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One of my 20 month old twins drowned in our swimming pool. We have costody of our other children & there are no criminal charges

Joliet, IL |

My dcfs caseworker is trying to close the case, however we just were informed we are being charged with death by neglect from dcfs. My case worker says we will appeal it.

Attorney Answers 4

Posted

I'm so sorry both for your loss and the ordeal.

Please protect yourself and consult a good criminal defense lawyer immediately.

Stephen L. Hoffman
Law Office of Stephen L. Hoffman LLC
Chicago, IL
773-944-9737
Email:  stephen@hofflawyer.com
Website:  www.hofflawyer.com
Blog:  www.hofflawyer.com/blog/
 

This answer posted on Avvo is for informational and educational purposes only. There is no attorney-client relationship created or formed and you should not rely on this as legal advice. The suggestion is made that if you wish to protect your rights, you consult with an attorney immediately.

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Posted

My Lord. I am so sorry to read of this. I can't even imagine your pain. My prayers -- and I am sure the prayers of my colleagues -- are with you.

Sadly, you are going to need an attorney, as your future with your other children is being challenged. Look for someone in Chicago that deals with dependency and neglect cases and be prepared to fight for your rights. This will not be an easy road but keep your heads up.

Good luck!

In no way am I offering you legal advice, and in no way has my comment created an attorney-client relationship. You are not to rely upon my note above in any way, but insted need to sit down with counsel and share all relevant facts before receiving fully-informed legal advice. If you want to be completely sure of your rights, you must sit down with an experienced criminal defense attorney to be fully aware of your rights.

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2 comments

Judy A. Goldstein

Judy A. Goldstein

Posted

Why would the asker look for counsel in Chicago for a Will County matter? Many of us are experienced and able to handle cases in our own county, even though the asker is free to contact anyone licensed in the state.

Scott Andrew Wineberg

Scott Andrew Wineberg

Posted

He might have gotten the county wrong, and you may be correct that "we" inclusive of DCFS would not be appealing, but Mr. Deasy correctly suggested the asker consult an attorney who handles abuse/neglect cases and can assist this family in appealing a "DCFS charge" (likely meaning an indicated finding of inadequate supervision or whatever the case may be.) A criminal defense attorney may be helpful, more helpful than a divorce/separation lawyer, but criminal charges seem hardly likely.

Posted

I am very sorry for your loss. Attorney Hoffman is corrrect. You should retain the services of a good criminal defense attorney ASAP. In the meantime, refrain from speaking further with DCFS or anyone - in person or online without first clearing it with your lawyer. You are lucky that there are many good attorneys in your area.

By the way - It does not make sense that DCFS is charging you, and your caseworker (presumably from DCFS) tells you that "we" will appeal it.

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2 comments

Michael L Rich

Michael L Rich

Posted

I'm glad an IL attorney commented on the "we will appeal" note in the question. It caught my attention. The asker needs to be sure that s/he files any necessary appeals within the proper time limits.

Asker

Posted

this is not my response, but someone else has same opinion - stay away..... “stay away” Posted by: a Divorce client, 11 days ago. Client Review: She does not keep you informed will keep pushing cases longer than need be to get more money out of you. She doesn't return phone calls, has a... more http://www.avvo.com/attorneys/60448-il-judy-goldstein-1137006.html?ref=qad_answer_name

Posted

The duplicity of a DCFS investigation and a criminal investigation can be challenging. Most criminal lawyers, like myself, will tell you not to talk to anyone, including the DCFS, however, then you are faced with the DCFS investigation and without your cooperation they will "indicate" you as a perpetrator. This catch 22 situation is tricky, because obviously the DCFS indicating you will have consequences, especially if you have other children, but your non-talking will be in your best interest in the criminal investigation. The safety plan that the DCFS has put in place is an appealable issue, along with any indication that you were at fault.
I am truly sorry for your loss, as that must be an unimaginable pain, however, you need to get a criminal lawyer involved, and make sure that the criminal lawyer has working knowledge of the intricacies of the DCFS investigation process, if not then hire an additional separate lawyer who specializes in DCFS work.

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1 comment

Stephen Laurence Hoffman

Stephen Laurence Hoffman

Posted

This is a very good point. Not talking is generally the best advice, but with the DCFS investigation, "not talking" can be "used against you." Definitely, do nothing without representation in both proceedings.

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