Connecticut DCF Investigation for Leaving Child Alone in the Car

  • No matter the time of year or the reason, leaving your kids alone in the car could result in a DCF investigation.
  • You can also get arrested for a couple of different criminal offenses like risk of injury or leaving a child unsupervised.
  • You have a right to be heard in both a DCF and criminal investigation.
  • If you have been arrested for or are being investigated by DCF a dedicated lawyer can help you.

What If My Kid Was Only Alone for a Few Minutes?

It does not matter how long you left your child in the car, if the police are called or DCF receives a tip you can face investigation by the Department of Children and Families. This Department investigates all kinds of allegations of child abuse and neglect, and they take their duty seriously. After a report of a child alone in the car, DCF will initiate an investigation pretty quickly. To learn more about the process of a DCF Investigation click here.Throughout the investigation DCF will want to visit with you and your child and check the general welfare of the child amongst other things.

How Is DCF Different From Criminal Court?

Separate and in addition to DCF investigations, leaving your child unsupervised in a car could lead to an arrest for felony Risk of Injury to a Minor under C.G.S. § 53-21 or misdemeanor Leaving a Child Unsupervised in a Motor Vehicle under C.G.S. § 53-21a. You will need to report to a Connecticut Superior Court and appear before a prosecutor and a judge. To learn more about the criminal charges associated with leaving your child in a car, follow this link.

I Was Only Trying to Protect My Child, How Can I Defend Myself?

Given the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic it is understandable to think that having your child stay in the car while you run into the store quickly is a safe move. However, the law does not give much credence to your reasoning, at least at first. Whether you left your child in the car because you didn’t want to expose them to the pandemic, or because they were 13 years old and didn’t want to run into the pharmacy with you, a defense lawyer could help put context around the situation to both DCF and the prosecutor. Factors like climate control in the car, child locks, the length of time you were away, and the reasoning behind you leaving the child alone can all go a long way in resolving a DCF case.

Is it Even Worth Fighting a DCF Case?

Yes! Even though DCF cannot sentence you to prison or force you to pay fines, protecting your name and reputation should be motivation enough to fight vigorously. The last thing you need is DCF’s continued presence in your life through ongoing services, or a substantiation finding against you. Depending on your job that can cause problems in the future, and further rolling over to DCF could negatively impact a criminal case. Your name is extremely important and it is advisable, especially in cases of leaving your child alone in the car for a short period of time, to fight to keep it clean.

Call A Skilled DCF Defense Attorney Today

While this may all seem overwhelming, you can fight a Connecticut DCF investigation for leaving your child alone in the car and the help of a lawyer could be crucial. The attorneys at Mark Sherman Law are ready and willing to fight for you, just read the hundreds of 5-star reviews on To begin building a defense give us a call today.

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