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I was falsely reported to Child Protective Services. Can I press charges on the person who did this? This is a Misdemeanor!!!

Flushing, NY |

My neighbors have been harassing us for almost 1 year because they want us to move out of the apartment. The apartment we rented is located in a 2-apartment building. The neighbors we share the building with are an older couple who have lived here for more than 30 years. They are so set in their ways that they can't accept the fact that a new family (young couple with three children) has moved in to their building. They have complained about everything we do since the first day we moved in. Most of it is petty and we just laughed it off. But recently they pulled the ultimate wild card on us. They called Child Protective Services on us and made false allegations against us. The DA's office said they can't do anything because it's an open case & the cops refuse to write a report!

The reason we know it was the neighbors is because the day Child Protective Services showed up at our house was the same day we grew the courage to call security on them for the first time for playing loud music. When CPS showed up they said the were there for the neighbors (they said their name to us) then she looked at her file again and said "oh I'm sorry we're actually here for so and so" (which was us).

Attorney Answers 5

Posted

You indicate that the "case is still open", which will be taken to mean the child endangerment complaint. If that is the case, then you can't "do" anything, if at all, until the CPS investigation is closed without action, dismissed or otherwise ended - any which way but must be in your favor. After that, consult an attorney to see if all of their conduct as a whole might serve as a basis for an "intentional infliction of emotional distress" claim, a "prima facie tort" claim, or other theory of recovery. Tread lightly until CPS decides to close the case.

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Posted

I've seen this fact patter in Florida, but not in New York. Unfortunately for folks in your position, I don't think there is much you can do. The system is set up so that people will not be afraid to report real child endangerment, so reporters are insulated from liability for reporting. I would be surprised if the law is different on this issue in NY. Maybe it's time to think about moving. By moving, your crazy neighbors won't be "winning," YOU will be, because you will no longer be living near them. Good luck.

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Posted

Unfortunately, no. Perhaps it may be best to find a new apartment free from the stress of a problem neighbor.

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Posted

If and when the CPS investigation is reported as "unfounded," then you should pursue the matter in civil court if your attorney has determined it is a suit worth bringing. You may wish to await the result of a misdemeanor prosecution, if it ever takes place, but your statute of limitation will continue to run, as it is only one year, and this misdemeanor will not extend it even if there were a criminal conviction obtained.

If you found this "helpful" or "best answer," please click it with my appreciation. My response is for educational purposes and does not constitute legal advice nor creates an attorney client relationship which requires all the details and a personal conference.

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Posted

There are some very evil people in the world and they are aware that CPS must investigate any complaint. They will use this to punish their enemies and CPS knows this. You will not get anywhere with a malicious prosecution case or smalls claims court unless you had absolute proof. A lawyer will not take such cases as there is no monetary reward to justify the many hours to prepare the case so you will have to deal with these people. Either make friends with them, move, or get even in a lawful way, like playing really bad music.

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