OLR Bill Analysis

SB 822 (File 48, as amended by Senate “A”)*

AN ACT CONCERNING INTERVIEWS OF CHILDREN BY THE DEPARTMENT OF CHILDREN AND FAMILIES DURING INVESTIGATIONS OF CHILD ABUSE AND NEGLECT.

SUMMARY:

By law, the Department of Children and Families (DCF) commissioner generally must obtain the consent of parents, guardians, or other individuals responsible for the care of children DCF wishes to interview when it is investigating child abuse or neglect allegations. Currently, DCF does not need the caretaker's consent when it has reason to believe that such caretaker or a member of the child's household is the perpetrator of the abuse or neglect. This bill also allows DCF to interview without consent when it has reason to believe that seeking consent would place the child at imminent risk of physical harm.

By law, if consent is not required, the interview generally must be conducted in the presence of a disinterested adult.

*Senate Amendment “A” replaces the underlying bill, which would have made DCF's belief, based on a documented compelling reason, that seeking consent would place the child at imminent risk of physical harm the only circumstance for it not to seek consent.

EFFECTIVE DATE: October 1, 2013

COMMITTEE ACTION

Children Committee

Joint Favorable

Yea

12

Nay

0

(02/28/2013)

Human Services Committee

Joint Favorable

Yea

17

Nay

0

(04/16/2013)