Unjust Child Abuse Allegations: Your First Call, an Illinois Juvenile Attorney
For the past few days, your two year old toddler has not been acting like himself. He appears irritable and feverish. You decide to watch him for the next day or so to determine if a call into the pediatrician is warranted. Your son has other ideas. It is now two o'clock in the morning and you are trying to soothe your child who is running a high fever and tugging at his right ear. You make a call into your pediatrician's office as you buckle him in for a ride to the ER with what you suspect is a severe ear infection.
Upon arrival, the triage nurse takes you and your son into the triage room and confirms that your baby is experiencing intense ear pain and directs you to the nearest emergency room to await the on-call pediatrician. A young intern arrives and begins examining your child. You can not help but notice as they confirm the diagnosis that you are receiving odd looks by both the doctor and the nursing staff. She begins to discuss the treatment plan for the ear infection and you welcome the opportunity for relief in sight but then she blurts out, “can you tell me how your son received these bruises?”
You take a moment to let the question sink in, with disbelief you look down at your toddler's legs. Stifling a nervous giggle at the absurdity of her question you explain that your son is an active toddler, a boy who crawls, walks, falls and runs into furniture as he explores his expanding world. She reminds you that under the Illinois Child Abuse and Neglect Reporting Act, she is required by law to report any form of suspected child abuse. Your whole ordeal just became a nightmare.
To make matters even worse, you are in the process of a bitter divorce and you fear not only the involvement of the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS) but this will only supply ammunition for your spouse to begin child custody proceedings.
As your son silently sleeps the rest of the early morning hours away in the ER, you plan your recourse and quickly. You briefly discuss the situation with the on-staff social worker and thankfully you are allowed to take your son home to the comfort of his own bed. The social worker mentions that you will be receiving a call from the DCFS as the investigation continues.
You bundle up your son and rush out of the hospital. At exactly 9:00 am you contact an experienced Illinois juvenile law attorney. The goal is to prove the allegations false and this could include subpoenaing witnesses such as day care facilitator, family members, pediatrician or even the DCFS social worker assigned to the case. Expert witnesses may also be called in such as a psychiatrist to assess your child who will then report his or her findings in court.
You breathe a sigh of relief as you check in on your son who is happily sleeping the morning away and knowing that you made the right call.If you reside in the Kane, Kendall, Dekalb or DuPage counties and find yourself in this type of situation, the call you should make is to The Law Offices of Douglas B. Warlick. Attorney Warlick, with over 30 years of experience will personally meet with you to discuss your next course of action. Since 1981, attorney Warlick has been representing parents who may be facing restricted access or termination of parental rights as a result of abuse or neglect charges. If you have not already done so, contact attorney Warlick at 630-232-9700 for your discounted consultation today.