to obtain an emergency custody order in Pennsylvania can vary depending on the specific circumstances of the case. If you can prove a true emergency exists, you may be able to obtain emergency custody in a short period of time by filing a Petition for Emergency Custody.

When to File for Emergency Custody

Emergency custody is typically sought in cases where a child is in immediate danger and requires immediate protection. If you suspect your child is in serious danger or is in danger of being removed from Pennsylvania, you can file for an Emergency Custody Order. As explained by Pennsylvania caselaw, you should file an Emergency Custody Petition if an emergency situation arises or if the conduct of the other parent endangers your children.

Emergency Custody is a Temporary Order

Emergency child custody granted under a Petition for Emergency Custody can initially be a temporary order for a petitioning parent. Each county has different procedural rules for the granting or denial of an Emergency Custody request.

What Happens After Getting Emergency Custody

If you are granted temporary emergency custody of your child, you will receive physical custody and legal custody pursuant to an emergency order until a final hearing can be held. If the court does not believe that the danger is imminent, the court may not issue a Temporary Emergency Order, but will give the parties a date to return for a hearing.

How a Child Custody Lawyer Can Help

Obtaining emergency child custody in Pennsylvania can be a complex and emotional process. A child custody lawyer can provide valuable assistance by helping you navigate the legal process and protect the child’s best interests. Further, with the County Rules of Procedure being different in every county, it is important to engage a Custody Attorney who is knowledgeable of the County Rules in the county in which you will be filing your Petition. An experienced custody lawyer can help you:

  • Prepare and file an emergency petition for Protection from Abuse Order
  • Prepare for the ex parte hearing
  • Represent you at the final hearing
  • Prepare and file an emergency petition
  • Negotiate a custody agreement

Summary of How Long Emergency Custody Takes

In summary, the process of obtaining emergency child custody in Pennsylvania can take, one day or longer, depending on the facts of your case and the type of petition you file with the court. It is important to act quickly if you believe your child is in immediate danger. Contact us today to learn more about the services Schwartz, Fox & Saltzman can provide.

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