You are here

The Department of Children and Families, used to be The Department of Social Services

The Department of Social Services (DSS), now called the Department of Children and Families (DCF) is the state agency responsible for protecting children and helping troubled families. DCF does the following:

  • Investigates all reports that a child may be at risk of abuse or neglect.
  • Provides services to help families in trouble. You can ask for these services on your own. DCF can also ask you to accept services as a condition of letting your children remain in your home.
  • Goes to Court to get permission to remove children from their home if DCF believes that the children are at risk of abuse or neglect. The Court can order you to accept services from DCF as a condition before getting your children back.
  • Is also a licensed child placement agency and can place children in foster care, voluntarily or though a court order.
  • Arranges for the adoption of children.
Produced by Massachusetts Law Reform Institute

Find Legal Aid

You may be able to get free legal help from your local legal aid program. Or email a question about your own legal problem to a lawyer.

Ask a Law Librarian

If it's
Monday-Friday
between
9am and 4pm