Norwalk DCF Investigations Lawyer
If you are under investigation by the Connecticut Department of Children and Families (DCF), you should contact a Norwalk DCF investigations lawyer as soon as possible. A top criminal defense attorney experienced in handling DCF investigation cases could help protect your rights and work toward a positive outcome.
What Prompts a DCF Investigation?
Many DCF investigations begin with an anonymous report through a hotline.
In addition, the DCF receives reports submitted by professionals considered “mandated reporters” under state law. This category, which includes teachers and doctors, consists of individuals who frequently work with children. If they see signs of abuse and fail to report it, they may face criminal charges. Accordingly, many of them may err on the side of caution and report suspected neglect or abuse, even if the evidence is limited.
DCF also launches investigations when family members have been arrested in connection with a domestic violence episode if children were present or nearby.
What is the Process of a DCF Investigation?
After receiving a report, the DCF is required to begin an investigation, within a few hours in some cases, if there is a chance that children may be danger of imminent harm. Part of the investigation includes inspecting the home and interviewing family members, including children. The investigation lasts for 45 days.
Investigators often show up without warning. However, the family under investigation may request that a meeting be scheduled for a mutually convenient time in the future. If possible, it is helpful to have a Norwalk DCF investigations lawyer present during interviews. An attorney can stop questioning if it becomes unnecessarily invasive and prevent someone from making statements against their own interest.
Should I Sign a Safety Plan or Service Agreement?
It is wise to obtain advice from a DCF lawyer before agreeing to sign any documents. While it may seem like no harm could come from signing a safety plan, it is important to carefully consider all ramifications of the agreement because it is a legally binding contract. Failure to abide by any of the terms will constitute a breach, and that could be used as evidence of neglect or abuse within the family.
An Experienced Norwalk DCF Investigations Attorney Can Help
There are numerous benefits to working with an experienced Norwalk DCF investigations lawyer. A knowledgeable attorney could advise you about what to expect during the process and how to protect your rights.
A DCF investigations attorney understands how the agency operates and can help you determine just how far to go in cooperating with requests for information. To learn more about how a DCF investigations attorney could help you reach a positive outcome, call Mark Sherman Law.