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Legal Ease
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Category: Canada Law
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Am I obligated by Alberta law to press charges on someone who

Customer Question

Am I obligated by Alberta law to press charges on someone who has violated my child? Even if my child does not want to press charges? I am not able to access counseling for him apparently without doing so first. I am asking because I do not want my child to go through anymore unneccesary truama.
Submitted: 6 months ago.
Category: Canada Law
Expert:  Ulysses101 replied 6 months ago.
Hello, thank you for the question.How old is the child? Can you tell me little bit about what happened, without identifying anyone involved?
Customer: replied 6 months ago.
My son is 14 years old. He will soon be 15. I have just learned that he was molested by a family friend 6 years ago in a different province. However, the man is living now in the same city here in Edmonton Alberta. My son came to me asking for help in dealing with this. I am unable to access counseling for him without pressing charges first.
Expert:  Ulysses101 replied 6 months ago.
I know what I think, but I'm going to opt out. This is a very specific issue and perhaps a lawyer with some exact experience in Alberta on this will pick up the thread.
Expert:  Legal Ease replied 6 months ago.
I am sorry to hear of this very difficult situation. In Alberta you actually have a legal obligation to report when you suspect abuse. This is required by the CHILD , YOUTH AND FAMILY ENHANCEMENT ACT. You are not required to lay charges but you are required to report the abuse to Child protective services. They will involve the police if they believe that that is required. Even if you call the place, you are not laying charges but you are giving the police a report and they decide if charges should be laid. Does that help?

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