Friday, May 23, 2014

June is National Reunification Month! Nominate a Reunification Hero

June is National Reunification Month.  A number of national organizations are working together to help organize National Reunification Month, including the American Bar Association National Project to Improve Representation for Parents Involved in the Child Welfare System, the ABA Center on Children and the Law, the Annie E. Casey Foundation, Casey Family Programs, the National Association of Counsel for Children, the National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges, The National Center for State Courts, the National Foster Care Coalition and the National Quality Improvement Center on Non-Resident Fathers and the Child Welfare System.  To learn more, visit HERE.

The ABA seeking nominations of parents, professionals and youth that have made heroic reunification efforts. A number of nominees will have their stories written up and published HERE.

The hope is that these stories can celebrate these important individuals and that these stories will bring positive attention to the successes of child welfare, promote quality practices and lead to constructive discussions about systemic needs.

Nominations can be submitted HERE.

Friday, May 9, 2014

Medical Mimics of Child Abuse

Louis Milot, a parental defense attorney of Peoria, Illinois, has compiled a list of medical mimics of child abuse.  This information goes along very well with the presentation that we heard from Dr. Christine Campbell at the annual conference in April.

Mr. Milot has graciously allowed us to share it with you.  Here is his introduction to the list, which can be downloaded HERE.
Due to frustration with our local child abuse pediatrician's inability or unwillingness to provide neutral and objective reports or testimony, I have undertaken to compile a non-exhaustive list of medical mimics of child abuse/neglect which I am constantly trying to keep updated.  At minimum, it can operate as a checklist for purposes of cross-examination of the State's paid "expert."  In the interest of advancing the cause of better diagnosis and helping parent's attorneys, I attach a copy.  Since every situation is unique, there is no substitute for retaining your own expert.  Therefore, I believe that the next list ought to consist of experts on the various conditions on this list that would be available to testify.  Anyone interested in starting such a reference list?
Partial credit should be given to Michael Segal M.D., PhD from whose article Mr. Milot gathered some of the information and to Michelle Weidner who assisted in the compilation.

Thank you to Mr. Milot for sharing the list!  If you have any questions you can contact Mr. Milot at

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

New from DCFS: HomeWorks

Over the next few years, Utah's DCFS is rolling out a new evidence-based in-home services program called HomeWorks.  If you are in Clearfield, Bountiful or Brigham City, efforts are already underway to implement the program.  The Southwest region of Utah will see the program begin in November 2014.  Salt Lake, the Western and Eastern Regions will be in 2015 through 2016.  

The flyer below sets forth the details of the program.  You can also download a copy HERE.  If you have questions you can contact Kevin Jackson at

Monday, May 5, 2014

Spotlight: Justin Caplin

I'm Justin Caplin and practice in Utah County with Moody Brown Law doing family law and parental defense. I share a portion of a conflict contract here, primarily in American Fork and Orem juvenile courts.

I am a new attorney, been practicing for just under a year, and I really enjoy the parental defense work that I do.  With divorces I am helping to divide a family. With parental defense cases I feel like I am working with already severely broken families and trying to help them build and piece the family back together.

One case that I have enjoyed is with a father that had only seen his daughter a couple times in the past couple years.  After DCFS got involved, we've worked together to help him reestablish that relationship with her and begin to enjoy more frequent and regular parent time with his daughter.