Being put on the ChildLine registry is a major problem. For the purposes of this article, we will address (1) what exactly ChildLine is, (2) the ChildLine registry, and (3) the unique appeals process applicants will undergo to get these allegations expunged.
What is ChildLine?
The state's Department of Public Welfare hosts the ChildLine agency. It's primary function is to offer protection for minors who have been abused and neglected while holding alleged perpetrators accountable for their actions. Agency specialists operate a 24-hour hotline that is accessible to witnesses who wish to report the mistreatment of a child. Once a report is made, ChildLine specialists gauge the plausibility of an incident by assessing a number of factors. The person who called the report, their relation to the accused, the details offered by a witness and other relevant facts are just some of the components considered by specialists. If specialists determine that a report is feasible, ChildLine along with General Protective Services will launch a countywide investigation in search of evidence that supports these accusations. If enough evidence is obtained (by the judgment of the agency), the accused will be notified of these findings and consequently placed on the ChildLine Registry.
The ChildLine Registry
The consequences of being placed on the ChildLine registry are dire. Once a person is listed, they will experience severely limited access to potential job prospects, schools, or activities involving or centered around children. Individuals who are listed will have their names placed alongside the likes of predators and people who have committed unspeakable crimes against children. This is why it's important to contact an attorney who can help you avoid being “childlined.”
The Appeals Process
Once you've been notified about the allegations against you, the agency will give you a certain timeframe to appeal this determination and request a hearing. It is best that people who are given prior notification of these findings to comply with deadlines, as untimely requests - appeal applications that are submitted after a deadline - are rarely considered by an agency. If your hearing request is received, a hearing request will be scheduled nearby. Delaware County ChildLine cases will often be heard at the Southeastern Region office of the Pennsylvania Department of Human Services (DHS) Bureau of Hearing and Appeals (BHA), located in Philadelphia at the following address:
Philadelphia State Office Building
Commonwealth of PA
Department of Human Services
During a hearing, an officer is tasked with reassessing the facts in a case again with the basis of your appeal in mind. Then it will be the duty of ChildLine to prove that you committed the acts of abuse that were reported by a witness with now “clear and convincing” evidence. If an agency can not successfully do so, your appeal will be granted and all of the documentation and reports of abuse will be expunged, or completely eradicated from the ChildLine registry and FBI databases.
Delaware County ChildLine Appeal Attorney
If you have been notified by an agency that the allegations reported to ChildLine are “founded,” you should challenge this determination. Attorney Joseph D. Lento is here to provide you a solid defense to have your findings expunged. Contact him today for assistance.