Code of Virginia

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Code of Virginia
Title 63.2. Welfare (Social Services)
Chapter 9. Foster Care
8/25/2019

§ 63.2-902. Agreements with persons taking children; dispute resolution; appeals.

A. Every local board and licensed child-placing agency shall, with respect to each child placed by it in a foster home or children's residential facility, enter into a written agreement contained in an approved foster care policy with the head of such home or facility, which agreement shall provide that the authorized representatives of the local board or agency shall have access at all times to such child and to the home or facility, and that the head of the home or facility will release custody of the child so placed to the authorized representatives of the local board or agency whenever, in the opinion of the local board or agency, or in the opinion of the Commissioner, it is in the best interests of the child.

B. Local boards and licensed child-placing agencies shall implement and publicize a dispute resolution process through which a foster parent may contest an alleged violation of the regulations governing the collaboration, communication, access, and transparency between the local boards and licensed child-placing agencies and foster parents. Prior to filing a complaint through such dispute resolution process, the foster parent shall contact the family services specialist assigned to the foster home, provide a detailed description of the conduct constituting the alleged violation of the regulations governing collaboration, communication, access, and transparency between the local boards and licensed child-placing agencies and foster parents, and attempt to resolve the dispute. Family services specialists shall respond within five business days and explain any corrective action to be taken in response to the foster parent's complaint. If the foster parent and family services specialist are unable to resolve the complaint informally, the foster parent may file a written complaint through the dispute resolution process with the local board's foster care supervisor or assigned designee. The complaint shall include a detailed description of the conduct constituting the alleged violation of the regulations governing collaboration, communication, access, and transparency between the local boards and licensed child-placing agencies and foster parents, along with any other information required by Department regulation. The foster care supervisor or assigned designee shall respond to the complaint in writing within five business days, setting forth all findings regarding the alleged violation and any corrective action to be taken.

If the foster parent disagrees with the findings or corrective actions proposed by the foster care supervisor or assigned designee, the foster parent may appeal the decision to the local director by filing a written notice of appeal. The notice of appeal shall include a detailed description of the conduct constituting the alleged violation of the regulations governing collaboration, communication, access, and transparency between the local boards and licensed child-placing agencies and foster parents, a copy of the foster care supervisor or assigned designee's findings and recommendations, and any other information required by Department regulation. The local director shall hold a meeting between all parties within seven business days to gather any information necessary to determine the validity of the alleged violation of the regulations governing collaboration, communication, access, and transparency between the local boards and licensed child-placing agencies and foster parents and the appropriateness of any recommendations for corrective action made by the family services specialist and foster care supervisor or assigned designee. A summary of the meeting shall be documented in writing by the family services specialist after approval by the foster care supervisor or assigned designee. Following such meeting and documentation, the local director shall issue to all parties written findings and, when applicable, recommendations for corrective action.

Code 1950, § 63-243; 1968, c. 578, § 63.1-206; 2002, c. 747; 2008, cc. 241, 308; 2019, c. 336.

The chapters of the acts of assembly referenced in the historical citation at the end of this section may not constitute a comprehensive list of such chapters and may exclude chapters whose provisions have expired.