Northampton County ChildLine Appeal Attorney

In the state of Pennsylvania, mere accusations of child abuse can lead to penalties. A trial to determine a person's guilt or innocence is not a requirement to be “childlined,” or placed on a state registry as a perpetrator of child abuse. The decision to have an individual's name listed on a registry is based solely on the judgment of social workers. If they believe that a person has mistreated or neglected a child or youth, he or she will be labeled as an abuser, causing their reputation to be ruined and strictly limiting their opportunities.

This is why it's important you consult with an attorney if you find yourself in this situation. For the purposes of this article, we will discuss (1) what ChildLine is, (2) the ChildLine registry, and (3) the appeals process applicants will be required to undergo in the state to get these allegations expunged.

What is ChildLine?

The ChildLine agency is hosted by the state's Department of Public Welfare. Its main role is to offer protection for minors and youth who have endured abuse. Agency specialists operate a 24-hour toll-free hotline that the public is encouraged to call if they witness the mistreatment of children. Once a report is called in, it is the duty of ChildLine specialists to determine the feasibility of this instance based on assessing a number of factors. The relationship between the reporter and the alleged perpetrator, the accuracy of the details and facts within a complaint, and the cultural differences among between a complainant and the accused are just some of the factors that will be considered. If after the assessment of these factors a report is considered viable, a countywide investigation will be launched by ChildLine and Northampton County Children & Youth Services to find evidence backing these claims.

The ChildLine Registry

If your name is placed on the ChildLine registry, it will be listed alongside the likes of pedophiles and people who have committed unspeakable crimes towards children. People who have access to the registry - schools, organizations, employers, law enforcement etc. - will misjudge you and associate with these types of people. By law, being on the ChildLine registry means that you are prohibited from dwelling in the same vicinity in social, professional and private settings. These regulations severely limit potential career prospects, your involvement in your child's education, and your participation in events that you might be interested in. Even events that may not involve or be centered around children may reject you because of the stigma that accompanies child abuse allegations.

The Appeals Process

Once you have been notified of the allegations made against you, you are will be given a timeframe to request a hearing for an appeal. Northampton ChildLine cases will often be heard in Philadelphia.  The Southeastern Region Office of the Pennsylvania Department of Human Services (DHS) Bureau of Hearings and Appeals (BHA) is located at:

Philadelphia State Office Building
Commonwealth of PA
Department of Human Services

During a hearing, a hearing officer will revisit a case taking into account the basis of your appeal. It will then be the duty of ChildLine to provide clear and convincing evidence that you committed the acts in a report. If the agency is unable to do so, you will be granted an expungement.

Northampton County ChildLine Appeal Attorney

If you believe that the findings of child abuse allegations against you are unfair or unjust, you have every right to challenge this determination. Skilled attorney Joseph D. Lento will provide a solid defense that will maximize the likelihood of an expungement. Contact him today for help.

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Attorney Joseph D. Lento has nearly a decade of experience successfully resolving clients' criminal charges in Philadelphia and the Pennsylvania counties. If you are having any uncertainties about what the future may hold for you or a loved one, contact the Lento Law Firm today! Criminal defense attorney Joseph D. Lento will go above and beyond the needs of any client, and will fight until the final bell rings.

This website was created only for general information purposes. It is not intended to be construed as legal advice for any situation. Only a direct consultation with a licensed Pennsylvania and New Jersey attorney can provide you with formal legal counsel based on the unique details surrounding your situation. The pages on this website may contain links and contact information for third party organizations – the Lento Law Firm does not necessarily endorse these organizations nor the materials contained on their website. In Pennsylvania, Attorney Joseph D. Lento represents clients throughout Pennsylvania's 67 counties, including, but not limited to Philadelphia, Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Montgomery, Berks, Lancaster, Lehigh, and Northampton County. In New Jersey, attorney Joseph D. Lento represents clients throughout New Jersey's 21 counties: Atlantic, Bergen, Burlington, Camden, Cape May, Cumberland, Essex, Gloucester, Hudson, Hunterdon, Mercer, Middlesex, Monmouth, Morris, Ocean, Passaic, Salem, Somerset, Sussex, Union, and Warren County, Outside of Pennsylvania and New Jersey, unless attorney Joseph D. Lento is admitted pro hac vice if needed, his assistance is educational advice, and does not constitute legal advice or the practice of law. The decision to hire an attorney in Philadelphia, the Pennsylvania counties, New Jersey, or nationwide should not be made solely on the strength of an advertisement. We invite you to contact the Lento Law Firm directly to inquire about our specific qualifications and experience. Communicating with the Lento Law Firm by email, phone, or fax does not create an attorney-client relationship. The Lento Law Firm will serve as your official legal counsel upon a formal agreement from both parties. Any information sent to the Lento Law Firm before an attorney-client relationship is made is done on a non-confidential basis.

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