New Jersey Revised Statutes § 30:4c-54 - Determination By Court As To Placement.

30:4C-54 Determination by court as to placement.

5.The court shall, within 15 days following receipt of the notice of the initial placement pursuant to a voluntary agreement, determine, based solely upon the petition and other affidavits and written materials submitted to the court, whether or not reasonable efforts have been made to prevent the placement and whether or not the continuation of the child in his home would be contrary to the welfare of the child, and either approve the placement or order the return of the child to his home, except that, lack of reasonable efforts to prevent placement shall not be the sole basis for the court's order of a return of the child to his home.

If the division has documented an exception to the requirement to provide reasonable efforts towards family reunification, the court shall make a finding of whether reasonable efforts are required in accordance with section 25 of P.L.1999, c.53 (C.30:4C-11.3). The child's health, safety and need for permanency shall be of paramount concern to the court when it makes its finding.

The court also may require the submission of supplementary material or schedule a summary hearing if:

a.The court has before it conflicting statements of material fact;

b.The court determines that it is in the best interest of the child; or

c.The child's parents or legal guardian requests the hearing.

The court shall provide written notice to the parties involved in the hearing at least five days prior to the hearing. The court shall provide written notice of the date, time and place of such hearing to the parents or legal guardian of the child, the child or the child's counsel, the child's temporary caretaker, the division, and any other party the court deems appropriate. If the child's caretaker is a resource family parent, preadoptive parent or relative, the caretaker shall receive written notice of, and shall have a right to be heard at, the hearing, but the caretaker shall not be made a party to the hearing solely on the basis of the notice and right to be heard.

L.1977, c.424, s.5; amended 1978, c.125, s.3; 1987, c.252, s.3; 1999, c.53, s.43; 2005, c.169, s.14; 2007, c.228, s.5.

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Last modified: October 11, 2016