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Virginia Administrative Code
Title 22. Social Services
Agency 40. Department of Social Services
Chapter 705. Child Protective Services
4/9/2020

22VAC40-705-80. Family Assessment and Investigation Contacts.

A. During the course of the family assessment, the child protective services worker shall document in writing in the state automated system the following contacts and observations. When any of these contacts or observations is not made, the child protective services worker shall document in writing why the specific contact or observation was not made.

1. The child protective services worker shall conduct a face-to-face interview with and observe the alleged victim child within the determined response time.

2. The child protective services worker shall conduct a face-to-face interview with and observe all minor siblings residing in the home.

3. The child protective services worker shall conduct a face-to-face interview with and observe all other children residing in the home with parental permission.

4. The child protective services worker shall conduct a face-to-face interview with the alleged victim child's parents or guardians or any caretaker named in the report.

5. The child protective services worker shall observe the family environment, contact pertinent collaterals, and review pertinent records in consultation with the family.

B. During the course of the investigation, the child protective services worker shall document in writing in the state automated system the following contacts and observations. When any of these contacts or observations is not made, the child protective services worker shall document in writing why the specific contact or observation was not made.

1. The child protective services worker shall conduct a face-to-face interview with and observation of the alleged victim child within the determined response time. All interviews with alleged victim children must be electronically recorded except when the child protective services worker determines that:

a. The child's safety may be endangered by electronically recording his statement;

b. The age or developmental capacity of the child makes electronic recording impractical;

c. The child refuses to participate in the interview if electronic recording occurs;

d. In the context of a team investigation with law-enforcement personnel, the team or team leader determines that electronic recording is not appropriate; or

e. The victim provided new information as part of a family assessment and it would be detrimental to reinterview the victim and the child protective services worker provides a detailed narrative of the interview in the investigation record.

In the case of an interview conducted with a nonverbal child where none of the exceptions in this subdivision apply, it is appropriate to electronically record the questions being asked by the child protective services worker and to describe, either verbally or in writing, the child's responses. A child protective services worker shall document in detail in the record and discuss with supervisory personnel the basis for a decision not to electronically record an interview with the alleged victim child.

A child protective services finding may be based on the written narrative of the child protective services worker in cases where an electronic recording is unavailable due to equipment failure or the exceptions in this subdivision 1.

2. The child protective services worker shall conduct a face-to-face interview and observe all minor siblings residing in the home.

3. The child protective services worker shall conduct a face-to-face interview with and observe all other children residing in the home with parental permission.

4. The child protective services worker shall conduct a face-to-face interview with the alleged abuser or neglector.

a. The child protective services worker shall inform the alleged abuser or neglector of his right to electronically record any communication pursuant to § 63.2-1516 of the Code of Virginia.

b. If requested by the alleged abuser or neglector, the local department shall provide the necessary equipment in order to electronically record the interview and retain a copy of the electronic recording.

5. The child protective services worker shall conduct a face-to-face interview with the alleged victim child's parents or guardians.

6. The child protective services worker shall observe the environment where the alleged victim child lives. This requirement may be waived in complaints or reports of child abuse and neglect that took place in state licensed and religiously exempted child day centers, regulated and unregulated family day homes, private and public schools, group residential facilities, hospitals, or institutions where the alleged abuser or neglector is an employee or volunteer at such facility.

7. The child protective services worker shall observe the site where the alleged incident took place.

8. The child protective services worker shall conduct interviews with collaterals who have pertinent information relevant to the investigation and the safety of the child.

C. Pursuant to §§ 63.2-1505 and 63.2-1506 of the Code of Virginia, local departments may obtain and consider statewide criminal history record information from the Central Criminal Records Exchange and shall obtain and consider results of a search of the Central Registry on any individual who is the subject of a child abuse and neglect investigation or family assessment where there is evidence of child abuse or neglect and the local department is evaluating the safety of the home and whether removal is necessary to ensure the child's safety. The local department may also obtain a criminal record check and a Central Registry check on all adult household members residing in the home of the alleged abuser or neglector and where the child visits. Pursuant to § 19.2-389 of the Code of Virginia, local departments are authorized to receive criminal history information on the person who is the subject of the investigation as well as other adult members of the household for the purposes in § 63.2-1505 of the Code of Virginia. The results of the criminal record history search may be admitted into evidence if a child abuse or neglect petition is filed in connection with the child's removal. Local departments are prohibited from dissemination of this information except as authorized by the Code of Virginia.

D. Pursuant to §§ 63.2-1505 and 63.2-1506 of the Code of Virginia, local departments must determine whether the subject of an investigation or family assessment has resided in another state within the last five years, and, if he has resided in another state, shall request a search of the child abuse and neglect registry or equivalent registry maintained by such state.

§ 63.2-217 of the Code of Virginia.

Historical Notes

Derived from Volume 13, Issue 25, eff. January 1, 1998; amended, Virginia Register Volume 19, Issue 06, eff. January 1, 2003; Volume 25, Issue 11, eff. March 4, 2009; Volume 33, Issue 19, eff. July 1, 2017; Volume 36, Issue 02, eff. October 17, 2019.

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