Look For Ways To Make A Difference

Pattern and repetition breeds acceptance and complacency. It is perfectly acceptable and proper to challenge assumptions and interpretations of statutory language. Advocacy at its highest form does just that. The holdings of United States Supreme Court in the cases of Strickland v. Washington, 466 U.S. 668 (1984), and Cronic v. United States, 466 U.S. 648 (1984), require the attorneys for a parent in a DFPS case to put the State's case to "a meaningful adversarial testing". It is this threshold that inspired the ideas that a non-offending parent or a parent that did not abuse or neglect the particular child which was the subject of the litigation might not be able to be terminated under §161.001(1)(O). More recently the idea has surfaced as to whether DFPS can order an out-of-state indigent parent to perform services, at their own expense, if they provide the same services to indigent Texas parents. This is potentially a huge dilemma because DFPS can only provide services in Texas. The only limitations on the representation is the creativity and resourcefulness of counsel. It is my experience that when you work your cases, most judges will provide you with resources you need to do your job.