The Internet is flooded with sites detailing CPS scare tactics. Likewise, you may have spoken with friends or family who’ve dealt with CPS and heard their horror stories of being treated like child abusers from the start. True, CPS agencies have been known to employ specific tactics when dealing with parents. Some are used to elicit information the parents may be withholding. Others are used to figure out whether there is a history of abuse in the family. Whatever the reason, CPS caseworkers can use tactics many would say are unfair to build a case against the parents they investigate. But not all caseworkers have ulterior motives, so it’s important to be able to distinguish between acceptable and dishonest caseworker behavior.
CPS can often get away with using scare tactics against parents because it has power. CPS has a responsibility to protect the children of New Jersey from harm. To do this, they have the authority to remove children from the home and place them in foster care. For parents, the threat of separation alone is an effective method of coercion. Caseworkers may threaten to take a child away unless a parent confesses to the allegation or signs a voluntary safety plan. They may also make deceptive promises about the case and the parent’s involvement with CPS.
The ultimate goal for many of these tactics is to make the caseworker’s job easier. Indeed, some may harbor other motives—such as revenge or rebellion against the system—but the majority are simply trying to process their large caseload. Getting a parent to admit to the allegations is a sure fire way to wrap up a case quicker. Likewise, threatening parents to get information can make the investigation easier, requiring less work on the part of the caseworker.
Now that you know why caseworkers employ scare tactics, you can use this information to help you resist such strategies. CPS does have some authority over you and your family, but you also have rights as a parent. Speaking with an attorney is the best way to learn about your rights. And you should arm yourself with that knowledge whenever dealing with CPS, scare tactics or not. A knowledgeable—and savvy—New Jersey child abuse defense attorney can help you protect your rights and deal with intimidating caseworkers so you can keep your family safe.
If you are under investigation for child abuse, the Williams Law Group, LLC is here to help. The experienced child abuse defense attorneys at Williams Law Group, LLC can help you achieve reunification. Located in Short Hills, New Jersey, Williams Law Group, LLC provides compassionate and dedicated legal services to Union, Bergen, Essex, Hudson, Morris, Monmouth, and Middlesex counties, and the surrounding areas. Our knowledgeable attorneys handle divorce and family law, child custody, and child abuse/neglect cases. Call our office at (908) 810-1083, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org, or contact us through our confidential online form to schedule a consultation and ultimately get you connected with an experienced New Jersey divorce and child custody attorney.