Foster Parent Representation
The federal Adoption and Safe Families Act (ASFA) was passed by Congress in 1997. This Act gave foster parents, including pre-adoptive parents and relatives caring for children, the right to be heard in certain court hearings about the foster child in their home.
To receive federal foster care funds, juvenile courts in every state must give foster parents “notice of, and opportunity to be heard in, any review or hearing to be held with respect to the child.”
This means that the child’s current foster parents must be given the chance to let the child’s judge know information they believe will help the court in making decisions about the child.
By passing this section of the federal law, Congress recognized that foster parents and relatives caring for children often have valuable information that will help the court in making its decisions.
Foster parents are also eligible to file for De Facto Parent status and/or Prospective Adoptive Parent status which may help to elevate their position in a juvenile court proceeding. For more information on either of these areas, please visit our links to De Facto Parent status and/or Prospective Adoptive Parent status.
For more on this topic, please visit the following article: http://www.sjgov.org/hsa/childrens_services/foster_care/pdf/court%20participation%20by%20foster%20parents.pdf