DYFS / DCPP OAL Appeals following receipt of substantiation letter
Most DYFS / DCPP cases are brought to court in the Superior Court of New Jersey in the county where the parents live. However, some cases do not proceed to court for a number of reasons. Nevertheless, DYFS / DCPP will still complete an investigation and provide you with a letter indicating their findings. If the letter says that the case is unfounded, this means that they did not find that abuse or neglect occurred.
However, the letter may indicate that the Division’s investigation determined that abuse or neglect is substantiated. It will then indicate who they believe abused or neglected the child. The letter will then indicate that:
“If you want to appeal this decision, you must contact the Administrative Review Officer within twenty (20) days of the date of this letter to request a Regional Dispositional Conference”.
If you don’t appeal this finding, it will remain on your record forever. You don’t need this following you around. Besides possibly impacting your employment, it may also cause further problems from DYFS or from the other parent if they seek to take action against your custody or parenting time rights. Too many people have done nothing only to find out years later that their failure to act has had a big impact on their rights.
The Office of Administrative Law or OAL court is a completely separate court facility than the superior court. The rules are also different. Your DYFS OAL lawyer will know how to handle this matter, but if you don’t hire a lawyer, you may never see the inside of a court room. That is because DYFS will likely file a motion for summary disposition against you. If successful, you’ll never see a judge. Thus, it is important to hire a lawyer right away. Waiting can cost you!
Once your court dates comes around, your case will proceed to a bench trial which is a trial without a jury. Testimony will be taken from a number of DYFS’ witnesses and you will also get to testify as well. Again, your DYFS OAL attorney will handle all of this for you.
Our team of tough, smart lawyers know how to handle DYFS OAL appeals. Our lawyers have handled some very tough cases including one case where our client was accused of molesting his child 100’s of times. Instead of seeing the case as impossible, out team of DYFS defense lawyers fought hard and we won the case! Thus, we back down to no one. Call us today and let us fight for you!