New Jersey Revised Statutes § 30:4c-61.1 - Proposal To Return Child Home.

30:4C-61.1 Proposal to return child home.

8. a. If the division proposes to return a child home, although the return home is either prohibited by the placement plan approved by the court or expressly contingent upon certain conditions in the placement plan that have not been met, the division shall promptly notify the board and the court in writing.

b.The board shall conduct a special review within 15 days of receipt of the notice provided pursuant to subsection a. or f. of this section to consider and evaluate the reasons for the proposed action and determine whether the action ensures the safety and serves the best interests of the child. The board shall provide written notice of the special review pursuant to section 10 of P.L.1977, c.424 (C.30:4C-59), except that the 15-day advance notice requirement is waived. The board shall submit its report to the court pursuant to section 11 of P.L.1977, c.424 (C.30:4C-60), except that the board shall submit the report within five days of completion of the special review.

c.The court shall review the board's recommendations within 10 days and issue an order within five days unless a summary hearing is scheduled concerning the child's placement pursuant to section 12 of P.L.1977, c.424 (C.30:4C-61), except that if a party entitled to participate in the proceeding requests a hearing, the court shall hold a summary hearing within 15 days of receipt of the board's report unless the court determines that the request for the hearing is frivolous. The court shall issue its order within five days of the hearing.

d.The division shall not return the child home unless the court approves the division's proposed action and orders the return home of the child.

e.Notwithstanding the provisions of this section to the contrary, in an emergency situation, the court may waive the special review provisions of this section and approve the return home, upon the request of the division to do so. The request of the division for a court waiver of the special review provisions shall be accompanied by a written statement from the division declaring and finding that the out-of-home placement has been disrupted, that no appropriate alternative placement for the child can be found in the home of a relative, a resource family home, group home, shelter, residential care facility or other setting following the change in placement, and that the return home will not endanger the health, safety or welfare of the child. The written statement submitted with a request shall also outline the specific reasons for the findings made. The division shall conduct an on-site visit of the home of a child when in an emergency situation the division plans to request of the court a waiver of the special review provisions. A report of the on-site visit shall be included with the request.

If the court approves the division's request, the division shall promptly notify the board of the court's approval of the request. The board shall conduct a review of the change in the placement plan within 15 days of the date the child is returned home. The division shall conduct a minimum of two on-site visits to the home of a child returned there in an emergency situation within the first 10 days of the return to ascertain the continued health, safety and welfare of the child. The court, upon granting a request for a waiver, may require additional on-site visits. A detailed written report of each on-site visit to the home of a child returned in an emergency situation shall promptly be submitted to the court and to the child placement review board.

Notwithstanding any other provisions of law to the contrary, the court shall retain jurisdiction over the placement of the child after a child has been returned home in an emergency situation for up to six months unless there is a subsequent court hearing or court order.

In any case where, following a court order for the implementation of a placement plan, the board determines upon re-review of the case that there has been insufficient effort on the part of the division or any other parties toward implementation of the court ordered plan, the board may petition the court for an order to show cause as to why the plan is not being implemented as ordered.

f.If, subsequent to the review and approval of a plan by the court, the division proposes to change the long-term goal in the plan or otherwise substantially modify the plan, it shall notify the court and the board in writing, within five days. The board shall schedule review of the modification. The division shall continue to implement the current court ordered plan until the court orders a modified or new plan.

g.Nothing in this section is intended to limit the court's authority to exercise its regular remedies for enforcement of an order.

L.1984, c.85, s.8; amended 1987, c.252, s.10; 1999, c.53, s.49; 2004, c.130, s.90.

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Last modified: October 11, 2016