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What court hears child abuse cases?

Child abuse is a very serious matter. When Child Protective Services begins investigating a case, workers always focus on the child and his or her needs. If you are under investigation due to a child abuse claim, it can be very disheartening, especially if you know you are not guilty of the accusations. However, you still must comply and allow CPS to do its job. If CPS decides to go forward with the case, the North Carolina Judicial Branch explains it will go to juvenile court.

CPS would go to court to request protection for your child. This means that it wants a court order to remove the child from your care and place him or her in the care of another adult or the county. Before going to court, though, CPS will conduct a full investigation to see exactly what is happening in your home and if the allegations have any merit.

For a situation to be abuse, there needs to be physical or emotional harm to your child. If you are engaging in criminal activity and involving your child, this also could be abuse. Even allowing someone else to harm your child is abusive. Also, allowing your child to involve him or herself in delinquent behavior constitutes abuse under the law.

It is also possible for someone to open a case in juvenile court for abuse outside of CPS. It is important to note that anyone can make a report to CPS or the court pertaining to abuse of your child. This is why an investigation occurs. Both CPS and the court take all abuse accusations seriously because there are many times that they are valid.