5 Reasons You Should Not Speak to CPS Without a Lawyer
Having an attorney when dealing with Child Protective Services (CPS) and their social workers in a juvenile dependency case is vital.
Social workers are not always looking out for your best interests and may try to get you to say things that could hurt your case.
Here are five reasons why you should not speak to social workers without a lawyer:
1. They May Try to Get You to Admit Guilt
Social workers from CPS may try to get you to admit guilt, even if you are innocent. They may do this by asking leading questions or making statements that imply you are guilty.
If you have an attorney, they can help screen through the types of questions social workers ask and ensure that your rights are protected.
Social Worker: Did you ever hit your child?
Parent: Only to discipline my child.
If an attorney does not represent you, the social worker may continue to ask these types of questions, and you may accidentally say something that could be used against you in court.
2. They May Not Tell You the Whole Story
Social workers from CPS may not tell you the whole story. They may only give you information that supports their case against you, and they may withhold information that could help your case.
If you have an attorney, they can help ensure that social workers are truthful and transparent.
Social Worker: We spoke to your child’s teacher, and she said your child is failing all their classes.
Parent: What about the part where the teacher said my child is being bullied?
The social worker in this example only gave the parent part of the story. The parent’s attorney would be able to get the full story from the social worker and use it to help the parent’s case.
3. They May Try to Manipulate You
Social workers from CPS may try to manipulate you into doing something, not in your best interest. They may do this by playing on your emotions or making false promises.
If you have an attorney, they can help ensure that social workers are honest with you and not manipulating you.
Social Worker: If you sign this paper, we will make sure your child is placed with a loving family.
Parent: What if I don’t sign it?
Social Worker: Your child could be placed in a foster home, and you may never see them again.
In this example, the social worker manipulates the parent into signing the paper by making false promises.
Again, the parent’s attorney would be able to explain what the paper says and ensure the parent is not being manipulated.
4. They Are Not on Your Side
Social workers from CPS are not on your side. They are supposed to be neutral, but they may have their own biases that influence how they view your case.
If you have an attorney, they can make sure social workers are being fair and impartial.
Social Worker: We talked to your child’s teacher, and she said your child is disruptive in class and doesn’t listen to anyone.
Parent: My child has ADHD, and the teacher knows that.
Social Worker: The teacher also said you never come to parent-teacher conferences.
The social worker in this example is biased against the parent because they are not considering the child has ADHD.
The parent’s attorney would be able to point out this bias and ensure it is not influencing the social worker’s opinion of the case.
5. It Is Too Risky
Social workers from CPS have a lot of power in juvenile dependency cases. They can make recommendations to the judge that could impact your case.
It is too risky to speak to social workers without an attorney because you may say something that could hurt your case.
It is always best to consult with an attorney before speaking to social workers.
What Should I Do If CPS Social Workers are trying to Speak to Me Regarding Abuse or Neglect Allegations?
If you have been accused of abuse or neglect, it is crucial to get an attorney as soon as possible.
You deserve to have a lawyer who will help you fight to get your children back. If you are dealing with a juvenile dependency case, child-welfare services case, or CPS case in Orange County, California, or Southern California, you need the juvenile dependency attorneys at ALL Trial Lawyers by your side.