What to do when DYFS / DCPP requests a substance abuse evaluation
DYFS loves nothing more than to request substance abuse evaluations. Most people, thinking they have nothing to hide, agree to participate in the evaluation. This is often where cases go down hill. See, you probably won’t get a choice and where to go for the evaluation. The DYFS case worker will likely force you to go to one of their places such as Preferred. Often times, the evaluator works in DYFS’ office. Thus, while they claim that their agencies are separate, it seems rather odd that they are in the same exact office.
The other odd thing here is how different the results of their evaluations are from anyone else that I use. I work with some of the top evaluators in the state and they are not “hired guns”. They will call it like they see it. DYFS’ people may send someone to drug treatment for smoking one joint over 10 years ago. I know because I helped a former neighbor get out of long term drug treatment for that exact issue. DYFS and their providers seem hell bent on getting people in the system for long periods of time. While their exact motive is unclear, DYFS’ motivation may be to keep you involved as long as possible to see if you screw up. Even people that don’t use drugs often or have been sober for a while use drugs due to the stress of dealing with DYFS. I’ve seen it countless times. People that had 10 years sober have cracked under the pressure. The result is a DYFS complaint being filed against them. For the provider doing the treatment, they obviously get money for keeping the person there as long as possible.
Of course, that doesn’t mean that all evaluations are biased, but it certainly seems that many are for one reason or another. It could also just be a prejudice against people with DYFS cases since personal opinion may play a big factor in the ultimate decision even though it shouldn’t. As I have said in other posts, outright refusing to go through with the substance abuse evaluation could land you in court and your children in foster care. The best way to handle a request by DYFS / DCPP to undergo a substance abuse evaluation is to call an attorney before you even respond to the request. Let the attorney talk for you and guide you as to how to handle this. If your case worker is asking you or your family members to participate in a substance abuse evaluation, call our team of tough, smart defense attorneys right away before you do or say anything.