Wake County cares about and is responsible for the safety and protection of its citizens. 

Child Protective Services (CPS) is a service provided by Wake County to make sure that our children are safe and protected from harm. We work with families who become involved with CPS using practices and strategies that focus on the family's strengths and work together to build upon these strengths. 

Involvement with CPS includes participation in one or more services, programs and initiatives, which aim to address the immediate and future needs of each family member.  By participating, families will become stronger and better able to meet their child or children's needs.

Wake County also works alongside many community partners, who provide our families with additional support services and resources.


The Process

Intake social workers receive reports of alleged abuse or neglect from community professionals, such as teachers, doctors and the police, as well as from citizens and family members.  These reports are documented using a structured tool that follows state guidelines.  The information taken will help the social worker determine if the report will be accepted for assessment.

For a report to be accepted for Assessment, allegations in the report have to meet state requirements for acceptance. 

If the report is not accepted for assessment, letters are sent to the family and the person or agency making the report, letting them know of this decision. The family does not need any CPS intervention and CPS will not be making any further contact with the family regarding the allegations made in the report.

If the report is accepted for assessment, then, depending upon the allegations made, the assessment will follow one of two Multiple Response Tracks (MRS): Family Assessment or Investigative Assessment.

During the course of the assessment, the social worker will visit the family to discuss the allegations made in the report.  The social worker may make more than one visit and may meet with others, in addition to family members. 

At this time, the social worker will determine if there are any immediate needs of the family and will work with family members to see these needs are met.  The social worker will also determine if any child or children living in the home can remain safely in the home during the assessment. 

If a child can not remain safely in a home, living arrangements will be discussed with the parent to see if a relative or some one known to the parent or parents can safely care for the child or children.  If this is not possible, the child or children may need to be taken into custody of Wake County and placed in our Foster Care program.

Once the social worker has gathered all necessary information, a decision will be made concerning any further involvement with CPS.  This decision will be either that the allegations were not true or that the allegations were true.

If the allegations were not true, then there is no need for intervention from CPS and CPS will not be making any further contact with the family regarding the allegations in the report.

If the allegations were found to be true, then a case will be opened and the family will be asked to participate in our In Home Services program.  


If you suspect a child has been abused, neglected or become dependent, please call our Report Line at 919-212-7990 (English) or 919-212-7963 (Spanish).

To learn more about Intake, Assessments and In Home Services, please click on the menu at the left.  We welcome any comments you may have.