10 Common Legal Mistakes Parents Of Children with Special Needs Make, But Can Avoid


When I decided to start a blog about special education legal issues, one of the main things I hoped to accomplish was to give parents of children with disabilities information which would help them understand their rights and the rights of their children under the IDEA.  I happen to believe that one of the best ways to learn is through our mistakes, and I have seen (and made) many in my special education law practice in Connecticut.  In almost every interview I conduct with a prospective client, there comes a moment where they tell me something that makes me wince a little bit, because it is a mistake that could present an obstacle to success in their case.  Here are some of the most common.  The good news is:  you can avoid or fix most of them.

Common Mistake #1:  Refusing Permission to Evaluate

Common Mistake #2:  Saying You Want the “Best” Program

Common Mistake #3:  Shutting the Door on Public Schooling

Common Mistake #4:  Not Understanding the Difference Between Medical and Educational

Common Mistake #5:  Not Telling the School Important Information

Common Mistake #6:  Insulting the Staff

Common Mistake #7:  Signing Things You Don’t Understand

Common Mistake #8:  Hiring Outside Professionals who Don’t Understand Special Ed Issues

Common Mistake #9:  Withholding Outside Evaluations

Common Mistake #10:  Not Notifying the School of Private Schooling or Services