The government has many roles in our day to day lives, ranging from building roads to providing emergency services. The Department of Child Protection and Permanency (formerly known as the Division of Youth and Family Services) exists to try to protect children. While there are many avenues available to DYFS/DCPP to help families and children, one method they may use is removal of your children. To protect your children and your family, you should discuss the issues with your family law attorney and have an understanding of some of the reasons why DYFS/DCPP could try to remove your children.
Drug abuse, including prescription drug abuse, is a serious problem in this country, and New Jersey is no exception. Abusing drugs means that you cannot provide adequate supervision and care for your children. As a result, your children could be neglected or injured while you are incapacitated. If you are abusing drugs in a way that endangers your child, DYFS/DCPP could try to remove your children.
Everyone knows that children get injured as they grow up, ranging from a scraped knee to a broken arm. That said, there are some very specific injuries that can be indicative of child abuse. For example, spiral fractures are often identified by experts as being a result of a physical abuse from adults.
Injury of Another Child
Many parents understand that DYFS/DCPP may remove your child if that child is physically injured. What many do not realize, however, is that your child can be removed if either parent has seriously injured another child in the past. For example, if the father of your child was convicted of abusing a child from another relationship, DYFS/DCPP may try to remove any other children you and that man have together.
Financial hard times can visit any family, and if the only issue is having a hard time making ends meet, then DYFS/DCPP will not have a reason to take your children. If the financial crisis results in neglect or abuse, then DYFS/DCPP may have reason to get involved. Some examples could be homelessness, lack of working utilities, or lack of food.
Mental illness is not uncommon and it is laudable to seek treatment. Millions of people a year seek treatment through therapy or medication. If your mental illness results in neglect or abuse of your children, DYFS/DCPP may try to remove your children. Keep in mind that it is not the illness itself that would result in removal, but rather the behavior that is a result of the illness.
Failure to Seek Medical Treatment
While most children will make it through their childhood without a serious life-threatening illness or serious injury. Even when a child does become very ill, it can be difficult to tell when it is time to seek immediate medical treatment. DYFS/DCPP may try to remove your children if your child is seriously ill or injured and you fail to seek medical treatment. In other words, if your child has the measles or a broken arm and you fail to take the child to a doctor, the government may try to intervene.
Lack of Proper Supervision
Parents have wide latitude when assessing their children’s maturity and abilities. That said, if your children are so young that they cannot provide appropriate care for themselves, leaving that child alone could result in removal. For example, leaving a five-year-old alone while you go grocery shopping would likely not be looked upon kindly by DYFS/DCPP.
We can help
We have extensive experience helping our clients in cases against DYFS/DCPP. Contact us today for a consultation if DYFS/DCPP is trying to intervene in your family life.