UNIVERSITY OF MISSOURI-KANSAS CITY

SCHOOL OF LAW

CHILD & FAMILY SERVICES CLINIC

5100 Rockhill Road

Kansas City, Missouri 64110

(816)  235-6336

 (816)  235-6582 (Fax)

 

 

What is the Child & Family Services Clinic?

 

 

            The UMKC Child & Family Services Clinic is a free legal service for parents, relatives and custodians needing assistance to obtain custodial orders to achieve permanency for children.  Qualified law students, under the supervision of a Clinical Director who is a member of the Missouri and Kansas Bar, provide legal services in areas such as:

 

·        Probate Guardianship

·        Adoption

·        Paternity, Child Custody, Support and Visitation

·        Divorce

·        Modifications

 

In this clinic law students have the opportunity to establish an attorney-client relationship and practice all the skills they will need to be successful practitioners in a supervised, “protective” environment.  The student attorneys enter into employment agreements with clients, conduct factual investigations, develop case strategies, prepare written discovery, study relevant substantive and procedural law, draft and file pleadings, prepare witnesses and present evidence in actual court hearings. Students also have an opportunity to learn what happens after the hearing by advising clients of relevant appeal issues and timeframes, taking steps to effectuate the court’s orders (eg. income assignments for child support), preparing proposed judgments and sending closing letters with case documents to their clients.

 

Clinic students will learn about Missouri’s child protection system and the juvenile court.  Students will receive additional training from allied experts in  domestic violence, drug testing, and public entitlement programs.   The Child & Family Services Clinic also partners with area agencies to present programs as part of Kansas City’s observance of Child Abuse Awareness Month in April each year.   

 

Referrals for legal services come from community partners with the UMKC Child & Family Services Clinic such as the Missouri Children’s Division,

the Jackson County Juvenile Office, the Office of the Guardian ad Litem, CASA, Legal Aid of Western Missouri, Children’s Mercy Hospital and members of the Missouri Bar. 

 

          For questions, please call the clinic office at (816) 235-6336.

 

 

Links:

Text of the Federal Child Welfare Law (Titiles IV-B and IV-E), as Amended by the New Adoption and Safe Families Act

 

Guidelines for Public Policy and State Legislation Governing Permanence for Children (from Children's Bureau of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services)