Code of the District of Columbia

§ 16–2308. Initial appearance.

The initial appearance, before a judge assigned to the Division, of a child named in a delinquency or need of supervision petition or of the parent, guardian, or custodian of a child named in a neglect petition shall be at the time set forth in the summons, which shall be not later than five days after the petition has been filed. At the initial appearance, the child and his parent, guardian, or custodian shall be advised of the contents of the petition and of the right to counsel as provided in section 16-2304 . At the initial appearance the child, or in neglect cases the parent, guardian, or custodian, may admit or deny the allegations in the petition, but it shall not be necessary at the initial appearance for the Corporation Counsel to establish probable cause to believe that the allegations in the petition are true. At the initial appearance, the judge may set the time for the fact-finding hearing or continue the matter until a later time. Failure to hold the initial appearance at the time specified shall not be grounds for dismissal of the petition. This section shall not apply in any case where, prior to or at the time of the initial appearance, a detention or shelter care hearing is required by section 16-2312 .