Attorney Kendra Ortega

Respected, Trusted Representation

A Law Firm Helping Parents Combat Allegations Of Child Abuse And Neglect

Last updated on June 20, 2024

Being accused of harming your own children is a nightmare scenario for just about every parent. Yet it happens more often than most people would assume and a Child Protective Services (CPS) investigation can be prompted with only minor evidence or speculative allegations. If you’ve been accused of neglect or abuse, please don’t try to resolve the matter on your own. Instead, work with Kendra Ortega, PLC.

Prior to practicing law, attorney Ortega worked for the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services. While she was not directly involved in CPS matters, she came to learn a great deal about that division and its resources and procedures. She now uses her in-depth knowledge to advise and defend parents in the Holland, area who are facing difficulties related to a CPS investigation. Ms. Ortega has earned a reputation for her effective work on behalf of parents and families, and she receives frequent CPS-related referrals from other attorneys.

Recognizing And Combatting Parental Alienation

Children can develop anger and resentment toward either or both parents during and after a divorce. But if children begin expressing hatred of, or aversion to, spending time with one parent for reasons having nothing to do with the parent’s past behaviors, that parent and the children may be victims of parental alienation syndrome (PAS). PAS occurs when one parent essentially brainwashes the children to turn against their other parent through repeated bad-mouthing, lies, interference with the other parent’s parenting time and more. It may be considered a form of child abuse that can leave deep emotional scars for children and the alienated parent.

While PAS is not a new idea, it continues to be widely misunderstood and often goes unrecognized in family law cases. If you believe that you and your children have been victims of PAS, attorney Ortega will work tirelessly to expose your co-parent’s harmful misdeeds and to mitigate the damage caused by them.

False CPS Allegations As Part Of Parental Alienation Strategy

Like personal protection orders, a parent may use Child Protective Services to build a case against the other parent. You will often see this in cases of parental alienation, where one parent attempts to alienate the children from the other parent. Parents make several calls to law enforcement or CPS and report false allegations of neglect or abuse.

The task of unraveling the lies and exposing the alienation can seem impossible. You will need an attorney like Kendra Ortega who has experience with parental alienation cases and knowledge about CPS procedures and policies.

What Is The CPS Investigation Process?

If you know that CPS is conducting an investigation into you and your family, contact a family law attorney immediately. CPS has up to 30 days to complete their investigation, and more time if they find extenuating circumstances that require an extension. These investigations often occur within 24 hours of notice and include actions such as:

  • In-person interviews with anyone involved, such as the supposed victim, their parents and caretakers.
  • Viewing the family’s home.
  • Reviewing necessary documents, such as police reports, medical reports and school records.
  • Interviewing neighbors, friends, relatives or professionals who have had contact with the family.
  • Assessing the child’s safety and future risk of abuse or neglect.
  • Evaluating the family’s needs and strengths.

Throughout the investigation, CPS will look at the factors involved in the situation, including alternative explanations for the allegations, family dynamics, the credibility of the person making the complaint and any corroborating evidence. Depending on what CPS finds, they will either decide if child abuse or neglect is present in your home or if the allegations are false and move forward accordingly.

Does CPS Have The Right To Enter My Home?

When CPS shows up at your home, it is natural to feel scared and unsure if you should open the door. When they come for an inspection, be sure to stay calm and cooperative with them, as interfering can only harm your case. While CPS workers are not law enforcement, they do have the legal right to enter your home in circumstances, such as:

  • When you consent to their visit.
  • In an emergency where a child is in immediate danger.
  • When accompanied by the police with a warrant or court order.

By calling Kendra Ortega, PLC, as soon as possible after being alerted to these visits, she can help defend your constitutional rights through them. Be sure to remember that anything you say during these visits can be held against you, so it is best to say as little as possible without your lawyer present.

Learn How An Experienced Attorney Can Protect Your Parental Rights

With an office in Holland, Kendra Ortega, PLC, serves clients in Grand Rapids and throughout the surrounding areas of Michigan. To schedule your initial consultation, contact the firm online or call 616-369-7566.