What can happen to parents if they are accused of child abuse by their own children?

Asked over 2 years ago - Bend, OR

Can your own children accuse you of child abuse? What happens to parents if they report you to child abuse agency?


Attorney answers (2)

  1. Josh Lamborn


    Contributor Level 8


    Lawyers agree

    Answered . Yes, children can, and often do accuse their parents of abuse. These reports can come in to teachers, neighbors, police, doctors therapists, the Department of Human Services (DHS) or others. If the report is to someone who is a mandatory reporter of child abuse (such as a teacher, lawyer, doctor, etc.), that professional is required to report the abuse to law enforcement and/or DHS. Once that report gets to DHS, they will evaluate the claim of abuse and decide what action to take. DHS can take a number of actions on calls they receive. They may close the call at screening, they may assign a worker to follow up by phone or in person or if the report is serious enough they may assign a DHS child protective service worker to go out on an immediate response to assess the situation. CPS workers usually bring law enforcement with them on these calls as they sometimes result in the children being removed from the abusive environment. If the children are removed, there must be a hearing for a judge to determine if the court is going to take temporary custody of the children. If the judge says no, then the children are returned. If yes, then they will be placed in a home and a dependency case will likely be filed against the parents. In a dependency case, the State alleges that the parents have failed to provide a safe environment for the children in one or more ways. Parents have the right to a court appointed attorney if they cannot afford one to protect their parental rights and they have a right to a court trial to determine if the allegations are true. If they are found to be true, then the children are found to be within the jurisdiction of the court and the parents have a year to basically prove that they are fit to regain custody and full parenting rights. If after the year the parents have failed to do so, the State may begin proceedings to pursue termination of parental rights.

    Depending on the type of allegations the children make, you may also be arrested and charged with a crime. In that case you should seek the advice of a qualified criminal defense attorney in Bend.

    Answers submitted by this attorney posted on Avvo are not legal advice and under no circumstances form an attorney... more
  2. Jay Bodzin

    Contributor Level 20


    Lawyer agrees

    Answered . Mr. Lamborn is completely correct. I write separately only to emphasize that not every report necessarily sets all of this in motion. If the accusation is for 'abuse' that isn't deemed that serious - if it just seems that the children are disgruntled about parental rules, for example - then CPS may just write it off. On the other hand, if serious abuse is alleged, then the state takes it seriously.

    Nothing posted on this site is intended to create an attorney-client relationship. Each case is unique. You are... more

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