Membership Terms and Conditions
Certification of Information. On behalf of your family, you attest to the following by submitting an application:
“I hereby certify that this application is complete and accurate and that we will contact Heritage Defense if any information changes. I have read and understand these Membership Terms and Conditions. I understand that providing false or misleading information is grounds for denial or termination of membership. I understand that approval of my application is subject to the discretion of Heritage Defense. I also understand that membership may be deactivated if we violate these Membership Terms and Conditions or otherwise engage in misconduct. Finally, I understand that the acronym CPS is used in these terms and elsewhere as shorthand for all government child protective services agencies, by whatever name or acronym.”
Home Educators. Currently, membership is open only to families whose minor children all receive the majority of their academic instruction at home, are not yet school-age, or are attending college.
Statement of Belief. Applicants must be professing Christians and substantially agree with our Statement of Belief:
“We proclaim that we are sinners in the sight of God the Father, justly deserving His wrath and without hope except for His sovereign mercy and grace; that we believe in the Lord Jesus Christ as the eternal Son of God, and God the Son; that He died for our sins, was buried and rose again on the third day; that we have been drawn by the Holy Spirit to trust in the Lord Jesus Christ as Savior, and have willingly identified with Christ. We further proclaim that the Bible is God’s infallible and inerrant Word; that it is the standard by which we will measure our lives and our conduct with one another.”
Foster Care System. Because foster care systems have mandates inconsistent with our work, parents fostering are not eligible for membership until involvement with the foster care system has concluded.
Active Membership. Your membership becomes active when your application is approved. If not approved, your contribution will not be processed. If your membership ever becomes inactive or you otherwise cease being eligible for membership, you will not be eligible for member benefits, including access to an attorney or representation, for situations that arise while inactive or otherwise ineligible.
Contributions. After your initial contribution, your card will be automatically charged each month or year, depending on your choice. Declined payments will result in your membership being deactivated if not remedied. For annual contributions, we will notify you of the upcoming payment approximately one month in advance.
No Charitable Deduction. Heritage Defense is a 501(c)(4) nonprofit legal advocacy organization. Membership dues are not deductible for federal income tax purposes.
Technology. You consent to our use of email, cell phones, and cloud-based services to communicate and store information.
Scope of Legal Representation; Not an Insurance Company. We are not an insurance company and cannot guarantee representation in every situation. However, subject to these terms and conditions, we intend to aid our members (and non-members in special cases) who experience wrongful CPS-related interference in the jurisdiction of their families.
Investigation. We reserve the right to conduct a preliminary investigation prior to initiating legal representation. We reserve the right to decline representation if, in our sole and absolute discretion, we believe that actual abuse, neglect, or other misconduct has occurred or is occurring, or that a conflict of interest exists. We condemn and will not defend child abuse.
Exclusions. Member benefits do not apply to circumstances including, but not limited to, matters arising from or involving:
- Facts occurring prior to the commencement of membership;
- Domestic disputes, divorce or related custody matters, extra-marital affairs, foster care, custody of other children (except with court-ordered legal guardianship), unfinalized adoptions involving CPS, or dissolving adoptions;
- Polygamy, civil unions, non-marital co-habitation, or non-heterosexual “marriages”;
- Affirming the rejection of a person’s biological sex;
- When you or another biological, step, or legal parent of your child is the direct or indirect source of a report to CPS;
- Grandparent rights or visitation suits; or
- Criminal allegations—if any are made against a parent, we will decline/terminate representation and advise hiring an attorney to handle both the criminal and CPS proceedings.
Cases. Without limiting anything else in these terms and conditions, we reserve the right to deny or withdraw from representation if (1) you insist upon pursuing an objective that we consider repugnant, imprudent, or with which we have fundamental disagreement, (2) you refuse or fail to follow advice or guidance, or (3) representation has been otherwise rendered unreasonably difficult by you. You also agree:
- To promptly contact us through our 24/7 emergency phone line as soon as your parental rights are threatened, but no later than immediately upon first contact by a government agent (if you choose to communicate with them or otherwise delay contacting us, you do so at your own risk);
- To be truthful with us and not misrepresent or conceal any facts when communicating with us, and to fully disclose any and all details relevant to your membership or case;
- To provide all information and papers requested by us and to cooperate fully in any proceedings, including but not limited to, attending meetings and hearings and participating in judicial or other proceedings that may arise;
- If a matter arises, not to communicate with a court, other parties, opposing attorneys, or with the news media about your matter without first consulting with us; and
- To maintain an active membership and keep your family’s information with us up to date, including your current address, phone number(s), and email address(es).