Review and Expunction of Central Registries and Reporting Records - North Carolina

Date: May 2018

Right of the Reported Person to Review and Challenge Records

Citation: Gen. Stat. §§ 7B-311(d); 7B-320; 7B-323; 7B-324

The Social Services Commission shall adopt rules regarding the operation of the central registry and responsible individuals list (RIL), including procedures for notifying a responsible individual of a determination of abuse or serious neglect.

The name of an individual who has been identified as a responsible individual shall be placed on the RIL only after one of the following:

  • The individual is properly notified pursuant to § 7B-320 and fails to file a petition for judicial review in a timely manner.
  • The court determines that the individual is a responsible individual as a result of a hearing on the individual's petition for judicial review.
  • The individual is criminally convicted as a result of the same incident involved in an investigative assessment response.

Within 5 working days after the completion of an investigation that results in a determination of abuse or serious neglect and the identification of a responsible individual, the director of the Department of Social Services shall deliver written notice of the determination to the identified individual. The notice shall include all of the following:

  • The nature of the investigation
  • That the individual has been identified as a responsible individual
  • A summary of the evidence supporting determination
  • A statement that unless the individual petitions for judicial review, his or her name will be placed on the RIL
  • A description of the actions the individual must take to seek judicial review of the determination
  • A copy of a petition for judicial review form

The person must file a petition for judicial review within 15 days of the receipt of the notice. Failure to timely file the petition constitutes a waiver of the person's right to a district court hearing and to contest the placement of the individual's name on the RIL.

Upon the filing of a petition, the court clerk shall calendar the matter for hearing within 45 days. At the hearing, the director shall have the burden of proving by a preponderance of evidence the abuse or serious neglect and the identification of the person seeking judicial review as a responsible individual.

Upon receipt of a notice of a hearing, the director shall review all records, reports, and other information gathered during the investigation. If after a review, the director determines that there is not sufficient evidence to support a determination that the person abused or seriously neglected the child and is a responsible individual, the director shall prepare a written statement of the determination and deliver the statement to the individual seeking judicial review. The director also shall give written notice of the director's determination to the court clerk, and the judicial review hearing shall be cancelled.

Within 30 days after completion of the hearing, the court shall enter an order containing findings of fact and conclusions of law. If the court concludes that the director has not established by a preponderance of evidence abuse or serious neglect or the identification of the responsible individual, the court shall reverse the director's determination and order the director not to place the individual's name on the RIL. If the court concludes that the director has established by a preponderance of the evidence abuse or serious neglect and the identification of the individual seeking judicial review as a responsible individual, the court shall order the director to place the individual's name on the RIL.

A person who has been identified as a responsible individual may not petition for judicial review if either of the following apply:

  • The person is criminally convicted as a result of the same incident.
  • After proper notice, the person fails to file a petition for judicial review with the district court in a timely manner.

When Records Must Be Expunged

Citation: Gen. Stat. § 7B-311(d)

The Social Services Commission shall adopt rules regarding the operation of the central registry and RIL, including procedures for correcting and expunging information.