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How to Handle a Visit from the Department of Children and Family Services

There is hardly anything as nerve-racking as receiving a visit from the Department of Children and Family Services. But if you keep your cool and don't panic, you'll have a good chance of weathering the storm.


  • Step 1: Request additional information from the Department of Children and Family Services before you decide to hire an attorney. Some organizations that sell legal protection may attempt to play on your fear. Hopefully, with a little forethought, you will be able to cope with the problem, clear the matter up, and get on with your life.
  • FACT: Fathers in ancient Rome had complete control over their children -- they could even put them to death if they wished. The founder of the Roman republic, Junius Brutus, had his sons executed for disobedience.
  • Step 2: Ask that a trusted adult be present if the caseworker requests to speak to your child. Or ask whether the caseworker will accept references from friends or family member in lieu of the interview.
  • Step 3: Decide whether you want to invite the caseworker into your house -- if they ask to come in. If you do not, ask them to come back another time or offer to step outside.
  • Step 4: Ask the caseworker for identification when they show up. There have been cases of individuals falsely impersonating caseworkers.
  • TIP: Try to keep the interaction as cordial as possible. Hostility acts like a red flag to caseworkers.
  • Step 5: Recognize that caseworkers only respond to credible reports that a child is being abused or neglected.

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