The Illinois Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS) reports that 125,000 children are victims of abuse or neglect in the state of Illinois on an annual basis, and that one in five children will become a victim of abuse before they reach 18 years of age. In the midst of contentious divorce proceedings, or even long after a divorce has been finalized, it is not uncommon for DCFS cases to arise against one or both parents. Whether your former spouse, a neighbor, an acquaintance, or another family member makes a claim against you as a parent, any child abuse or neglect accusation can be life-altering and have far-reaching negative consequences on the entire family.
Protecting Yourself and Your Family
Allegations of the mistreatment of your child are a grave matter, as they not only affect the relationship you share but also your child’s current and future mental health. The threat of such detrimental effects on your family leaves you with no choice but to address the allegations head-on. If you believe you are facing embellished or fabricated claims about your parenting, consider the following actions to better protect your family:
Familiarize yourself with common signs of abuse or neglect – Understanding the kinds of accusations that lead to DCFS cases can be the first step in defending yourself against embellished claims. DCFS classifies the mistreatment of a child in a range of different categories. Whereas abuse can be physical, sexual, or emotional, and is considered anything that results in the injury or potential injury of a child, neglect is considered a parent’s failure to provide the most basic necessities for a child, such as adequate shelter, food, supervision, or medical care.
Let your attorney do the talking for you – When it comes to talking to a DCFS investigator, your words have the power to work for or against you, which is why it is imperative to let your attorney speak on your behalf. Experienced family law attorneys are familiar with the nature of child abuse and neglect cases and with the standard DCFS procedures, rules, and regulations. They are also familiar with the strategies and tactics that DCFS may use to build their cases.
Know and exercise your rights – Another benefit to working with a seasoned family law attorney with experience in DCFS cases is the invaluable resources you will have at your disposal. Knowing your parental rights and how to exercise them is your most powerful weapon when it comes to protecting yourself and the well-being of your child. In many cases, working with a professional who knows how to properly investigate a case and represent you in a court of law is all it takes to turn your entire case around.
Contact a DuPage County Family Law Attorney
The moment you are confronted with accusations of hurting your child in some way, you need to contact a knowledgeable Illinois family law attorney. Do not wait until the situation escalates, and do not give DCFS any more ammunition against you. Remain civil, respectful, and cooperative. Allow a qualified Lombard, IL DCFS lawyer to speak on your behalf and protect your rights and the best interests of your family. Schedule a consultation with A. Traub & Associates by calling our office today at 630-426-0196.