The Duty of Childcare Providers
New Jersey childcare providers offer an essential service to parents. They are entrusted to keep children in their care safe from harm. They even receive training on how to identify and report suspected abuse or neglect. Indeed, childcare providers along with schools are the top sources of child abuse referrals. The role of childcare providers in CPS investigations typically starts with the report.
When CPS Turns to Childcare Providers
Childcare providers are required to report signs of child abuse or neglect. Someone who knowingly fails to report child abuse in New Jersey can be charged with being a disorderly person. But childcare providers can also lose their job and potentially their license. For this reason, most childcare providers err on the side of caution and are quick to report any signs of abuse or neglect they see. Unfortunately, sometimes they’re wrong about their suspicions. Once they report child abuse, however, New Jersey’s CPS agency (DCP&P, formerly the DYFS) has to look into the referral. This can involve asking the provider more questions and even talking to your child when in their care.
DCP&P also contacts childcare providers when investigating allegations as these professionals spend a lot of time near the children and are sometimes best able to identify signs of child abuse and neglect. They are not under a confidentiality agreement and are obligated to cooperate with investigations as part of their job. They must answer questions truthfully and honestly. You might still have contact with your child’s childcare provider even while under investigation. But remember they have probably dealt with DCP&P before in their line of work. If they make a report, it’s because they are concerned about your child’s health and safety.
Knowing Where the Information Comes From
If DCP&P has contacted you about allegations, it will not disclose who made the report. It’s a good idea, however, to consult with an experienced New Jersey child abuse defense attorney if you have any questions about your rights. You do have a right to know what the child abuse allegations are. DCP&P must also make reasonable efforts to keep your family together. Sometimes being aware of your rights can help you keep your family together. It also helps to know whom DCP&P will contact to get information about your family, and an attorney can explain that as well.
If you need child abuse defense in New Jersey, the Williams Law Group, LLC is here to help. The experienced child welfare attorneys at Williams Law Group, LLC can help you defend your rights and help keep your family whole. 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.