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Surprise Visits by CPS and ACS Investigators

ACS investigator knocking on door.

When an ACS (Administration for Children’s Services) or CPS (Child Protective Services) investigator knocks on a door in the middle of the night it is usually a shock to a family. Most mothers and fathers work hard to be the best possible parents they can be for their children. The initial reaction to an ACS or CPS investigator knocking on their door is that we have nothing to hide and we’ve done nothing wrong. They are let into the house or apartment and the parents believe they can explain the situation and they will go away. Unfortunately, this is not always the best way to handle this type of situation.

ACS and CPS investigators like to show up at odd times. If the APS or CPS investigator knocks on your door have them initially identify themselves. Ask them why are they at your house. If they refuse to tell you or indicate they don’t have to tell you, they are lying. You are absolutely entitled to know why someone is investigating you.

Coming Into Your Home

The ACS or CPS investigator will tell you they are entitled to come into your home to investigate a situation. WRONG! They have no right to come into your come. The Fourth Amendment to the United States Constitution protects you against unreasonable searches and seizures. Unless they have a search warrant they are not allowed to come into your home. Even if they have the police backing them up, if they do not have a search warrant you do not have to invite them into your home.

You should advise the ACS or CPS investigator you do not wish to make any comment at this time. However, you will cooperate with them and as part of your cooperation you are going to have your attorney contact them as soon as possible. Ask them their phone number and other contact information. At that point in time the ACS or CPS investigator will probably threaten you. They will tell you – you have no right to have an attorney representing you. They will tell you they have the right to investigate right now. They do not! Do not back down. They are counting on you to waive your rights. Do not waive your rights.

ACS and CPS Investigation Techniques

ACS and CPS investigators are trained to find instances of child abuse and child neglect and to determine what amounts to child abuse or child neglect. They fulfill their obligations as investigators by calling and visiting homes of families they have received anonymous reports regarding child abuse or child neglect. Virtually anyone can call or file a complaint with ACS or CPS concerning child abuse or child neglect.

An ACS or CPS investigator, if they come to your home, even if the complaint is totally bogus and without merit, will make demands on the parents. They may want the parents to take drug tests. They may want the parents to take alcohol tests. They may want the parents to take parenting courses. ACS and CPS investigators take this action to protect their jobs and make it appear they are being very diligent in performing their duties. This may cause diligent, loving, well respected parents to suffer humiliation, inconvenience and harassment.

Attorney Elliot Schlissel

Our law office has been representing families being investigated by ACS or CPS for more than 3 decades. Feel free to call us, the office of Schlissel DeCorpo LLP in Nassau, Queens and Suffolk Counties for a free consultation at the following phone numbers: 516-561-6645, 718-350-2802 and 631-319-8262. You can also e-mail us at Elliot@sdnylaw.com.

Valley Stream, Lynbrook, Baldwin, Malverne, Freeport, Oceanside, Long Beach, Elmont, Lakeview, West Hempstead, Hempstead, Merrick, Bellmore

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