Appealing Decisions By The Illinois Department Of Children And Family Services (DCFS)
If a DCFS investigator has conducted an investigation and found credible evidence that you have abused or neglected a child, these indicated findings are not criminal charges. However, if you do not appeal, your name may remain on the State Central Register for five to 50 years, where you will be listed as an indicated perpetrator of child abuse and/or neglect. Although the list is confidential, this information would appear in background checks for types of employment such as:
- Child care
- Other occupations involving the care of children
Furthermore, if your home is found to be unsafe for your children, a DCFS investigator may ask you to agree to a safety plan and/or take your child(ren) into protective custody. Information gathered by DCFS may become evidence that the police could use to bring criminal charges against you.
Acting Quickly Is Critical To Defending Your Rights
The time to get a defense attorney involved in any DCFS case is as soon as you are aware of accusations. Anderson Attorneys & Advisors defends parents and other adults in Illinois at any stage of a relevant case, including:
- Before or during a DCFS investigation
- After a determination of indicated findings
- Before or after the removal of a child from a home
- At any stage of a criminal matter
If you have already been “indicated” as a perpetrator of child abuse or neglect, the clock is ticking and the time to act is now.
The DCFS Appeals Process
Time limits are critical as you seek to protect your good name, and, possibly, custody of your children and/or your continued employment in the child care field. If DCFS has made an indicated finding regarding your alleged child abuse or neglect, you have 60 days to file an appeal. DCFS must complete its administrative decision within 90 days of this filing. (If you are a child care worker, the decision must be completed within 35 days).
Our attorneys are former prosecutors who understand both sides of an issue. We know what is at stake. We will fight for the presumption of your innocence, whether you are a parent or a child caregiver.