Article 8. Dependent Children--commencement of Proceedings - California Welfare and Institutions Code Section 328

328.  Whenever the social worker has cause to believe that there was
or is within the county, or residing therein, a person described in
Section 300, the social worker shall immediately make any
investigation he or she deems necessary to determine whether child
welfare services should be offered to the family and whether
proceedings in the juvenile court should be commenced. If the social
worker determines that it is appropriate to offer child welfare
services to the family, the social worker shall make a referral to
these services pursuant to Chapter 5 (commencing with Section 16500)
of Part 4 of Division 9. No inference regarding the credibility of
the allegations or the need for child welfare services shall be drawn
from the mere existence of a child custody or visitation dispute.
   However, this section does not require an investigation by the
social worker with respect to a child delivered or referred to any
agency pursuant to Section 307.5.
   The social worker shall interview any child four years of age or
older who is a subject of an investigation, and who is in juvenile
hall or other custodial facility, or has been removed to a foster
home, to ascertain the child's view of the home environment. If
proceedings are commenced, the social worker shall include the
substance of the interview in any written report submitted at an
adjudicatory hearing, or if no report is then received in evidence,
the social worker shall include the substance of the interview in the
social study required by Section 358. A referral based on
allegations of child abuse from the family court pursuant to Section
3027 of the Family Code shall be investigated to the same extent as
any other child abuse allegation.

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Last modified: February 16, 2015