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      CHC 683     

  

Art. 683.  Disposition; generally

A.  The court shall impose the least restrictive disposition of the alternatives enumerated in Article 681 which the court finds is consistent with the circumstances of the case, the health and safety of the child, and the best interest of society.

B.  The court shall place the child in the custody of a relative unless the court has made a specific finding that such placement is not in the best interest of the child.  The court shall give specific written reasons for its findings, which shall be made a part of the record of the proceeding.

C.  If the court commits a child to a private institution or agency, it shall select one that has been licensed under state law, if licensure is required by law for such an institution or agency.  When no institution, social agency, or association so licensed for care or placement of children is available to the court, the court may commit the child to some other institution, social agency, or association which in the court's judgment is suitable for such child.

D.  In committing a child to the custody of an individual or a private agency or institution, the court shall, whenever practicable, select a person, agency, or institution of the same religious affiliation as the child or his parents.

E.  A child shall not be committed to a public or private mental institution or institution for persons with mental illness unless the court finds, based on psychological or psychiatric evaluation, that the child has a mental disorder, other than an intellectual disability, which has a substantial adverse effect on his ability to function and requires care and treatment in an institution.  When the child is in the custody of the state of Louisiana, this finding shall not be made without the representation of the child by an attorney appointed from the Mental Health Advocacy Service, unless such attorneys are unavailable as determined by the director or the child retains private counsel who shall represent only the interest of the child.  The Mental Health Advocacy Service's attorney so appointed shall continue to represent the child in any proceeding relating to admission, change of status, or discharge from the mental hospital or psychiatric unit.  Upon modification of the disposition to a placement other than a mental hospital or psychiatric unit, the Mental Health Advocacy Service's attorney shall be relieved of representation of the child.

F.  A child shall not be committed to a public or private institution for persons with intellectual disabilities unless the court finds, based on psychological or psychiatric evaluation, that the child has an intellectual disability and such condition has a substantial adverse effect on his ability to function and requires care and treatment in an institution.

Acts 1991, No. 235, §6, eff. Jan. 1, 1992; Acts 1999, No. 449, §1, eff. July 1, 1999; Acts 1999, No. 770, §1; Acts 1999, No. 1317, §2; Acts 2014, No. 811, §33, eff. June 23, 2014.



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