What to do if Child Protective Services investigates you

On Behalf of | Jun 29, 2023 | Blog, Juvenile Dependency |

Finding out that Florida Child Protective Services has opened an investigation against you can be distressing and confusing. You may feel frightened or unsure of what steps to take next.

An investigation by CPS does not automatically mean that you will lose custody of your child or children. Here is what you can do to protect your rights and navigate the process effectively.

Understand the investigation process

First, it is important to understand what an investigation entails. A CPS investigation involves a thorough review of your child’s safety and well-being. A CPS worker will visit your home, talk to your child and may also speak with other people who know your family, such as teachers or doctors. They will gather information about the alleged abuse or neglect and make an assessment based on the evidence they collect.

Stay cooperative and calm

Despite the stress of the situation, try to stay calm and cooperative throughout the investigation process. This does not mean you have to agree with everything the investigator says or does but be respectful and composed. Showing hostility can potentially complicate the process and may not leave a good impression on the investigator.

Document everything

It is a good idea to document everything related to the investigation. This can include notes from meetings or phone calls with the CPS worker, correspondence and any actions you take in response to the investigation. These records can be useful in demonstrating your cooperation and responsiveness throughout the investigation.

Educate yourself

Educate yourself about your rights. You have the right to know what the allegations are against you and the right to have a support person present during meetings with CPS.

The aim of a CPS investigation is not about punishing parents but ensuring a safe and secure environment for children. By understanding the process, you can get through a CPS investigation in Florida and work toward the best outcome for you and your child.

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