Procedural Guide by IMcRjU2

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									                                   Procedural Guide

                                      0300-503.20

                 WRITING THE WIC 366.26 HEARING REPORT


Date Issued: Effective Date 07/21/11 NOTE: The effective date applies to only those
sections highlighted in yellow, the rest of the procedures are currently in effect. This will
allow time for SCSW to inform their CSWs of the changes.

    New Policy Release

    Revision of Existing Procedural Guide 0300-503.20, Writing the WIC 366.26
    Hearing Report, dated 09/22/10

    Revision Made: NOTE: Current Revisions are Highlighted

    This Procedural Guide has been revised per AB 743 (2010) amendments to WIC
    16002 adding that the court must find clear and convincing evidence that sibling
    interaction is contrary to the safety or well-being of the child before the required
    steps to facilitate sibling contact may be terminated. Revisions have been added
    per AB 12 (2010), the “California Fostering Connections to Success Act” to WIC
    360(a) and 11363 changing eligibility requirements for the Kin GAP program by
    reducing the length of time that a youth must reside in the approved home of the
    prospective relative guardian while under the jurisdiction of the juvenile court or a
    voluntary placement agreement from 12 consecutive months to 6 consecutive
    months. Added instructions for provision of the JV350 to prospective KinGAP
    guardians. Removed reference to the DCFS 5555 which has been cancelled and
    replaced by the updated Kin-GAP forms: SOC 369 and SOC 369A. Removed
    instructions to use the Case Review Tool when completing the Termination of
    Parental Rights (TPR) case review.

Cancels: None



                               DEPARTMENTAL VALUES

This Procedural Guide supports the Department’s efforts to obtain timely permanency
for every child by outlining how the WIC 366.26 court report is written thereby
preventing any unnecessary delay in court proceedings.




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                            WHAT CASES ARE AFFECTED

This Procedural Guide is applicable to all new and existing cases.
                               OPERATIONAL IMPACT

The Department of Children and Family Services believes that every child is entitled to
a permanent home and a permanent family relationship. Achieving timely legal
permanency for every child in out-of-home care is a top priority. DCFS is striving to
provide all children with a legal permanent plan of reunification, adoption or legal
guardianship. Of these, safe reunification is the top priority. A Planned Permanent
Living Arrangement (PPLA) plan for our children is not considered an acceptable
permanent plan.

The purpose of a WIC 366.26 hearing is to identify and implement a permanent plan for
a dependent child of the court. At this hearing, the court will review the report prepared
by the CSW and receive evidence that other parties may present. The court will then
make findings and orders in the order of preference as stated in WIC 366.26(b).

The WIC 366.26 hearing is calendared within 120 days of a dispositional hearing at
which the court ordered no Family Reunification (FR) services or of a status review
hearing at which the court ordered the termination of Family Reunification services.

Responsibility for Completing the WIC 366.26

   Under Concurrent Planning Redesign (CPR), the WIC 366.26 report recommending
    termination of parental rights and adoptions as the permanent plan, is completed by
    the WIC 366.26 Dependency Investigator (.26 DI) and the Adoption and
    Permanency Resources Division (APRD) CSW. The .26 DI shall create the report
    and write all aspects of the report except those sections relating to the prospective
    adoptive family or the child’s readiness for adoption, which are written by the APRD
    CSW. However, the APRD CSW may create the report, if he or she is ready to input
    their information and it is not already created. Both the Dependency Investigator(DI)
    and the APRD CSW shall indicate which sections he or she has written by noting the
    phrase, “This section is respectfully submitted by…” and “This concludes the section
    respectfully submitted by…” at the beginning and end of each section. The .26 DI is
    responsible for entering the name of each CSW contributing to the content of the
    report at the top left hand corner of the report. If the APRD CSW does not complete
    their portion of the report in a timely manner, and the DI has already completed their
    portion of the report, the APRD CSW will sign the report and submit it to court.

    The case-carrying CSW shall be consulted on the readiness to proceed with
    termination of parental rights or on any change of recommendation but is not
    responsible for writing any segment of the report.

   The DI from the office or SPA/Region where the service case is open completes the
    WIC 366.26 report if legal guardianship is the recommended plan.



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   The case-carrying CSW shall refer a case to a DI, for adoption and legal
    guardianship recommendations, by completing and submitting a DCFS 4141, DI
    366.26 Referral Form and attachments i.e., CPA and copy of the birth certificate to
    the regional DI SCSW. The form can be generated from CWS/CMS, Case
    Management Section (Green button) under county-specific forms.


     NOTE: The DCFS 4141 shall be submitted prior to any applicable hearing in
           which the Department will be recommending termination of Family
           Reunification (FR) services and/or asking that a WIC 366.26
           Selection and Implementation hearing be set. Best practice suggests
           that the request form be submitted 45 days prior to the
           aforementioned hearing. However, the 45 days shall be considered
           a suggested time frame and cases may still be referred following the
           45 days mark. A .26 DI may be assigned up to 30 days following the
           setting of the WIC 366.26 hearing. As outlined in the DCFS 4141
           task matrix per CPR FYI 08-06, Requesting Assignment of a .26 DI
           Guide, the case-carrying CSW will take on additional task
           responsibilities if the DCFS 4141 is submitted on or after the WIC
           366.26 hearing is already set.


   If the identified plan changes from adoption to legal guardianship or PPLA, under
    CPR, the .26 DI and the APRD CSW are responsible for writing the WIC 366.26
    report reflecting the change of recommendation from adoption to legal guardianship
    or PPLA. If the plan is changed to legal guardianship, the DI does the whole report,
    and the APRD CSW does not do any part of the report. If the plan is PPLA, the
    services CSW does the report and notices. DI only completes reports addressing
    legal guardianship or termination of parental rights.

   If after the DI’s receipt of the packet, the identified plan changes from legal
    guardianship to adoption, under CPR, the case-carrying CSW shall submit a court
    report to address the change in the plan and the need to either request a
    continuance or to advance and vacate the original hearing date per consultation with
    the county counsel. The case-carrying CSW shall also be responsible in providing
    and completing any other additional documents necessary e.g. revised Concurrent
    Planning Assessment, etc. The DI SCSW can choose to assign the writing of the
    WIC 336.26 hearing report to the DI already assigned to the case or to re-assign it to
    another .26 DI.

   If after the DI’s receipt of the packet, the identified plan changes from legal
    guardianship or adoption to PPLA, and if there is sufficient time to complete legal
    notice, the case-carrying CSW shall complete the report. If there is insufficient time
    to complete legal notice, the case-carrying CSW shall submit a request to continue
    the WIC 366.26 hearing. When a new WIC 366.26 hearing date is set, the case-



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   carrying CSW shall notice all required parties. The case-carrying CSW shall
   complete the WIC 366.26 report.


     NOTE: For vertical case management sections that do not have DI's, the
           responsibilities assigned to a DI as referenced above would be carried
           out by the case-carrying CSW.


It is good practice that CSWs are cognizant that there may be times when a court report
will contain sensitive information that a child had no prior knowledge of and that this
information will greatly upset the child. In order to prepare a child for the disclosure of
such sensitive information, CSWs shall make a face-to-face contact with the child to
discuss the sensitive information prior to the child receiving the court report in the mail.
Best practice dictates that this is done in a sensitive and age appropriate manner and in
some cases may be best done in a therapeutic setting.

In some rare instances it may be appropriate to not provide the child with a copy of the
report and/or disclose this information to the child. This should be done only after
consulting with your SCSW, County Counsel and with the child’s attorney.


                                       Procedures

Upon receipt of the DCFS 4141 (for adoption or legal guardianship recommendation)
and attachments i.e. CPA and copy of the birth certificate, the DI shall interview all
parties and prepare the WIC 366.26 report. Within seven calendar days of the court’s
order calendaring the WIC 366.26 hearing, the DI, if referral is received prior to the
setting of the WIC 366.26 hearing, shall send appropriate notice to all required parties.
See CPR FYI 08-06, Requesting Assignment of a .26 DI Guide and Procedural Guide
0300-306.05, Notice of Hearing For Juvenile Court Proceedings, for more information.


A. WHEN:          AT LEAST 30 CALENDAR DAYS PRIOR TO THE WIC 366.26
                  HEARING

CSW Preparing the Report Responsibilities

1. Prior to creating the report, review the on-line case record to ensure that all
   identifying information (e.g., names, addresses, etc.) and court information (e.g.,
   past hearing dates, notices of hearing, attorneys’ names, etc.) are recorded and
   current. If necessary, update the case record. Utilize the SDM Online Help System
   for completing the tools and for definition of terms. Incorporate the information
   gathered from these documents into the report. Do not attach any SDM tools
   when submitting documents to court, unless ordered by the court to do so.




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   In addition, if the .26 DI is completing the report, he or she shall complete the TPR
   case review.
2. Complete the report at least 30 calendar days prior to the scheduled hearing.
   Complete all appropriate fields on the report not populated by the database.
    If a section is unnecessary, delete the heading. If needed, manually enter any
    information not found in the application. Provide the following information in the
    indicated fields:
    REMINDER:         Incorporate all observation and findings made during all contacts
                      (face to face, telephone, mail, etc.) with the child, parents, siblings,
                      relatives, caregivers, collateral contacts, etc. throughout the body of
                      the report during the last period of supervision, as appropriate.
    Under CP Redesign, the .26 DI shall create the WIC 366.26 report in CWS/CMS no
    later than 40 days prior to the hearing and thereafter complete all of the sections of
    the report he or she is responsible for. The APRD CSW writes the portions she is
    responsible for directly onto the report on CSW/CMS.


     NOTE: The APRD CSW may also generate the report on CWS/CMS. However,
           to avoid not having the notice information populate the .26 report, the
           APRD CSW should generate the report no sooner than 39-days prior to
           the scheduled hearing.


IN THE MATTER OF
This information will populate from the Hearing Notebook and the child’s Client
Notebook

CHILD(REN)’S WHEREABOUTS
List the name of each child named in the report. Enter each child’s address,
caregiver’s name, exact relationship to the child, address and telephone number.


  NOTE: Pursuant to the Welfare and Institutions Code Section 308(a), the address
        of a licensed foster family home must be kept confidential until the
        dispositional hearing at which time the court may authorize disclosure of the
        address. However, a foster parent may authorize the release of the address
        of the foster family home at any time during the placement. See Procedural
        Guide 0100-502.51, Maintaining Confidentiality of a Child’s Placement for
        more information.
           If the court has issued a non-disclosure order, enter “non-disclosure order
           issued (enter date)” after the child’s name. See Procedural Guide 0300-
           303.07, Nondisclosure Orders.



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If the child is attached or placed in the home of a caregiver who has signed an
application to adopt a child, the identity and whereabouts of the caregiver shall remain
confidential. Enter “child is attached or placed in the home of an applicant” after the
child’s name.

Paste a current photograph of each child into this section below the entered text. If
unable to paste a current color photograph of each child to the report, black and white
photos are acceptable. See Procedural Guide 1200-500.50, Photographic Identification
of Children.

PARENTS

This information will populate from the parent’s Client Notebook. If a parent’s address is
confidential, delete the address and enter “Confidential.” If the identity of a parent or the
requested information in the grid is unknown, enter “unknown” in the spaces provided.

OTHERS

Select only those individuals who have a direct interest in the child. [e.g., child’s legal
guardian(s), substitute care provider, relatives (when the parent’s whereabouts are
unknown), etc]. It is not necessary to list collateral contacts in this section. If
necessary, edit/enter data directly into these fields.

INTERPRETER

Complete this section only if an interpreter is needed at the hearing.

ATTORNEYS

All information in this field is populated from the database with the exception of
information regarding attorneys representing tribes or tribal organizations.
This information must be entered manually. If necessary, edit/enter data directly into
these fields.

INDIAN CHILD WELFARE ACT STATUS

Check the Client Notebook for information on the child’s Indian status. CSWs have the
affirmative and on-going duty to inquire if a child is an Indian child. CSWs must provide
active efforts when there is reason to know that the child falls under the Indian Child
Welfare Act, and these efforts shall be reported in this section. Active efforts are
casework activities that go beyond reasonable efforts. See Procedural Guide 1200-
500.05, The Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA), for more detailed information.

The following are suggested best practice guidelines for providing active efforts:

1. A request to the Indian child’s tribe to convene traditional and customary support
   and resolution actions or services.


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2. Identification and participation of tribally designated representatives at the earliest
   point.
3. Consultation with extended family members to identify family structure and family
   support that may be provided by extended family members.
4. Frequent visitation in the Indian child’s home and the homes of the child’s extended
   family members.
5. Exhaustion of all tribally appropriate family preservation alternatives.
6. Identification and provision of information to the child’s family concerning community
   resources that may be able to offer housing, financial, and transportation assistance
   and actively assist the family in accessing the community resources.

In addition, consultation and partnership with the Indian child’s tribe should begin as
soon as the child is declared ICWA eligible and should be an on-going process,
including during concurrent planning. As early as possible in concurrent planning, the
alternative permanency options, including tribal customary adoption, shall be discussed
with the child’s tribe. See Tribal Customary Adoption heading below for more
information.

If new information is obtained on the child’s Indian status, re-notice all appropriate
parties. In addition, complete the ICWA 010A and attach to the report. See Procedural
Guide 0300-306.05, Notice of Hearing for Juvenile Court Proceedings for detailed
instructions. Include a summary of all contacts with tribal representatives, tribal
membership status and whether or not the tribe is federally recognized. Also, indicate
whether the tribe(s) and/or the Bureau of Indian Affairs and the Secretary of Interior
have been notified that dependent child proceedings have been initiated on the child's
behalf and whether the tribe, if known, has been notified of their right to intervene. If a
tribe was notified, provide its name.

If the child is or may be an American Indian, clearly document in detail all active efforts
made to locate an American Indian home for the child's placement. Such efforts include
but are not limited to:

   Utilize the available resources of the Indian child’s extended family, tribe, and other
    Indian social service agencies, and individual Indian caregiver services providers.

   If there are appropriate American Indian placement alternatives for the child, enter
    justification for not placing the child with an Indian caregiver.

   Summarize the contacts made with the tribal representative including tribal
    membership status and whether the tribe is federally recognized.

Also, indicate whether the tribe(s) and/or the Bureau of Indian Affairs and the Secretary
of Interior have been notified that dependent child proceedings have been initiated on
the child's behalf and whether the tribe, if known, has been notified of their right to
intervene. If a tribe was notified, provide its name. Notify the tribe(s) if it was not
previously done. Attach any correspondence received from the tribe(s) and/or Bureau


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of Indian Affairs to the report. If the child’s Indian Child Welfare Act status is not
resolved, contact the County Counsel listed on the minute order for further instructions
and information on how to proceed. See Procedural Guide 0300-306.05, Notice of
Hearing for Juvenile Court Proceedings for detailed instructions.

If the child is not in a placement that meets ICWA preferences, document what efforts
were made to find such placement. Include dates of all actions taken.

At the first court appearance, the court will order the parent to complete the ICWA-020,
Parental Notification of Indian Status. If the parent is not present at the first court
appearance, the court will order DCFS to use reasonable diligence to locate the parent
and inform him/her that the court has ordered the parent to complete the ICWA-020.
Once the parent(s) is located, have the parent complete the ICWA-020 and submit it as
an attachment to the court report.

Tribal Customary Adoption (TCA)

WIC 366.24(b) states that whenever an assessment is ordered pursuant to Section
361.5, 366.21, 366.22, 366.25, or 366.26 for Indian children, the assessment shall
address the option of TCA. Once a hearing is set pursuant to WIC 366.26 and the
Indian child’s tribe recommends TCA, the court will review the report as specified in the
WIC codes cited above and other evidence, and order, without termination of parental
rights (TPR), the plan of TCA. Only the tribe can select TCA as an option for the Indian
child. This statute only applies to a California dependent Indian child who is eligible
under ICWA and whose parents’ rights have not been terminated. The tribe does not
have to be a California tribe. It does not apply to independent or inter-country adoption,
an Indian child who is a probation ward or has been voluntarily relinquished to an
agency by his or her parents. Though it became operative July 1, 2010, it may be a
permanency option for any California dependent Indian child as long as the dependency
case is open and parental rights have not been terminated, regardless of the date the
child became a dependent.


  NOTE: If TPR has occurred, but the adoption has not been finalized, upon the
        tribe’s recommendation that the permanent plan be changed to TCA, the
        juvenile court, pursuant to WIC 366.26 (i)(2), would then have the discretion
        to reinstate parental rights and order a new hearing to determine if TCA is
        the most appropriate permanent plan for the child. DCFS shall work closely
        with the tribe to ensure this information is submitted in the 366.26 report.


TCA means adoption by and through the tribal custom, traditions, or law of an Indian
child's tribe. The statute gives the Indian child’s tribe the authority to recommend TCA
as the permanency option for the Indian child without the requirement of TPR. Prior to
this statute, one of the cited reasons why adoption was not recommended by tribes
and/or accepted by Indian families was because TPR “conflicts with many tribal


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teachings and cultural values as it severs the child’s tribal family systems, connections
to extended family members, and to the tribe”. In addition, TPR may also result in the
Indian child losing the benefits afforded only to a member of the tribe. With TCA, Indian
children and families will be able to achieve the permanency entailed with adoption and
receive adoption assistance benefits (i.e. AAP). Even without TPR, the parental rights
are modified as outlined in the Tribal Customary Adoption Order (TCAO), to be
completed by the child’s tribe, after TCA is ordered as the permanent plan at the WIC
366.26 hearing. TCA likewise affords the adoptive parent(s) the same rights and
privileges as other adoptive parents, and are subject to all the duties of other adoptive
parents consistent with the TCAO. Where any rights are not specified in the TCAO, the
rights and obligations will be with the tribal customary adoptive parent(s).


  NOTE: TCA is optional, i.e. the tribe is not required to choose TCA as the
        permanent plan. If the tribe does not recommend TCA, DCFS would
        facilitate the alternative plan utilizing current process and procedures.


Pursuant to the above information, state in this section the efforts made to consult with
the child’s tribe regarding permanency options for the child, including the option of TCA.
DCFS must receive a written statement from the tribe of its selection of TCA. If TCA is
recommended by the tribe, state whether this is an appropriate permanent plan for the
child and the reason(s). If not recommended by the tribe, state the tribe’s
recommendation and your assessment of whether or not this is an appropriate
permanent plan for the child and the reason(s).

See Procedural Guides 1200-500.05, The Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA) and 0200-
515.05, Adoption of Children Under the Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA), for more
detailed information.

If the child does not come under the provisions of ICWA or is not an American Indian
child from a federally recognized tribe, indicate the date the court made that finding.

Pursuant to WIC 391, at any hearing to terminate jurisdiction over a dependent child
who has reached the age of majority, the youth shall be provided written information
regarding the child's Indian heritage and/or tribal connections.

NOTICES

All information in this field is populated from the database. Ensure that the information
(names, addresses, method used to notice, etc.) regarding the parties entitled to notice,
is accurate. If necessary, edit/enter data directly into these fields. If notice was by
publication, ensure that the proof of publication and the DCFS 4380 are attached to the
report. Attach the notices and a certified copy of the child’s birth certificate to the report.




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  NOTE: Non-federally recognized tribes do not have the same rights as federally
        recognized tribes. However, the court may allow these tribes to be noticed
        and participate in court proceeding. If so, send the JV 280 and JV 510
        notice. See Procedural Guide 0300-306.05, Notice of Hearing for Juvenile
        Court Proceedings, for detailed instructions.

           Pursuant to WIC 294, TCA is added as a permanency option when noticing
           parents regarding a selection and implementation hearing as specified by
           WIC 366.26. Current noticing standards (JV 300) for this hearing shall be
           applied for a TCA.


Pursuant to WIC 349(d), if the child is 10 years of age or older, the child must be
advised of his or her right to attend the hearing and be given the opportunity to attend
the hearing. The report shall state whether or not the child/youth wishes to attend the
hearing.


  NOTE: Pursuant to WIC 349(d), if the child is 10 years of age or older, he/she has
        the right to attend the hearing and must be given the opportunity to attend,
        even if the child is incarcerated/institutionalized. CSWs are to arrange for
        the child’s transportation if the child wishes to attend the hearing. If the
        child was not properly notified or if he or she wished to be present and was
        not given the opportunity to be present, the court will continue the hearing to
        allow the minor to be present unless the court finds that it is in the best
        interest of the minor not to continue the hearing. See Procedural Guide
        0300-306.80, Transportation Requests to Bring Children to Court for
        information on arranging a child’s transportation and Procedural Guide
        0300-306.45, Removal Orders for information on how to request for an
        incarcerated child to appear in a dependency court proceeding.


SEARCH RESULTS/HISTORY

If the whereabouts of a parent is unknown and a due diligence report for that parent was
previously submitted, enter the following in the text field: “See previously submitted Due
Diligence report for (enter the name of the parent) dated (enter date).” See Procedural
Guide 0300-306.75, Due Diligence, for more information.

LEGAL HISTORY

Hearing information in this field is populated from the database. These dates come
from the hearings in which the Hearings Results pages have specific findings and/or
orders entered. Sections that do not populate at this time are the Abuse Description
section and the Non-Reunification section. This information must be entered. Ensure


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that the information is complete and accurate. If necessary, edit/enter data directly into
these fields.

    Additional Legal History

    Enter the following:

    List the date the WIC 300 petition was filed and the date the petition was sustained.
    List the exact language of the sustained supporting fact(s) on the WIC 300 petition.
    If any of the sustained supporting facts contain the exact same language, it is only
    necessary to enter the sustained supporting fact once.

         Example:     a-1, c-1, and d-1:

         On or about March 5, 1999 and on prior occasions, the child Lisa Conflict was
         sexually abused by her father, Fred Payne. Said abuse included, but not
         limited to, fondling of the child’s breasts. Further, the child’s mother, Ann Marie
         Conflict, failed to protect the child. Such conduct by the child’s father and her
         mother’s failure to protect the child, endangered the child’s physical and
         emotional health and safety and places the child at risk of further sexual abuse.

         If applicable, describe the filing of any additional petitions (WIC 342, 387 or
         388), jurisdictional transfers, and/or prior dependency court proceedings. If a
         supplemental/subsequent petition was filed, indicate the date it was filed, the
         type of petition (WIC 387 or 342) and the name of the child on whose behalf the
         petition was filed. Indicate the date it was sustained or dismissed. List the
         sustained supporting fact(s) of the petition, using the exact language of the
         sustained supporting facts.

REASON FOR HEARING

Provide a brief description of the circumstances that led to the child coming before the
court. Additionally, enter: “The matter is now before the court to identify and implement
a permanent plan for the child [enter the name(s) of the child].”

PATERNITY/LEGAL RELATIONSHIPS

Provide all available information regarding the paternity of the child and supporting
documentation, including but not limited to, deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) paternity
testing results, Human Leukocyte Antigens (HLA) results; court orders; divorce decrees;
death certificates, birth certificates, JV-505, Statement Regarding Paternity (Juvenile
Dependency), and other documentation, include dates whenever possible.

The JV-505 is a document that the alleged father completes to help the court determine
paternity and to indicate the alleged natural father’s desire to participate in further
dependency proceedings. Document, if applicable, that a JV-505 has been sent to



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each alleged father. Report on the return of the JV-505 and attach it to the report. If a
JV-501, Paternity-Finding and Judgment (Juvenile Dependency) is available, attach it to
the report. If an alleged father denies paternity on a JV-505, no further notice is
required and he is no longer part of the case.

If a court has made a paternity ruling (either to rule out an alleged father or to make a
finding and declaration of paternity), indicate how this determination was made, the date
of the court ruling, and the name of the court that issued the ruling.


  NOTE: The above-cited definitions are provided as a guide for the CSW to provide
        the court with the necessary facts for the court to make the determination
        whether a man is the alleged or presumed father. CSWs are not to make
        the legal determination. For your information, you may refer to the
        Glossary Section in LA Kids for definitions of alleged and presumed father.


When the identity of the father is unknown, enter: “The identity of [enter the name of the
child’s] father is unknown.”

PERMANENCY PLANNING ASSESSMENT

Evaluation of Child(ren)

Create separate sections for each child in the report. Discuss the finding from the
children’s portion of the SDM Family Strengths and Needs Reassessment tool (items
CSN1 through CSN9) without referencing the tool itself. Do not attach any SDM tools
when submitting documents to court, unless ordered by the court to do so.

Following the heading titled “Regarding:,” enter the child’s name. Address all
medical/dental, developmental, educational, mental and emotional health status of the
child and recommendations and goals to meet the child’s identified educational,
physical, mental health, and developmental needs per instructions below.

    Medical

    Attach the Health and Education Passport (HEP) to the court report and state the
    following:

         The Court is respectfully referred to the attached Health and Education
         Passport for information regarding the child’s medical/health and dental status.

    Only if pertinent information under this section needs to be reported to Court but
    cannot be recorded in any of the fields or in the Comment Section of the HEP,
    provide a summary of that information in this report by stating:




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         In addition to the information contained in the attached HEP, the following is
         provided to the Court:

    See FYI 10-10, Health And Education Passport - Court Report Implementation and
    Procedural Guide 0080-505.20, Health and Education Passport (HEP), for more
    information, including the required information that shall be recorded in the HEP and
    which meet the Court’s expectations.

    Developmental

    Attach the Health and Education Passport (HEP) to the court report and state the
    following:

         The Court is respectfully referred to the attached Health and Education
         Passport for information regarding the child’s developmental status.

    Only if pertinent information under this section needs to be reported to Court but
    cannot be recorded in any of the fields or in the Comment Section of the HEP,
    provide a summary of that information in this report by stating:

         In addition to the information contained in the attached HEP, the following is
         provided to the Court:

    See FYI 10-10, Health And Education Passport - Court Report Implementation and
    Procedural Guide 0080-505.20, Health and Education Passport (HEP), for more
    information including the required information that shall be recorded in the HEP and
    which meet the Court’s expectations.

    Educational
    Attach the Health and Education Passport (HEP) to the court report and state the
    following:

         The Court is respectfully referred to the attached Health and Education
         Passport for information regarding the child’s educational status.

    Only if pertinent information under this section needs to be reported to Court but
    cannot be recorded in any of the fields or in the Comment Section of the HEP,
    provide a summary of that information in this report by stating:

         In addition to the information contained in the attached HEP, the following is
         provided to the Court:

    See FYI 10-10, Health And Education Passport - Court Report Implementation and
    Procedural Guide 0080-505.20, Health and Education Passport (HEP), for more
    information, including the required information that shall be recorded in the HEP and
    which meet the Court’s expectations.


0300-503.20 (Rev. 07/11)                                                       Page 13 of 35
    Mental and Emotional Status

    Attach the Health and Education Passport (HEP) to the court report and state the
    following:

         The Court is respectfully referred to the attached Health and Education
         Passport for information regarding the child’s mental and emotional status.

    Only if pertinent information under this section needs to be reported to Court but
    cannot be recorded in any of the fields or in the Comment Section of the HEP,
    provide a summary of that information in this report by stating:

         In addition to the information contained in the attached HEP, the following is
         provided to the Court:

    See FYI 10-10, Health And Education Passport - Court Report Implementation and
    Procedural Guide 0080-505.20, Health and Education Passport (HEP), for more
    information including the required information that shall be recorded in the HEP and
    which meet the Court’s expectations.

    Placement History

    Enter all requested information in the grid. In the text field, discuss additional
    relevant placement history, including the dates of each placement and replacement,
    if appropriate. Do not disclose placement information of a child who is attached or
    placed in a prospective adoptive home. Enter the caregiver’s comments provided
    on the JV 290 if available, and discuss any action that was taken.

    If the child has severe emotional or behavior problems, indicate whether or not if the
    child is receiving the D-rate. If the assessment for the D-rate is pending, indicate
    this fact. If the child has a serious medical condition, physical disability or
    developmental delay, indicate whether the child is receiving or pending receipt of
    the F-1, F-2, F-3 or F-4 or dual agency and/or supplement rate and describe the
    medical condition, physical disability or developmental delay which qualified the
    child for the rate. If applicable, indicate the status of a request for a dual agency
    and/or supplemental rate and describe the medical condition, physical disability or
    developmental delay which qualified the child for the rate.

    If the child has an existing and/or a potential medical/mental/developmental
    disability, state if a referral and/or application has been made for Supplemental
    Security Income (SSI) and the date it was made, and/or the result of the
    referral/application, or if child is already receiving SSI and who is the payee. See
    Procedural Guide 0900-523.10, Supplemental Security Income (SSI) For Children
    with Disabilities, for more information.




0300-503.20 (Rev. 07/11)                                                       Page 14 of 35
    If the child is placed in a FFA or group home, address the information detailed in the
    current quarterly report and be sure to attach that report to the court report.

    If the child is residing in a group home, include the reason(s) or the continued need
    for group home placement. See Procedural Guide 080-504.11. Case Plan/Court
    Report: Court Report Requirements for Children Residing in Group Homes and
    0100-510.10 Placing Children Six Years of Age or Younger In Congregate Care, for
    more information.

    If recommending that the child be placed out of state or if the child has been placed
    out of state, address whether the out-of-state placement would or continues to be
    the most appropriate placement selection and in the best interests of the child.

    If the child is an American Indian but not in a placement that meets ICWA
    preferences, document what efforts were made to find such placement. Include
    dates of all actions taken. Refer to the ICWA section of this Procedural Guide for
    more information.

History of Contacts Between Child and Family

Record the amount and nature of any contacts (including visits, telephone calls, letters,
etc. and, whenever possible, the dates of those contacts) between the child and his/her
parents and other members of his/her extended family, since the time of the child’s
initial placement. Be specific and give details. For the purposes of this subsection,
“extended family” shall include, but not be limited to, the child’s siblings, grandparents,
aunts, and uncles. Indicate any pattern of missed scheduled visits/telephone calls by a
parent or extended family member and the effect on the child. Discuss the quality of the
contacts, the effect of the contacts on the child and state who provided the information
about the contacts (e.g., child, caregiver, parent, therapist, CSW, etc.). Include a
statement requesting that visitation be decreased and/or terminated if it is detrimental to
the child and/or precludes adoptive planning.


  NOTE: Per WIC 16002, in order for siblings to be separated/not placed together
        there must be clear and convincing evidence that sibling contact is contrary
        to the safety or well-being of the child.




0300-503.20 (Rev. 07/11)                                                      Page 15 of 35
Analysis of the Likelihood of Adoption and Proposed Permanent Plan


    NOTE: If the recommendation is adoption, under CPR, this section shall be
          completed by the APRD CSW. The APRD CSW shall indicate which
          sections he or she has written by noting the following phrase at the
          beginning and end of each section:

           “This section is respectfully submitted by {insert APRD CSW’s name}” and;
           “This concludes the section respectfully submitted by {insert APRD CSW’s
           name}”.


Record specific and clearly presented facts, including the identified permanency
alternative found in the most current Concurrent Planning Assessment (CPA) and
attach the CPA to the report. If appropriate, indicate the status of the current
caregiver’s home study or the status of placement with an approved adoptive applicant
family. List in detail all the information (e.g., receipt of birth, marriage, divorce, and/or
medical exam documents, etc.) required to complete the home study and provide a
timeline as to the steps necessary to complete the home study and the name of the
assigned Applicant (“A”) CSW, outside adoption agency social worker or tribal
agency/designee.

The ICWA requires the testimony of a qualified expert witness at the Permanent Plan
Hearing (WIC 366.26) when recommending termination of parental rights in an Indian
child custody proceeding. Include a summary of the expert witness’ final
recommendation report. Attach a copy of the qualified expert witness’ final
recommendation report to the WIC 366.26 report. There is no requirement for a
qualified expert witness for the WIC 366.26 hearing when recommending TCA.

In the case of an Indian child, further state in this section the efforts made to consult
with the child’s tribe regarding permanency options for the child, including the option of
TCA. If TCA is recommended by the tribe, state if this is an appropriate permanent plan
for the child and the reason(s). If not recommended by the tribe, state the tribe’s
recommendation and your assessment of whether or not this is an appropriate
permanent plan for the child and the reason(s).

The court may find that there are compelling reasons for determining that termination of
parental rights would not be in the best interest of an Indian child:

    Termination of parental rights would substantially interfere with the child’s
     connection to his or her tribal community of the child’s tribal membership rights.

    The child’s tribe has identified guardianship, long-term foster care with a fit and
     willing relative, or another planned permanent living arrangement for the child.



0300-503.20 (Rev. 07/11)                                                          Page 16 of 35
   The rest of the compelling reasons listed under WIC 366.26 (c)(1) A-B also apply to
   Indian children. See Procedural Guide 0200-515.05, Adoption of Children Under the
   Child Welfare Act (ICWA), for more information.

If the prospective adoptive home is a non-Indian home, document how the prospective
adoptive parent is committed to enabling the child to participate in the cultural and
ceremonial events of the child’s tribe and discuss if they agree to the Post-adoption
Contact Agreement. If the Indian child is already in the prospective adoptive home,
document in the court report how the caretaker has demonstrated this commitment by
discussing family visits and participation in cultural and ceremonial events of the child’s
tribe.

If no prospective adoptive family has been identified, provide the date a referral was
made to the Placement and Recruitment Unit (PRU).


  NOTE: If the child resides out-of-state under the provisions of the Interstate
        Compact on the Placement of Children (ICPC), an adoptive home study
        cannot be initiated until the child has been legally freed. However, certain
        states might accept adoption home study requests prior to termination of
        parental rights if there are no legal risks. Please discuss each pre-TPR
        request with the APRD ICPC Coordinator prior to making the referral.
        Information from the ICPC original assessment and subsequent reports
        may be used to assist in the completion of this portion of this report, if the
        information is current and accurate. If the adoption home study cannot be
        initiated until the child has been legally freed, enter the following:
        “Pursuant to California Manual of Policies and Procedures Adoption Users
        Manual Section 35401(a)(1)(A)(3), an adoptive home study cannot be
        initiated until the receiving state receives the AD 4333, Acknowledgment
        and Confirmation of Receipt of Relinquishment Documents, establishing
        that the child has been freed for adoption.”


Discuss the appropriateness of keeping sibling(s) together in the permanent placement,
whether recommending adoption, legal guardianship or long-term foster care. Describe
the nature and extent of the sibling relationship, including the frequency and nature of
visits between siblings. Discuss whether the child was raised in the same home as the
sibling, whether the child shared significant common experiences or has existing close
and strong bonds with a sibling, and whether ongoing contact is in the child’s best
interest. Discuss the impact of the sibling relationships on the child’s placement and
planning for legal permanence including the long-term emotional interest, as compared
with the legal benefit of legal permanency through adoption.

If the recommendation is guardianship or PPLA and the siblings are not placed
together, include information on keeping the siblings informed of significant life events
that occur within the extended family.


0300-503.20 (Rev. 07/11)                                                        Page 17 of 35
If your analysis indicates that adoption is the appropriate plan but that the child is
difficult to place for adoption and there is no identified or available prospective adoptive
parent at this time, describe the previous, ongoing and upcoming efforts and the
projected time frame to locate an adoptive family.

A child 10 years of age or older who is placed in a group home shall be asked to identify
all individuals who are important to the child. Document the child’s response. If the
child names an individual, identify them and their relationship to the child. Indicate
whether or not these individuals were contacted. If they were, state whether or not they
would be willing to provide a permanent home for the child (i.e., adoption or legal
guardianship). A child who 10 years of age or younger may also be asked to provide
this information as appropriate.

If your analysis indicates that adoption is not the appropriate plan and you are not
recommending termination of parental rights, identify the recommended permanent plan
(i.e., legal guardianship or PPLA). If termination of parental rights would be detrimental
to the child, detail the compelling reason(s) as cited in the attached CPA by which the
court may make this finding. Specify those circumstances as indicated in WIC 366.26
(c)(1) A-B. The law provides that a relative caregiver's preference for legal guardianship,
rather than adoption under circumstances that do not include an unwillingness to accept
legal or financial responsibility for the child may not constitute the sole basis for
recommending removal of the child from the relative caregiver for purposes of
adoptive placement.

If PPLA is recommended, refer to the Long-Term Foster Care section of this Procedural
Guide for instructions.

PROSPECTIVE ADOPTIVE PARENTS/LEGAL GUARDIANS


  NOTE: If the recommendation is adoption, under CPR, this section shall be
        completed by the APRD CSW. The APRD CSW shall indicate which
        sections he or she has written by noting the following phrase at the
        beginning and end of each section:

           “This section is respectfully submitted by {insert APRD CSW’s name}” and;
           “This concludes the section respectfully submitted by {insert APRD CSW’s
           name}”.

           If the applicant assessment was completed by an outside adoption agency,
           the APRD CSW obtains the necessary information for the following sections
           from the DCFS 5545 completed by the outside adoption agency social worker.
           Written reports by the outside adoption agency social worker are not to be
           attached to the report for submission to the court but shall be integrated into
           the assessment. Indicate the source of this information in the body of the
           assessment. (continues…)



0300-503.20 (Rev. 07/11)                                                        Page 18 of 35
  (Continuation…)
          For cases in which TCA is determined as the child’s permanent plan, the
          completion of an applicant assessment (aka adoption home study) may be
          made by either the Indian child’s tribe or the tribe’s designee. The required
          written statement from the tribe of its selection of TCA should include
          information on whether the tribe will complete the applicant assessment (aka
          home study) or procure a tribal designee. If the tribe designates an agency to
          complete the applicant assessment, the agency must conduct the TCA
          applicant assessment in consultation with the child’s tribe using the tribe’s
          prevailing social and cultural standards, recommends to the tribe the TCA
          assessment’s approval or denial and then obtains its final approval from the
          tribe. The tribe’s designee may include a licensed county adoption agency
          (such as DCFS), CDSS when it is acting as an adoption agency, or a licensed
          adoption agency. The tribe may choose to complete the TCA assessment and
          if so, DCFS will complete the criminal and child abuse registry background
          checks. If the tribe opts to complete or designate a private agency to
          complete the applicant assessment, the APRD CSW shall obtain from the
          tribe/designee an update of the applicant assessment process (or a copy of
          the applicant assessment if already completed) and as needed, all necessary
          information to complete below sections.


Enter the name(s) of the child after the selected option(s).

If a prospective adoptive parent has not been identified and adoption is the appropriate
plan, describe the previous, ongoing and upcoming recruitment efforts and the projected
time frame to locate an adoptive family. Include the dates of any recruitment event(s)
attended by the child, and, if applicable, any pre-placement conferences and
presentations. Consult with the Placement Recruitment Unit (PRU) and/or the Adoption
APRD CSW to obtain this information.

If a prospective adoptive parent/legal guardian has been identified, complete the
prospective caregiver grid. Create separate sections for each identified prospective
adoptive family/legal guardian(s).

WIC 366.21(I)(2) and 366.22(b)(4) require that if a proposed legal guardian is a relative
of the child and (s)he was assessed for placement of the child prior to January 1, 1998,
the assessment for the proposed relative legal guardian must also consider, but not limit
itself to, all the factors specified in WIC 361.3(a). These factors have been incorporated
into the instructions below.




0300-503.20 (Rev. 07/11)                                                      Page 19 of 35
Prospective Caregiver Assessment for: {enter the name(s) of the child(ren)}.

    Social History

    If the recommended plan is adoption/legal guardianship, provide a social history of
    the prospective adoptive parent(s)/legal guardian(s). The social history may
    include, but is not limited to: age, marital status, family composition, education,
    employment, income, identifying information about the applicant’s tribal membership
    or affiliation, if applicable, etc.

    In order to preserve the confidentiality of prospective adoptive parents, use non-
    identifying information when completing this section. The race, color, or national
    origin of the prospective adoptive family shall not be identified in this social history
    unless extraordinary child-specific circumstances warrant consideration of these
    factors in matching the child with this family.

    Results of Criminal History Clearance

    If the recommended plan is adoption/legal guardianship, discuss the results of all
    criminal clearances. Attach the clearances to the report if legal guardianship is the
    identified plan.

    In order to preserve the confidentiality of prospective adoptive parents, present the
    results of clearances in a general fashion that provides the information with enough
    facts to assess child safety, but does not violate the confidentiality of the
    prospective adoptive parent. Do not attach the clearances of prospective adoptive
    parents to the report unless ordered by the court.

    In an instance where the applicant/prospective adoptive parent has not and does
    not want to disclose a criminal history, if any, to his/her spouse, domestic partner or
    co-adoption partner, the information shall not be written in the report but sent in a
    sealed envelope, marked ‘confidential’ and addressed to the Hearing Officer. See
    FYI 07 – 35, Presenting Criminal History to Court, dated 10/26/07, for more detailed
    instructions.

    Results of CWS History Clearance

    If the recommended plan is adoption/legal guardianship, discuss the results of
    CWS/CMS and Child Abuse Clearance Index clearances. If there is a history of
    child welfare services, indicate where and when the services were provided and
    describe in detail the type of allegations involved, the results of the investigation and
    the extent of child protective services involved. Include a statement regarding the
    potential impact of any child welfare history upon the abilities of the prospective
    adoptive parent(s)/legal guardian(s) to care for the child.
    In order to preserve the confidentiality of prospective adoptive parents, present the
    results of clearances in a general fashion that provides the information with enough


0300-503.20 (Rev. 07/11)                                                         Page 20 of 35
    facts to assess child safety, but does not violate the confidentiality of the
    prospective adoptive parent. Do not attach the clearances of prospective adoptive
    parents to the report.

    Motivation for Seeking Adoption/Legal Guardianship

    If the recommended plan is adoption/legal guardianship, discuss in detail the
    motivation for seeking adoption or legal guardianship. In order to preserve the
    confidentiality of prospective adoptive parents, use non-identifying information when
    completing this section.

    Duration and Character of Relationship with Child(ren)

    If the recommended plan is adoption/legal guardianship, discuss in detail the
    relationship of the child to each prospective adoptive parent(s) or legal guardian(s)
    and the duration and character of the relationship. In order to preserve the
    confidentiality of prospective adoptive parents, use non-identifying information when
    completing this section.

    Capability to Meet Child(ren)’s Needs

    If the recommended plan is adoption/legal guardianship, address the ability of each
    prospective adoptive parent(s) or legal guardian(s) to provide a safe and secure
    home; exercise proper care and control of the child; obtain appropriate child care, if
    necessary; protect the child from his or her parents, if applicable; and facilitate
    visitation with parents or other relatives, if applicable. Include information on the
    caregiver’s parenting abilities and experience with children and how the caregiver
    has met the child’s needs, including any special needs. In order to preserve the
    confidentiality of prospective adoptive parents, use non-identifying information when
    completing this section.

    If the recommended plan is TCA, a determination of the applicant’s commitment
    and capability to meet the needs of an Indian child which shall include the
    willingness to learn and incorporate the prevailing social and cultural standards of
    the Indian child’s tribe into family life; and the applicant’s cultural competence of the
    child’s tribe, especially customs, traditions, and laws relevant to the child’s
    development.

    If legal guardianship is the recommendation, address the prospective legal
    guardian’s commitment, willingness, and ability to raise the child through the age of
    18, prepare the child for constructive emancipation to adulthood and be a mentor to
    the child after emancipation.

    If the recommended plan is Kin-GAP guardianship, discuss the length and stability
    of the placement and address the ability of the relative legal guardian(s) to meet the
    child’s needs. Also, indicate that child welfare services are no longer required. See



0300-503.20 (Rev. 07/11)                                                         Page 21 of 35
    Procedural Guide 0100-520.35, Kinship Guardianship Assistance Payment (Kin-
    GAP) Program, for more information.

    Understanding of Responsibilities of Adoption/Legal Guardianship

    If the recommended plan is adoption/legal guardianship, provide a description of the
    prospective adoptive parent’s or legal guardian’s understanding of the legal
    responsibilities and financial obligations of adoption or legal guardianship,
    respectively. In order to preserve the confidentiality of prospective adoptive
    parents, use non-identifying information when completing this section.
    As required by law, include a statement that the relative caregiver has been given
    information regarding the permanency options of guardianship and adoption,
    including the long-term benefits and consequences of each option, prior to
    establishing legal guardianship or pursuing adoption.

    If the recommended plan is TCA, the applicant’s understanding of the TCA process,
    including, but not limited to: the explanation of the agency as a designee, if
    applicable; consultation with the Indian child’s tribe; the written approval process;
    and the applicants understanding of the concept of a TCAO, including, but not
    limited to the modification of the child’s relationship to the adoptive parents and the
    birth parents and Indian custodian.

    Post-adoption Contact Agreement Status

    Indicate whether the prospective adoptive parent(s) have been provided with the
    DCFS 5520, An Introduction to the Post-adoption Contact Agreement which
    provides information on how to prepare a Post-adoption Contact Agreement.
    Address whether the parties are interested in, working on or have completed an
    agreement. Also address if the parties have been referred to the Consortium for
    Children’s Permanency Planning Mediation. See Procedural Guide 0200-513.05,
    Post-adoption Contact Agreements, for further information. Indicate whether post
    adoption sibling contact would be in the adopted child’s best interest and whether
    the prospective adoptive parent(s) indicate a willingness to facilitate post adoptive
    sibling contact.


      NOTE: Per WIC 16002, in order for siblings to be separated/not placed
            together there must be clear and convincing evidence that sibling
            contact is contrary to the safety or well-being of the child.


    Kin-GAP Cases

    If the recommended plan is legal guardianship with a relative who is Kin-GAP
    eligible, indicate that the prospective legal guardian(s) have been provided written
    information (JV 350, SOC 369 and SOC 369A) regarding Kin-GAP. See Procedural


0300-503.20 (Rev. 07/11)                                                       Page 22 of 35
    Guide 0100-520.35, Kinship Guardianship Assistance Payment (Kin-GAP) Program,
    for more comprehensive instructions when considering Kin-GAP eligibility.


      NOTE: The following must be documented in the 366.26 report when the
            recommendation is for Kin GAP:

                1) That being returned home or placed for adoption are not
                   appropriate permanency options for the child;
                2) The child demonstrates a strong attachment to the prospective
                   relative guardian;
                3) The relative guardian has a strong commitment to caring
                   permanently for the child and;
                4) The child who has attained 12 years of age has been consulted
                   regarding the Kinship Guardianship arrangement.


    Understanding of Legal and Financial Rights

    If the recommended plan is adoption/legal guardianship, describe the prospective
    adoptive parent’s/legal guardian’s understanding of the legal and financial rights of
    adoption and legal guardianship, respectively. In Kin-GAP cases, indicate whether
    the prospective relative guardian(s) have been notified of the provisions of and
    responsibilities entailed with Kin-GAP (provision of the JV 350, SOC 369 and SOC
    369A). Discuss whether the prospective adoptive parent(s) have been advised of
    Adoption Assistance Program. In order to preserve the confidentiality of
    prospective adoptive parents, use non-identifying information when completing this
    section.

    As required by law, include a statement that the relative caregiver has been given
    information (via DCFS 5620) regarding the permanency options of guardianship
    and adoption, including the long-term benefits and consequences of each option,
    prior to establishing legal guardianship or pursuing adoption.

    Commitment to Permanent Plan

    If the recommended plan is adoption/legal guardianship, provide a description of the
    prospective adoptive parent’s or legal guardian’s commitment to providing the child
    with a permanent home. Include statements from the prospective adoptive
    parent(s)/legal guardian(s). Record all statements verbatim, whenever possible. In
    order to preserve the confidentiality of prospective adoptive parents, use non-
    identifying information when completing this section.




0300-503.20 (Rev. 07/11)                                                      Page 23 of 35
    Child(ren)’s Statement Concerning Placement and the Prospective Permanent Plan

    Obtain and record a statement from children age four years or older concerning
    their placement and the identified plan, unless the child’s physical, emotional, or
    other condition precludes a meaningful response, and, if so, a description of that
    condition. If the child is 12 years old or older and the identified plan is adoption, the
    child must consent to the adoption. The child’s statement must clearly reflect
    whether or not (s)he consents to the termination of his or her parents’ parental
    rights and his or her adoption. If TCA is recommended, the consent of a child 12
    years old or older is not required but his or her wishes remain important and must
    be taken into consideration.

    Enter the name of the child, date interviewed, and if the interview was conducted in
    person or by telephone. Record all statements verbatim, whenever possible. If the
    child is non-verbal and/or too young to make a statement, enter the child’s name
    followed by “The child is non-verbal.” or “The child is too young to make a
    statement.”

PLANNED PERMANENT LIVING ARRANGEMENT (PPLA) AKA: LONG TERM
FOSTER CARE

A recommendation of PPLA shall only be requested after every effort has been made
to establish legal permanency by reunification, adoption or legal guardianship. This
recommendation must be supported by clearly presented facts that will allow the court
to make the determination that diligent efforts have been made to achieve a more
permanent plan and that PPLA is tentatively the only viable plan at this time. Indicate
what efforts shall be made during the next review period to continue to explore a more
permanent plan.

In addition, a recommendation of non-termination of parental rights must be supported
by clearly presented facts that will allow the court to make the determination that there
is or are compelling reason(s) set forth by WIC 366.26 (c) (A – B) as to why termination
of parental rights would be detrimental to a child.


  NOTE: See Procedural Guide 0080-507.20, Concurrent Planning and the
        Concurrent Planning Assessment (CPA), particularly Attachment 1, for the
        compelling reasons and the diligent efforts that shall be made to assess
        and address the barriers to seeking TPR. The compelling reasons are also
        listed in the Recommendations Guide (see Recommendations Section of
        this Procedural Guide for more information).


Describe the relationship of the child to each caregiver and the duration and character
of the relationship. If appropriate, discuss the results of all criminal, Child Abuse Central
Index (CACI) and CWS/CMS clearances for relative caregiver(s). If there is a history of


0300-503.20 (Rev. 07/11)                                                         Page 24 of 35
child welfare services, describe in detail the type of allegations involved, the results of
the investigation and the extent of child protective services. Include a statement
regarding the potential impact of any child welfare history upon the ability of the
caregiver to care for the child.

Address the ability of the caregiver(s) to: provide a safe and secure home; exercise
proper care and control of the child; obtain appropriate child care, if necessary; protect
the child from his or her parents, if applicable; and facilitate visitation with parents or
other relatives, if applicable. Discuss how the caregiver has met the child’s needs,
including any special needs. Detail the caregiver’s parenting abilities and experience
with children. Provide a brief description of the caregiver’s commitment to providing the
child with a permanent home.

Include statements from the caregiver(s), including his or her reasons for not opting for
a more permanent plan for the child. Enter the name of the caregiver, date interviewed,
who conducted the interview and if the interview was conducted in person or by
telephone. Record all statements verbatim, whenever possible.

If the child is not placed with relatives, discuss in this section, any subsequent efforts
made to identify and contact relatives and/or any update or result of the due diligence
efforts made to locate relatives. See Procedural Guide 0070-548.20, Taking Children
Into Temporary Custody and 0300-508.30, Placements with Relatives: Informing the
Court of Recurring Efforts to Locate Relatives, for more information.

VISITATION

If the identified plan is adoption, discuss the appropriateness of future visitation between
the child and his or her siblings and/or other family members. If appropriate, discuss the
need to have the visitation objectives updated.

For any identified plan, discuss the appropriateness of future visitation between the
child and his or her parents, siblings and/or other family members. Information
discussed in this section shall support the recommended visitation plan. This may
include a discussion of the previous implementation of any court-ordered visitation plan
and compliance, progress and efforts/cooperation by the parents, siblings and other
relatives with the visitation plan and objectives. See Procedural Guide 0400-504.00,
Family Visitation Planning, for more information.


  NOTE: Per WIC 16002, in order for siblings to be separated/not placed together
        there must be clear and convincing evidence that sibling contact is contrary
        to the safety or well-being of the child.




0300-503.20 (Rev. 07/11)                                                         Page 25 of 35
CONTACTS

Attach a copy of the Delivered Service Log showing all contacts (without displaying the
narrative portions of the contacts) since the last status review hearing to the report.

ASSESSMENT/EVALUATION

Summarize the factors that led to the recommended permanent plan, including a
discussion of whether the child is likely to be adopted if parental rights are terminated
and the basis for this conclusion. If TCA is recommended, state why this is an
appropriate permanent plan for the child and the reason(s). Discuss why the identified
plan is in the best interests of the child.

Report the date the parent was advised of the option to participate in adoptive planning
and to voluntarily relinquish the child for an adoption. If the parent was not advised,
specify the reason(s).

If there are serious concerns regarding the ability to approve the identified prospective
adoptive parent’s adoptive home study, clearly document these concerns in this section.
Notify the court how and when these concerns will be addressed and if applicable,
discuss whether or not termination of parental rights would be appropriate taking into
consideration the compelling reasons and/or the child’s specific circumstances.


  NOTE: Incorporate the necessary information written by the APRD CSW in his or
        her respective sections in this report, or other relevant information obtained
        from the assigned APRD CSW or the outside adoption agency social
        worker and/or from the most current CPA attached to the report.


CASE PLAN
Attach a copy of the most current Child Welfare Services Case Plan.

If the child is 14 years or older, (even those children 14 years or older whose parental
rights are being or have been terminated), attach a copy of the current Transitional
Independent Living Plan. If the child cannot benefit from Independent Living Plan
services, (i.e., mentally or physically not able to benefit, etc.), provide the reason why
(s)he would not benefit from these services and report what ILP equivalent services are
being provided, if any. See Procedural Guides 0080-505.10, Youth Development:
Transitional Independent Living Planning (TILP) and 0100-535.30, Youth Development:
Services for Transition Age Youth, for more information.




0300-503.20 (Rev. 07/11)                                                       Page 26 of 35
ATTACHMENTS

Ensure that all listed attachments are in fact attached to the report. If the child is placed
in a group home or is in placement through a foster family agency (FFA), attach a copy
of the last quarterly report.


    NOTE: If an alleged father completed a JV-505 at any time during the life of the
          case, it must be included with the attachments. Ensure that a current
          completed CPA and the HEP are attached and that any confidential
          information, such as those deemed confidential in the body of the report,
          shall also be protected in the attachment(s).

RECOMMENDATION

The Recommendations Guide has been posted on CWS/CMS under: “LA County
Specific” templates. To access the Recommendations Guide, follow the steps listed in
one of the options below:

Option 1:

    While in the ID Tab of the Court Management Section (Purple button), select “+”
     under create a New JV Document then;
    Change the “Document Category” to “County” then;
    Select “Recommendations Guide” to access the form and;
    Select the appropriate recommendations and paste them into the court report.

Option 2:

    While in the Case Management Section (Green button), select “Create A New
     Document” then;
    Select Los Angeles County then;
    Select “Recommendations Guide” to access the form and;
    Select the appropriate recommendations and paste them into the court report.

There may be additional recommendation(s) that need to be included but are not found
on the Recommendations Guide. These recommendations must be manually entered
into the report.

If the identified permanent plan is adoption, manually enter the following
recommendation, as needed:

      “It is respectfully recommended that the minute order reflect the following
      information for each child as noted below:”
            Child’s name (all AKAs and spellings of names)
            Child’s date of birth


0300-503.20 (Rev. 07/11)                                                         Page 27 of 35
When entering the names of the parent(s), ensure that the full correct name(s),
including aliases are entered.

If the identified permanent plan is TCA, recommend that a continued 366.26 be set
within 120 days of the original 366.26 hearing to afford the child’s tribe time to complete
and file the TCAO that includes a description of the modification of the legal relationship
of the birth parents or Indian custodian and the child, and a description of the child’s
legal relationship with the tribe; and for the filing to the court of an addendum to the
continued WIC 366.26 report by DCFS. Note: The plan of TCA cannot be
recommended, selected, facilitated or finalized without the consultation with and
involvement of the child’s tribe. Consent from the Indian parent(s) or custodian is not
required to recommend TCA. See Procedural 0200-515.05, Adoption of Children Under
the Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA), for instructions on completing the addendum to the
continued WIC 366.26 report.

If the recommendation is Kin-GAP guardianship, ensure that the recommendation to
terminate jurisdiction is selected from the Recommendations Guide.

Include a recommendation regarding the parent(s)’s visitation with the child, which
should be consistent with the discussion in the Visitation Section of this Procedural
Guide.

CSW Preparing the 366.26 Court Report Responsibilities

1. Submit the WIC 366.26 report with listed attachments for approval. If the ARA
   signature is necessary, create an additional signature line for the ARA. Refer to
   Attachment I which lists the actions that will require ARA approval.

2. Request on-line approval for the WIC 366.26 report and the Case Plan Update and
   print it. Sign and date the hard copy.

3. Submit the hard copy of the court report and all supporting documents to the
   SCSW. If the report was not approved, take necessary corrective action.

4. When the report is approved, route the report and all attachments (e.g., proof of
   publication, due diligence, listed attachments,) to support staff with the completed
   DCFS 203 for final preparation and delivery to court.

SCSW Responsibilities

1. Review the report and any supporting documents including any SDM tools used.

    a) If not approved, request corrective action on-line and return the packet to the
       CSW.




0300-503.20 (Rev. 07/11)                                                      Page 28 of 35
    b) If approved, sign the report and return the packet to the CSW. If the report
       requires ARA approval such as when recommendation is legal guardianship
       with a non-relative or PPLA, forward the packet to the ARA. Do not approve the
       report on line.

    c) If the ARA approved the report, approve the report on-line and return the packet
       to the CSW.

    d) If the report was not approved by the ARA, take necessary corrective action or,
       if necessary, return the packet to the CSW for corrective action.

ARA Responsibilities

1. Review the report requiring ARA approval and any supporting documents including
   any SDM tools used.

2. If not approved, return the packet to the SCSW for corrective action.

3. If approve, sign and date the report and return the packet to the SCSW.

UNDER CP REDESIGN WHERE ADOPTION IS THE PLAN OR IF THE PLAN
CHANGES FROM ADOPTION TO LEGAL GUARDIANSHIP OR PPLA, IN ADDITION
TO THE RESPONSIBILITIES AND STEPS ABOVE, THE FOLLOWING ADDITIONAL
STEPS OF THE APPROVAL PROCESS ARE ALSO TAKEN:

APRD CSW Responsibilities

1. Prior to or no later than 35 days prior to 366.26 hearing, complete the adoption-
   related sections of the report i.e. the analysis of the likelihood of adoption and
   proposed permanent plan and prospective adoptive parents, and request the APRD
   SCSW’s review and approval. If not approved, do corrective action.

APRD SCSW Responsibilities

1. Review and approve the APRD CSW’s portion of the report. If not approved,
   instruct the APRD CSW to do the appropriate corrective action.

2. Within three days of approving the APRD CSW’s portion, e-mail the DI SCSW
   notifying him or her of the approval. See the note box immediately below for
   instructions if the DI section is approved first.

.26 DI SCSW Responsibilities

1. Review and approve the report submitted by the DI. If not approved, return to DI for
   corrective action.




0300-503.20 (Rev. 07/11)                                                     Page 29 of 35
   2.   Upon receipt of e-mail from APRD CSW indicating approval of the Adoptions
        portion of the report, e-mail the case-carrying CSW and his or her SCSW that the
        report has been completed and is now available for their review. If the case-
        carrying CSW and his or her SCSW indicates concern(s) with the report, confer if
        necessary to resolve the issues raised.

   3. After the case-carrying SCSW e-mails his or her approval of the report, approve the
      report on CWS/CMS and sign the hardcopy for Court submission.


    NOTE: Under CPR, the CSW and SCSW signatory responsibility is no longer
          exclusively the responsibility of the .26 DI and the DI SCSW. Upon approval of
          his or her CSW’s sections of the report, the respective SCSW shall e-mail
          his/her SCSW counterpart that the section of the report submitted by his or her
          respective CSW has been approved. The .26 DI and DI SCSW shall sign the
          court report if the section of the report was approved first. The APRD CSW
          and APRD SCSW shall sign the court report if the DI section of the report was
          approved first. CWS/CMS populates the name of the CSW designated
          primary on CWS/CMS on the signatory line; the CSW and SCSW signing the
          report need to manually delete the pre-populated names and add their own.

             The report shall be submitted to court at least ten judicial days prior to the
             scheduled hearing.


   Case-carrying CSW’s SCSW Responsibilities

   1. Within 3 days of receipt of e-mail from DI SCSW indicating that the report is ready
      for review, e-mail the DI SCSW to indicate satisfaction with the report or the need to
      confer if necessary.


                                      APPROVAL LEVELS

             See Attachment I for a list of situations requiring ARA approval.
       In addition, the chart below identifies legally permanent plans for children.
   Legally Permanent Plans              SCSW                 ARA, RA or Division Chief
Reunification                     Approval required
Adoption with a Relative          Approval required
Kin-Gap/Legal Guardianship        Approval required
with a Relative
Adoption with Non-Relative        Approval required
Legal Guardianship with Non-      Court report and CPA approval is required from the SCSW and
Relative                          Regional ARA and CPA approval is also required from the RA or
                                     Division Chief to accept rationale as “exceptional”, to ensure that all
                                     relatives were considered and that Kin-Gap was fully explored.
                                     Reasons are to be well documented.


   0300-503.20 (Rev. 07/11)                                                                  Page 30 of 35
                    The following is NOT a legally permanent plan.
Prior to making this recommendation, every effort shall be made to achieve one of the
                       acceptable permanent plans listed above.
                                             SCSW, ARA, RA or Division Chief
Planned Permanent Living        Court report and CPA approval is required from the SCSW, Regional
Arrangement (PPLA)              and APRD ARA and CPA approval is also required from the RA or
                                Division Chief to accept rationale as “exceptional” , to ensure that all
(AKA Long Term Foster Care)     relatives were considered and that Kin-GAP was fully explored.
                                       Reasons are to be well documented and case plans are to include
                                       continuing efforts to achieve permanency and stability.



                           OVERVIEW OF STATUTES/REGULATIONS

   Welfare and Institutions Code (WIC) Section 224 sets forth legislative findings and
   declarations and custody proceedings pertaining to an Indian child.

   WIC Sections 360(a) and 11363 state Kin GAP eligibility requirements.

   WIC Section 366.21(I)(6), states in pertinent part that whenever a court orders that a
   hearing pursuant to Section 366.26 shall be held, it shall direct the agency supervising
   the child and the licensed county adoption agency, to prepare an assessment which
   shall include a description of efforts to be made to identify a prospective adoptive parent
   or legal guardian, including, but not limited to, child specific recruitment and listing on an
   adoption exchange.

   WIC Section 366.24(b) states that whenever an assessment is ordered pursuant to
   Section 361.5, 366.21, 366.22, 366.25, or 366.26 for Indian children, the assessment
   shall address the option of tribal customary adoption.

   WIC Section 366.26 sets forth the requirements/guidelines for the hearing terminating
   parental rights or establishing guardianship of children adjudged dependent of the court.
   This includes section 366.26 (c) (A – B) which lists the compelling reasons for not
   ordering termination of parental rights.

   WIC Section 366.26 (c) states that if, following the establishment of a legal
   guardianship, the county welfare department becomes aware of changed circumstances
   that indicate adoption or, for an Indian child, tribal customary adoption, may be an
   appropriate plan for the child, the department shall so notify the court. The court may
   vacate its previous order dismissing dependency jurisdiction over the child and order
   that a hearing be held pursuant to Section 366.26 to determine whether adoption or
   continued legal guardianship is the most appropriate plan for the child.

   WIC (WIC) Section 16002(e), states in pertinent part that if parental rights are
   terminated and the court orders a dependent child to be placed for adoption, the
   licensed county adoption agency or the State Department of Social Services shall take
   steps to facilitate ongoing sibling contact, except in those cases where the court


   0300-503.20 (Rev. 07/11)                                                               Page 31 of 35
determines by clear and convincing evidence that sibling interaction is contrary to the
safety or well-being of the child.

California Rule of Court 1463, states in pertinent part that the court may not terminate
the rights of only one parent under section 366.26 unless that parent is the only
surviving parent, or the rights of the other parent have been terminated or the other
parents has relinquish custody of the child to the welfare department.

All County Letter 10-17, re: Assembly Bill 1325, Chapter 287, Statutes of 2009 Tribal
Customary Adoption: http://www.dss.cahwnet.gov/lettersnotices/entres/getinfo/acl/2010/10-17.pdf


                                            LINKS

California Code                    http://www.leginfo.ca.gov/calaw.html
Division 31 Regulations            http://www.cdss.ca.gov/ord/PG309.htm
Title 22 Regulations               http://www.dss.cahwnet.gov/ord/PG295.htm


                                    RELATED POLICIES

Procedural Guide 0080-505.20, Health and Education Passport (HEP)
Procedural Guide 0080-507.20, Concurrent Planning and the Concurrent Planning
Assessment (CPA)
Procedural Guide 0100-520.35, Kinship Guardianship Assistance Payment (Kin-GAP)
Program
Procedural Guide 0200-513.05, Post-adoption Contact Agreements
Procedural Guide 0200-515.05, Adoption of Children Under the Indian Child Welfare
Act (ICWA)
Procedural Guide 0300-303.07, Non-Disclosure Orders
Procedural Guide 0300-306.05, Notice of Hearing for Juvenile Court Proceedings
Procedural Guide 0300-503.21, Concurrent Planning and Termination of Parental
Rights (TPR) - Related Activities
Procedural Guide 0300-503.25, Removing a Child From the Home of Prospective
Adoptive Parent(s)
Procedural Guide 0300-503.99, Change of Permanent Plan from Legal
Guardianship/Kin GAP to Adoption
Procedural Guide 0300-508.30, Placement with Relatives: Informing the Court of
Recurring Efforts to Locate Relatives
Procedural Guide 0700-500.10, Youth Development: Education
Procedural Guide 0900-523.10, Supplemental Security Income (SSI) For Children With
Disabilities
Procedural Guide 1200-500.05, The Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA)




0300-503.20 (Rev. 07/11)                                                            Page 32 of 35
                            FORM(S) REQUIRED/LOCATION

HARD COPY             DCFS 4380, Declaration of Service or Inability to Ascertain Address

LA Kids:              DCFS 203, Interested Parties Mailing List & Photocopy Request
                      DCFS 5649, Indian Ancestry Questionnaire
                      DCFS 709, Foster Child’s Needs and Case Plan Summary
                      DCFS 4217, Children’s Social Worker’s Report and Order of Court
                      for Removal of Prisoner from County Jail
                      DCFS 4360, Request for Juvenile Court Transportation and Shelter
                      Care (use only if Shelter Care/Transportation Request System link
                      on LA Kids is not working.)
                      DCFS 5520, An Introduction To The Post-Adoption Contact
                      Agreement
                      ICWA-010(A), Indian Child Inquiry Attachment
                      ICWA-020, Parental Notification of Indian Status
                      ICWA-030, Notice of Child Custody Proceeding for Indian Child
                      ICWA-030(A), Attachment to Notice of Child Custody Proceeding
                      for Indian Child
                      JV-350, Guardianship Pamphlet
                      JV-350S, Guardianship Pamphlet - Spanish
                      JV-350C, Guardianship Pamphlet - Chinese
                      JV-350K Guardianship Pamphlet - Korean
                      JV-350V, Guardianship Pamphlet - Vietnamese
                      JV 450, Order for Prisoner’s Appearance at the Hearing Affecting
                      Prisoner’s Parental Rights
                      JV 501, Paternity Finding and Judgment (Juvenile Dependency
                      SOC 369, Agency Relative Guardianship Disclosure (via link to
                      state forms)
                      SOC 369A, Kinship Guardianship Assistance Payment (Kin-GAP)
                      Program Amendment Agreement (via link to state forms)

CWS/CMS:              Case Plan Update
                      Concurrent Planning Assessment
                      Declaration of Due Diligence
                      DCFS 709, Foster Child’s Needs and Case Plan Summary
                      ICWA-010(A), Indian Child Inquiry Attachment (can be generated
                      as a stand-alone document from the Notices Page in the Hearing
                      Notebook)
                      ICWA-020, Parental Notification of Indian Status (can now be
                      generated and printed in the Court Section)
                      ICWA-030, Notice of Child Custody Proceeding for Indian Child
                      (Hearing Notebook and LA County specific templates)
                      JV 300, Notice Of Hearing On Selection Of A Permanent Plan --
                      Juvenile
                      JV 505, Statement Regarding Paternity (Juvenile Dependency)



0300-503.20 (Rev. 07/11)                                                     Page 33 of 35
                      JV 510, Proof of Service
                      WIC 366.26 Hearing Report
                      Transitional Independent Living Plan

SDM                   Structured Decision Making (SDM) Family Strength and Needs
                      Reassessment Tool
                      Structured Decision Making (SDM) Family Reunification
                      Reassessment Tool




0300-503.20 (Rev. 07/11)                                                 Page 34 of 35
                                                                                             Attachment I


 SITUATIONS REQUIRING ARA APPROVAL FOR THE 366.26 HEARING REPORT

1. The child is 59 months or younger, and

        The allegations are physical or sexual abuse, failure-to-thrive, or parental substance abuse and
         the plan is to allow the child to remain in the home; or
        There is a new allegation on an open case and the plan is for the child to remain in the home; or
        The court has ordered the return of the child to the home against the recommendation of our
         Department and at the next hearing our Department is recommending that the child continue to
         remain in the home; or
        The recommendation is changed from suitable placement to home of parent

2. The recommendation is Family Reunification for a case that meets the Fast Track to Permanency
   (FTP) criteria.

3. The placement exceeds 30 days in a temporary/emergency shelter care facility.

4. The child is age six years or younger (i.e., 0-83 months, inclusive) and is placed in congregate care

5. Placing a child younger than 36 months of age in a relative/non-relative extended family member or in
   a foster family home if two or more children under 36 months of age already reside in the household.

6. The placement of more than eight children in the home of a relative or non-relative extended family
   member

7. There is a recommendation for Family Maintenance for at least one child and the CSW is
   recommending Family Reunification or Permanent Plan for one or more other children in the home.
   Leaving children in the home when siblings are detained. A child under the age of five is left in the
   home.

8. Recommendations for continued jurisdiction for youths age 18 who are not in school or a training
   program and/or all youths age 19 or older.

9. Recommendation of FM for all sexual abuse cases.

10. Provision of FM services when family maintenance services have been provided on a voluntary basis
    or under court supervision in the past five years for the same or similar allegations.

11. Extending family maintenance services beyond the initial six months.

12. Extending FM services beyond the 12 months.

13. CPA and Court Report when the permanent plan is for Legal Guardianship with Non-Relative and
    when the permanent plan is Planned Permanent Living Arrangement

14. Decision to remove child (Non-Emergency Situation) from the home of a Prospective Adoptive Parent

15. Report requesting a Continuance




0300-503.20 (Rev. 07/11)                                                                    Page 35 of 35

								
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