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      CHC 1213     


Art. 1213. Continuing duties of the department; home study report

            A. After an interlocutory decree has been entered, the department shall maintain contact with the proposed adoptive home directly or through another agency in accordance with Paragraph D of this Article.

            B. The licensed private adoption placing agency, or the department for children in department custody, maintains responsibility for the safety and welfare of the child. The department is responsible for submission of a confidential court report that ensures the accuracy and thoroughness of the resulting reports. The department shall adopt, promulgate, and enforce such rules and regulations as are necessary and appropriate to implement this authorization in accordance with the Administrative Procedure Act.

            C. A second confidential report must be presented to the court preceding the hearing on the final decree of agency adoption. The findings of this report shall be based upon the same considerations as prescribed in Article 1207 and shall disclose any changed conditions and all new pertinent information.

            D. Prior to the final decree of the adoption, the licensed private adoption placing agency, or the department, if the child is in custody of the department, shall ensure that all of the prerequisites for adoption that are listed in this Paragraph are completed. The licensed private adoption agency or the department shall complete the list of prerequisites by utilizing a social worker in the employ of a licensed adoption agency, licensed social worker, licensed professional counselor, licensed psychologist, medical psychologist, licensed psychiatrist, or licensed marriage and family therapist; or, if the child is in the custody of the department, by a department employee or designee. The prerequisites that must be completed are all of the following:

            (1) Conduct an initial in-home, in-person visit with the child and one adoptive parent within seven calendar days of the child's placement. The next in-home, in-person visit shall occur within thirty days of the initial in-home, in-person visit.

            (2) Conduct an in-home visit with one adoptive parent at least once every month after the visits provided for in Subparagraph (1) of this Paragraph are completed. The child shall be observed in the home during the monthly visit.

            (3) Conduct a private visit without the presence of the adoptive parents with each child age one year and above every other month with at least a segment of the visit occurring in the adoptive home.

            (4) Conduct an in-home visit with both adoptive parents and child within thirty days prior to the final decree.

            (5) Prepare a report that documents information obtained from the visits conducted pursuant to Subparagraphs (1) through (4) of this Paragraph which shall contain all of the following:

            (a) The date and time of the visit.

            (b) The individuals present at the time of the visit.

            (c) The location of the visit.

            (d) The duration of the visit.

            (e) An assessment of adjustment of both the child and the adoptive parent.

            (f) An assessment of the attachment and bonding between the child and the adoptive parent.

            (g) An assessment of the child's health.

            (h) A description of changes since last contact.

            (i) A summary of the visit.

            (j) The signature of a person conducting the visit or phone contact.

            (6) Conduct at least three of the visits prior to adoption finalization including the visit prior to the final decree which shall include both adoptive parents and all other members of the household.

            (7) Report observations made during the visits which shall be used in making recommendations for the finalization of the adoption. If problems are identified, the family shall be assisted directly and referred to a resource to address the concerns.

            (8) The child and adoptive parent shall be provided assistance, consultation, and emotional support with situations and problems encountered in permanent placement through finalization.

            (9) The adoptive family shall be provided with access to twenty-four hour crisis intervention services through finalization.

            (10) A confidential report concerning requirements set forth in Subparagraphs (1) through (9) of this Paragraph must be presented to the department upon completion and to the court prior to the hearing on the final decree of agency adoption.

            Acts 1991, No. 235, §12, eff. Jan. 1, 1992; Acts 1999, No. 1062, §4, eff. Jan. 1, 2000; Acts 2021, No. 6, §1.

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