Question for Attorney Carbone: DCPP Took My Child Away! But Why?
Question: I have a history of substance abuse but I’ve been clean for the past year. However, my ex-boyfriend, who shares custody of our four-year-old daughter, still thinks I’m on drugs. I had a few friends over who were drinking and carrying on when my ex showed up with our daughter. He had an emergency at work and couldn’t take her that night. A few days later, there’s a knock on my door and it’s the DCPP. They proceeded to take my child away! I think it was my ex’s doing, but I’m not sure. How can I find out the reason they took her away from me? How can I get her back? Please help!
Answer: Before answering this questions, there are a few things you should know about the Division of Child Protection and Permanency before we answer this question. The DCPP’s responsibility is to investigate any allegations of child abuse and neglect. This means if someone has accused you of abusing your child, the department has the power to remove your child from your care. Investigators will come to your home unannounced to interview you and to investigate your home life to see it it’s safe for the child to live there. It does not need a warrant to take your child away from you and yes, investigators can take your child away after just the first investigation.
The agency won’t just come knocking because of your history of substance abuse. Chances are someone had called the local office or the Child Abuse Hot Line to report child abuse in your case. Unfortunately, you won’t be able to know the identity of who that person was.
However, the DCPP will not take away the child unless its investigation turns up evidence of abuse or neglect or the investigators believe the child is in danger. This means if your child was taken from you, then the investigators had enough evidence that shows you have been neglecting your daughter. Your child will be placed in foster care until the matter is resolved.
We strongly urge you or anyone who has a similar case, to contact an experienced DCPP defense lawyer to assist you with your case. Contact the Law Offices of Anthony Carbone today for a free consultation.