Questions about Child Abuse Cases in Short Hills
Child abuse allegations are difficult for everyone involved. These accusations are typically investigated by the Division of Child Protection and Permanency (DCPP) in New Jersey, an agency which many people do not fully understand. As such, it is important to consult a knowledgeable attorney if you and your family are dealing with abuse or neglect allegations. At the Williams Law Group, our lawyers could answer your questions about child abuse cases in Short Hills and help you better understand what to expect.
Is Supervised Visitation Required for Alleged Child Abuse?
Supervised visitation is not required any time DCPP files an action. In fact, the regulations that govern DCPP state that visitation is to be unsupervised and unrestricted unless there is a reason otherwise. Therefore, any time the Division seeks supervised visitation, they must notify you and provide an explanation. The court will only order a restriction based on facts and conclusions of law.
However, if you have court-ordered supervision while visiting your children, it may only be temporary. It is common for the Division to review the issue of supervised visitation as you make progress in the legal process. If the Division offers you services, you should consult with your attorney as to whether accepting those services is the fastest route to gaining unsupervised time with your child.
What is the Child Abuse Registry?
The child abuse registry is a confidential list of names of those who have received substantiated findings for allegations of child abuse and neglect. The registry is maintained by the Department of Children and Families and is not accessible to the public except in a limited number of circumstances.
If your name is on the registry, you have a right to ask that a court review the matter to determine whether your name was appropriately placed there. This can occur during a trial, if the Division has taken the case to court, or by appealing through the Office of Administrative Law. Either way, you must take action to have your name removed from the list. A seasoned attorney could provide further information about having your name removed from the child abuse registry in Short Hills.
Will a Teacher Lose their Job for a Substantiated Child Abuse Finding?
If you are currently employed as a teacher, you will not automatically lose your job if you are substantiated for child abuse. However, there is cause for concern. Your employer does have the right to ask at any point in time that you consent to allow them to check the registry. They are not entitled by law to access the registry.
If you consent, they will then ask the Division to release that information. If you are substantiated, they may have cause for concern that you have committed an act of child abuse or neglect in your past, and therefore should not be employed in their school district. Anyone in this situation should consult a knowledgeable child abuse lawyer for more information on their specific circumstances.
Can I Get a Job at a School after Being Substantiated for Child Abuse?
If you have been substantiated for child abuse or neglect, you may have difficulty obtaining employment at a school. As a matter of law, school districts do not have an absolute right to check the registry. However, school districts do have the authority to ask you to consent to release information about your child abuse history.
If you do not tell the truth and they discover that your name is on the registry, you will most likely be terminated for being dishonest with your employer. If you do tell the truth and allow them to access the registry, you should give an explanation of what the circumstances were. It may or may not alleviate their concern that your name is on the registry. In any case, you should consult an attorney on your options for getting your name off of the registry if you have been substantiated for child abuse or neglect.
Can Religion Impact a Child Abuse or Neglect Case in Short Hills?
Religion can affect many allegations of child abuse or neglect in Short Hills. For example, parents may have certain religious beliefs regarding schooling and medical care for their children, which could ultimately have an impact on their case.
Situations in which a parent fails to provide necessary medical care due to the penance of a recognized religion’s beliefs are typically not considered child neglect by law. However, there is an exception if the failure to provide care would pose a threat to others in terms of communicable diseases and sanitation. Vaccinations are an example of a medical case that could warrant a religious exemption in Short Hills.
Call a Short Hills Attorney for More Information on Child Abuse Cases
If you or your child is involved in an ongoing investigation for abuse or neglect, reach out to a knowledgeable attorney for guidance throughout the process. These proceedings can be complex, overwhelming, and emotional, so it is important to have a dedicated legal advocate on your side. At the Williams Law Group, our experienced lawyers can answer your questions about child abuse cases in Short Hills, so contact us today.