Length of a Connecticut DCF Ongoing Services Case

  • Most often, Connecticut DCF involvement into your family starts with an investigation.
  • At the end of an investigation, DCF can substantiate findings of abuse or neglect against you.
  • While the investigation is limited to 45 days, DCF can remain involved with your family for months and months by mandating that you participate in “ongoing services.”
  • If Connecticut DCF finished its investigation into your family and now wants to stay involved, reach out to an experienced CT DCF defense lawyer for help.

How Long is a DCF Investigation in Connecticut?

A DCF Investigation, whether it’s a Family Assessment Response or a full intake / investigation, will conclude in 45-days.

How does a Connecticut DCF Investigation End?

If DCF conducted a full investigation, it will determine whether to substantiate findings of abuse or neglect against you, and whether to place your name on its Central Registry of people it believes pose a risk to children. You’ll get a closing letter with the DCF findings and will have a right to appeal DCF’s decisions. If DCF conducted a Family Assessment Response, you will get a closing letter, which may offer additional services. Either way, at that point the DCF investigation / intake phase is over.

What Happens after a DCF Investigation?

In addition to potential appeal proceedings, DCF may try to stay in your family’s lives with its “ongoing services,” which take place after the actual investigation ends. Even if nothing was substantiated against you, or even if your case was only a Family Assessment Response, DCF can still try to impose ongoing services on your family.

What are DCF Ongoing Services?

Connecticut DCF’s ongoing services are essentially continued monitoring by a new DCF social worker. This treatment social worker will want to come out, re-interview every member of your family, and will tell you that DCF is working on a case plan for your family. This Case Plan will typically take a month to create and will contemplate services for your family over 3 to 6 additional months – or even longer. For more on ongoing services, click here.

Do I have to Participate in DCF’s Ongoing Services?

Not necessarily. While DCF will want your whole family to engage in treatment and other services, the DCF treatment social worker alone cannot force you to. However, especially in cases that it considers more high risk, DCF will file a neglect petition in Superior Court, get the Connecticut Attorney General’s Office involved, and seek a court order from a judge, who does have the power to order you to participate in services and continue to allow DCF into your home.

How can I End DCF’s Ongoing Services?

A top Connecticut DCF defense attorney can work to get your family out of DCF’s ongoing services case by helping you show DCF that your family is fine without additional services. While you don’t want a neglect petition filed against you in court, you also don’t want DCF to be coming to your home for months and months. An experienced attorney can negotiate with DCF regarding the length of the proposed case plan, more appropriate service providers, or help you opt-out of certain services by showing that you don’t need them.

Call an Experienced Connecticut DCF Defense Attorney Today

A DCF investigation in Connecticut is stressful enough, even before DCF attempts to continue with ongoing services. If you’re being investigated, or if Connecticut’s Department of Children & Families is trying to remain involved in your life through ongoing services, contact experienced DCF attorneys who can work to get DCF out of your life as quickly as possible. You can see our hundreds of reviews from past clients here. Then call us today.

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