Dependency Court

A dependency referral is a referral regarding a child who is without parental care or control, subsistence, education as required by law, or other care or control necessary for one's physical, mental, or emotional health or morals; or who has been place for care or adoption in violation of law; or one who has been abandoned by parents or other legal custodian; or one who is without a parent, guardian, or custodian.

If you are a legal parent/legal guardian with a dependency case and would like to have an attorney appointed to represent you, please fill out an application and bring copies of pay stubs, etc. to prove income. Putative fathers (not legal/hasn't been ordered legitimate) are not parties to the case and are not entitled to an attorney. The Judge will review the application and make an order determining if you are entitled to court-appointed counsel. Forms for Dependency Court are available on the Clerk of Juvenile Court web page. If you are interested in the Legitimation Station Program, please visit

School and work excuses are provided to legal parties only. Please note, if you are a foster care or relative placement, the Court cannot provide you with an excuse for work. Please contact your DFCS case worker for assistance.

If you have a question regarding when you court date is, please contact your DFCS case manager or the Office of the Clerk of Juvenile Court.

The Columbus Consolidated Government center is a secure facility. All persons entering building will be required to pass through a metal detector and have hand-carried objects searched and scanned. Weapons of any kind are not permitted in the building.