Albuquerque CYFD Abuse and Neglect Lawyer

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Albuquerque CYFD Abuse and Neglect Attorney

The New Mexico Children, Youth, and Families Department (CYFD) is tasked with the incredibly difficult job of investigating and handling cases where there are allegations of child abuse and neglect. A key component of that is to ensure that the procedures are followed properly and that the parties involved are able to present their case. An Albuquerque CYFD abuse and neglect lawyer has the job of representing their clients in this process.

Child abuse and neglect are serious allegations and can carry serious consequences. They can do significant harm and leave victims with psychological and sometimes physical scars. It’s important that these situations be investigated and addressed.

However, there is another side to consider. Family is one of the most important things we have in our society and in our lives. We should do what we can to see that the family is preserved and not broken up and disrupted without sufficient cause and proof. Well-meaning but overzealous CYFD representatives may go too far in their efforts to ensure that children are protected. It’s important that the right balance be kept.

There are systems and procedures in place that are meant to ensure that the process remains balanced. At Berenson & Associates, PC, we advocate for our clients and ensure that every option and procedure available to them is considered.

When Does the CYFD Get Involved?

The CYFD is supposed to investigate the welfare of children when there is sufficient cause to do so. A number of different things could lead to the CYFD getting involved with a family. Some of these include:

  • Reports – In many cases, the CYFD is called to look at a situation thanks to reporting by someone who believes that there may be abuse or neglect of children in a home. These reports are often made by someone close to the situation, such as family members, neighbors, teachers, or healthcare professionals. The CYFD has a hotline for these kinds of reports, and many tips come from there.
  • Domestic Violence – Situations where there have been accusations or police visits for domestic violence will often lead the CYFD to intervene out of concern for the children’s safety.
  • Substance Abuse – Abuse of a drug or alcohol can lead to circumstances where children are inadequately cared for or even endangered. It’s possible that suspicions of this could lead to CYFD involvement.
  • Educational or Medical Neglect – Neglectful behavior can garner CYFD attention. Word of insufficient education of a child could trigger an investigation. Similarly, not seeking out appropriate and sufficient medical care for a child will lead to the CYFD examining the situation.
  • Truancy – If a child is regularly absent from school, the CYFD will likely look into why that is occurring.
  • Insufficient Housing and Nutrition – If there is an indication that a child isn’t getting sufficient nutrition or is living in poor conditions, that can lead to a CYFD investigation.
  • Child’s Request – There are times when a child, directly or through others, may seek help for mistreatment at home. The CYFD will check to see what is going on in that event.

What Can a CYFD Abuse & Neglect Lawyer Do?

There are a number of different ways that a CYFD abuse & neglect lawyer can assist their clients in Albuquerque, NM. The CYFD process can often be complex and challenging to work through.

That can be made all the more difficult by the emotions that are involved with anything involving our children. A knowledgeable attorney can act as a place of stability in these situations. Some of the things that we can help with include:

  • Advice – The CYFD process deals with a range of issues, from foster care to custody to abuse and neglect. It’s important to follow proper procedures and protocols if you want to work through things as efficiently as possible. We can help you through that and advise you as to the next steps that would serve your interests.
  • Investigations – An attorney can be critical to the process when you are being investigated by the CYFD. We can help you with the process of being interviewed, working with investigators, and preparation.
  • Representation – A lawyer can act as your representative through the legal process. This could be outside of the courtroom when dealing with legal procedures, in the negotiation process, and in court hearings and trials. As your representative, it’s our job to make a case for you and present arguments on your behalf.
  • Advocacy – It’s your lawyer’s job to protect your rights throughout the investigation. There are procedures and protocols in the CYFD process, and your lawyer is responsible for making sure that these are followed and that your right to a fair process is respected.
  • Appeals – Sometimes, the process may come back with a decision that is not what you were looking for. In those cases, you have a right to appeal the decision, and a lawyer can help you navigate, prepare for, and represent you in that process.

We Can Represent You Through the CYFD Process

There is a difficult balance that needs to be maintained in a CYFD abuse or neglect investigation and the accompanying legal process. Children in abusive and neglectful situations absolutely need protection and a way out of those dangerous circumstances.

At the same time, family is one of the most important, oldest societal institutions that we have. While it’s important to protect those who need protection, it’s also critical that families don’t get broken up and disrupted without sufficient cause. It’s challenging but absolutely critical that the CYFD and courts involved get things right.

A big part of getting it right is ensuring that the system in place is consistently and rigorously challenged. That’s why it’s important to work with a lawyer when dealing with CYFD concerns. It’s our job to represent our client’s interests, challenge what’s being asserted, and ensure that the system operates as it’s meant to.

Whether through negotiation to resolve cases without going through the full court process or making the case in court, Berenson & Associates, PC, can vigorously represent our client. If you have CYFD abuse and neglect concerns that you need legal help and representation with, contact us today.


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