Why is DCF Charging me with Physical Neglect?

  • In Connecticut, the Department of Children & Families, or "DCF" investigates reports of child abuse and neglect.
  • DCF will decide whether to substantiate allegations against you at the end of a full investigation.
  • Physical neglect is extremely broad under DCF's laws.
  • If DCF shows up at your door, remember that you have the right to lawyer every step of the way. Don't hesitate to contact a top DCF defense attorney.
What is Physical Neglect in Connecticut DCF Investigations?

As any of the best DCF defense attorneys will tell you, "physical neglect" can refer to so many different things under Department of Children and Family regulations. Essentially, if you're accused of failing to provide proper care or attention to your child, DCF agents can investigate you for physical neglect. This definition is extremely broad and allows DCF to often substantiate allegations of physical neglect against Connecticut parents.

What does DCF look for in a Home?

If DCF workers are investigating you for physical neglect, they'll be looking around your home to see if you have adequate food, housing, and clothing. They might look to see if there are substance abuse issues, psychiatric problems, violence, or an unsafe living environment in your home that are having an alleged impact on your child. Obviously, many of these categories of "evidence" are very subjective. Click here for how an experienced CT DCF defense attorney can help defend you against such broad allegations.

Can DCF Show Up at my House Unannounced?

Unfortunately, not only is DCF allowed to show up unannounced, but it's often the way you first learn that you're under investigation. Top DCF attorneys in Connecticut will tell you that, once a report is received, DCF agents typically have 12-72 hours to make contact with you and your family. If a DCF investigator shows up at your door, make sure to contact an attorney experienced in Connecticut DCF investigations who can make sure that your rights are protected.

Can I Appeal a DCF Physical Neglect Decision?

Yes, you can. If DCF does a full investigation into you and your family, you'll get a letter at the end of it. The letter will tell you whether DCF is substantiating allegations of abuse or neglect against you and will let you know whether DCF will place your name on its Central Registry. You and your DCF appeal attorney have only a limited period of time to file your appeal paperwork and request a DCF Internal Review of your case, so make sure you get in touch with a DCF lawyer right when you receive the letter, if you haven't already.

Should I Hire a Lawyer for a DCF Investigation in Connecticut?

Yes. Remember that DCF investigators are state agents. Nothing you say to them is confidential and everything can be used against you in court. An experienced DCF attorney can work to get your case closed and DCF out of your home as soon as possible. Just as important, your DCF lawyer can be with you at and help you through every phase of the investigation.

Get in Touch with a DCF Defense Lawyer Today

Remember, it doesn't take much for DCF to try to substantiate allegations of child abuse or neglect against you. Make sure you consult with an experienced DCF attorney and fully understand your rights prior to speaking to DCF. You can see hundreds of reviews from past clients who worked with our team at Mark Sherman Law here. Then give us a call today at (203) 358-4700.

Client Reviews
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I found Mark Sherman after doing an extensive search for DCF attorneys on the internet. He is without a doubt the most honest and straightforward attorney I have ever met. Rather than trying to push us towards an expensive engagement he quickly addressed our issue with a recommended course of action. My wife and I left his office feeling much better and confident in our situation. His fee was well worth the investment and I highly recommend his services. Robert E.
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