DCPP Appeals in Livingston
After being falsely accused of abusing your children, you should take every effort possible to get immediate legal counsel. If the Division of Child Protection and Permanency (DCPP) has removed your child from your care, you have the right to defend yourself in a Superior Court action. However, your children may remain in protective custody either in foster care or with relatives, pending the outcome of the court case.
A skilled attorney could be an invaluable ally throughout this process. For help with DCPP appeals in Livingston, contact the Williams Law Group today. When your relationship with your children is at stake, you deserve dedicated legal representation.
How to Appeal a DCPP Decision in Livingston
There are four possible findings for a Division investigation into allegations of child abuse or neglect. Three of these outcomes allow for appeals. In these situations, it is crucial for accused parents to seek nearby legal representation and appeal the decision, as a child abuse finding can have long-lasting consequences.
Appealing Substantiated and Established Findings of Abuse
For substantiated or established findings of abuse or neglect, an appeal would be made to the Office of Administrative Law. These appeals must be filed within 20 days of receiving the finding letter from the Division. Additionally, the appeals process will lead to a trial where the Division has the burden of proof to show that abuse or neglect actually occurred.
Having an attorney during this process is essential because a lawyer understands the court rules. A skilled attorney knows how to present evidence and cross-examine witnesses, which is critical in fighting the Division’s case.
Appeals for Not Established Findings of Child Abuse
An accused person can also appeal a “not established” finding. This essentially means that while the Division did not find enough evidence of abuse or neglect, they did find a risk of harm for the child. This decision can be appealed directly to the Division within 20 days of receiving the letter in order to rebut the Division’s finding. If the Division does not change its finding after the initial appeal, an accused person can then appeal that finding to the Appellate Division within 45 days of receiving the final determination letter from the Division.
Although this finding may seem less pressing than an established or substantiated one, it is still crucial to enlist a lawyer’s help and immediately appeal the decision. A dedicated local attorney could help demonstrate what happened in the investigation and why the Division overstepped on their case.
Consult a Lawyer on DCPP Appeals in Livingston
If you are under investigation by DCPP, it is important to work with an experienced attorney who handles child welfare matters. A lawyer can help ensure that your side is represented and clear up any misunderstandings that may occur during the investigation. However, if you receive a negative outcome to your DCPP case, you also have the right to appeal the decision.
To protect the rights of you and your family, work with a skilled lawyer on your appeals case. At the Williams Law Group, our legal team is experienced with DCPP appeals in Livingston and can give your family the necessary tools to reach a positive outcome. Legal assistance can also be key in resolving your case in a timely manner, so reach out today to get started.