• An Emergency Custody Order (ECO) petition may be filed by any interested person.
  • Separate petitions shall be filed for each child.   All siblings’ files will be assigned to the same judge.
  • There is no filing fee.
  • You can obtain these forms in the Family Court department of the Circuit Clerk’s Office or click the links below.

Juvenile Dependency/Neglect or Abuse
Emergency Custody Order Affidavit

  • If there is not an allegation of dependency, neglect, and/or abuse, an ECO is not the correct route. See child custody.
  • There will be a decision made by the judge on all ECO’s by the end of business day in which the petition was filed.
  • Whether the ECO is granted or denied, you may be given a court date.
  • Information requested to complete ECO/DNA petitions:
    • Child’s name, sex, race, date of birth and/or social security number.
    • Parent/custodian’s addresses, in order for service. (You don’t have to have these to file. If you do not have all information, the petition will still be processed; however, it is helpful to be prepared.)
  • A copy of the petition and summons, and an emergency custody order, if any, shall be served upon parents or persons exercising custodial control or supervision or an individual awarded legal custody by a court under the law of this state.  It may be served by any person authorized to serve process except the state child protective service agency.
  • Confidentiality – Unless specified to the contrary, all juvenile court records generated by any agency are deemed confidential and shall not be disclosed except to:
    • a. Child;
    • b. Child’s parent/guardian or spouse; and
    • c. Victims or other persons authorized to attend a juvenile court hearing, unless ordered by the Court for good cause.
  • Release of child’s treatment, medical, mental or psychological records is prohibited unless presented as evidence in Court.
  • No person, including school personnel, shall access juvenile records or further disclose information from such records except as permitted by specific Court order.
  • KRS 610.340(1)(c) prohibits the disclosure of any records resulting from the child’s prior abuse and neglect under Title IV-B of the Federal Social Security Act to victims or other persons authorized to attend a juvenile court hearing pursuant to KRS 610.070.

If you believe a child is dependent, neglected, and/or abused, you may contact the Cabinet for Health and Family Services @859-292-6340, if you do not wish to file a petition yourself.

Additional Forms for Dependency, Neglect, Abuse(DNA)
Affidavit of Indigency

***Reminder – Our office is prohibited from providing legal advice. You may contact the Northern Kentucky Bar Association (Lawyer Referral Service) @ (859781-1525 or Legal Aid of the Bluegrass (Civil Legal Assistance) @ (859) 431-8200, or contact a private attorney for further information.