The Right to Cross-Examine Social Workers In California

In In re C.J.W. (2007) 157 Cal.App.4th 1075, the Court held the juvenile court did not violate the parents' procedural due process rights in refusing to allow them to cross-examine the social workers and present unspecified evidence in addition to the documentary evidence they presented in support of their petition. Thus, in C.J.W. the Court received written evidence and heard argument from counsel for the parties. (C.J.W., supra, 157 Cal.App.4th at pp. 1080-1081.) Furthermore, the parents in C.J.W. failed to identify what additional evidence they wanted to present, and a fair reading of the record showed the juvenile court denied the parents' petition based on the "paucity of evidence" supporting it rather than on information or hearsay statements provided by the social workers. Thus, the hearing in C.J.W., as conducted by the juvenile court, comported with due process. (Id. at p. 1081.)