If you are facing a juvenile dependency case than a quality attorney is essential. The law generally heavily favors the right of the parents when it comes to child custody or any rulings concerning the child when these rulings do involve a parent, and while the goal of courts in these cases, of the social workers who help children in need, and the lawyer that represents the children, is to ensure the safety of children, the onus of proof of neglect, endangerment, or abuse falls heavily on those representing the children in potential danger. Without a lawyer it may be nearly impossible to get these children out of a dangerous situation, even if it is a close relative who is vying for custody.
Juvenile dependency is a broad term which simply means on whom the child depends on, as in the eyes of the law all children are dependent. Attorneys are needed in a wide range of child custody cases, but the majority of these may be in between two parents. Here however juvenile dependency refers specifically to the cases where current parents are guardians may be putting the children in danger, either in an abusive situation, an unsafe situation, or general neglect where the child or children are not being cared for.