DCFS Investigations and Administrative Appeals
When DCFS is contacted regarding a report of possible abuse or neglect they will conduct an investigation. Unlike a criminal case or investigation, the level of proof needed is substantially lower. DCFS only needs to find what they determine is “credible evidence” that abuse or neglect occurred. At the conclusion of the investigation they will make a finding that the report is “indicated” or “unfounded”. An indicated finding, similar to a criminal conviction, is reported to a state database and can have a lasting effect.
An indicated finding could prevent you from continuing your employment if you work in a field that deals with children regularly such as medicine, teaching, daycare, etc.
You are entitled to have an attorney to offer guidance and help deal with the DCFS throughout the investigation and with filing your appeal. Even if you didn’t have a lawyer while you were investigated, you can still have one to represent you in challenging an indicated finding by DCFS. However, there are strict rules regarding when and how an appeal can be made and it is important to contact an attorney as soon as you are notified by DCFS of a finding.
You can handle the appeal without a lawyer, but DCFS will send a lawyer to represent them and you will be at a disadvantage from the start if you don’t hire your own lawyer.
At the Russo Law Offices in Wheaton and Chicago, you can be assured of finding the right lawyer to help you deal with a DCFS Investigation or Appeal Attorney Richard Russo, using all the resources of Associated Legal Service Chartered, providing experienced representation for clients who require an attorney to deal with DCFS.