How to Adopt a Child in California ADOPT-050 (13 MB)
This guide is a compilation of many state and national programs that have been developed and designed to promote permanency for foster care children. Many of the program descriptions and resources found in the guide address the specific challenges to permanency that local courts have identified.
The guide has been updated to include many state and national promising practices and model programs that courts and agencies have used successfully to promote permanency for children, as well as to address identified obstacles to permanency. Many of these programs are collaborative and involve local courts, public and private agencies, CASA, as well as other service providers. The guide has been reorganized to highlight specific themes and programs and to provide an easy reference for each local court system.
NOTE: The supplement is over 400 pages, so if you would prefer printing only a particular section, please use the Table of Contents below to find and print only the area in which you are interested. To receive a hardcopy please contact CFCC.
We hope you will use this guide to:
Click Here to continue to the child support main page.
What's Happening in Court? An Activity Book for Children Who Are Going to Court in California, available in English and Spanish. This book is for children coming to court — whether they are witnesses, visitors, or involved in a case. It introduces children to the court processes in which they are or could be involved, the people who work in the judicial system, and the vocabulary that surrounds judicial proceedings. It is meant to be used as a teaching tool that may foster conversations between children and adults about the court system, and a game book that gives children who are in court something to do while they wait.
What's Happening in Court? - Interactive | PDF
¿Qué Sucede en la Corte? - Interactivo | PDF
Orientation to Family Court Mediation and Child Custody Recommending Counseling
Mediation and child custody recommending counseling is a process in which a neutral, specially trained professional will listen to the parents concerns and help them develop a parenting plan that meets the needs of their family in the event of a divorce or when two parents choose to live apart. This video describes the mediation and child custody recommending counseling court process, provides helpful information about parenting plans, and offers tips on how parents can reduce conflict and help their children adjust to the changes happening in their family.
Court for Kids Videos
These videos developed for children, by Court for Kids, a program of the Marin County Superior Court, explain the purpose of court, what to expect, and who does what in the courtroom.
|The Truth About Court
The Truth About Court (Spanish)
|Who's Who in the Courtroom
Who's Who in the Courtroom (Spanish)
|How Court Affects You and Me |
How Court Affects You and Me (Spanish)
Applying Collaborative Justice Court Principles and Practices Faculty Guide (228 pages)
For size reasons, publication comes in two separate PDF files.
For a companion DVD, please contact: Nancy Taylor, or Bonnie Pollard at, email@example.com
Applying Collaborative Justice Court Principles and Practices Faculty Guide, pages 1-114
Applying Collaborative Justice Court Principles and Practices Faculty Guide, pages 115-228
Collaborative Justice Courts: Resource Workbook (908 pages)
For a companion DVD, please contact: Nancy Taylor, or Bonnie Pollard at
Table of Contents and Preface (pp. 1-5)
Part One (pp. 6-21)
General (pp. 22-100 and pp. 101-187)
A. Drugs (pp. 188-300 and pp. 301-410 )
B. DUI (pp. 411-459)
C. Campus (pp. 460-461)
D. Mental Health (pp. 462-489 and pp. 490-611 )
E. Homeless (pp. 612-644)
F. Community (pp. 645-656)
G. Domestic Violence (pp. 657-702)
H. Juvenile Drug (pp. 703-804)
I. Peer/Teen (pp. 805-862)
Family Dependency (pp. 863-908
Elder Abuse Pocket Reference for Judges
Transferring Collaborative Justice Principles (12/2004)
A recent study examines the potential to apply specialized "problem-solving court" principles and practices more broadly throughout state court systems. Based on focus groups and interviews with 35 judges in California and New York, the study assesses which problem-solving court practices are transferable to general court calendars, the major barriers to transferability and how problem-solving methods may be more widely disseminated among judges and judicial leaders.
Court News Article
Click here to continue to the California Collaborative Justice Courts main page for additional information.
California Drug Courts: A Methodology for Determining Costs and Avoided Costs (05/23/2006)
The study found that
California's Collaborative Justice Courts: Building a Problem-Solving Judiciary
This study describes the development of the various collaborative courts in California since their inception in the 1980's.
Center for Court Innovation: Collaborative Justice in Conventional Courts: Opportunities and BarriersCenter for Court Innovation: Collaborative Justice in Conventional Courts: Stakeholder Perspectives in California
Click here to continue to the California Collaborative Justice Courts main page for additional information.
See Juvenile Dependency below.
AOC Literature Review: Mental Health Courts (April 2012)
This is an overview of the literature on mental health diversion programs and mental health courts.
Balanced and Restorative Justice: An Information Manual for California (2006)
This manual catalogs balanced and restorative justice practices and model programs being used in California and around the country. It provides contact information for practitioners and descriptions of practices being followed in local communities. The manual is a resource for the courts, and it encourages judges and community stakeholders to develop collaborative partnerships that can improve outcomes for youth, victims, and communities affected by crime.
California Probation Services Survey (2006)
This study quantifies the array of adult and juvenile probation services available across counties, tells how those services are funded, describes the functions provided by probation staff, and details the amount of probation staff time. The study makes several findings that build on the work of the Probation Services Task Force and that will inform how the task force recommendations are implemented.
Community Justice: What's in It for You? (2004)
This pamphlet provides a brief description of the benefits that community justice programs provide to the various criminal justice stakeholders and how to apply them in your community.
Defining Recidivism in Juvenile Justice (April 2012)
This is an overview of common definitions of recidivism and the challenges of not having one standardized definition.
Developing Effective Practices in Juvenile Delinquency Caseflow Management (2006)
Based on a previous analysis of caseflow management and the processing of cases in criminal and family courts, the Administrative Office of the Courts, Center for Families, Children & the Courts completed a survey of current caseflow management techniques in juvenile delinquency courts. It identifies the major caseflow management issues facing California juvenile delinquency judges, attorneys, probation officers, court administrators, and court staff and provides examples of practices in use in California courts.
Effective Representation of Children in Juvenile Delinquency Court (2004)
This brochure provides juvenile court defense attorneys with both guidance on fulfilling the requirements of rule 5.663 of the California Rules of Court and suggestions for effective advocacy beyond what is mandated by law.
Practice and the Juvenile Delinquency Court: Integrating Justice Practices
This briefing provides an overview of the application of evidence-based practice (EBP) tools and programs in delinquency court, including a discussion of the how the roles of judicial officers, prosecutors, defense, and probation intersect with the EBP in the courtroom.
Family-Based Treatment Models - Effective Practices for Treating Youth Who Have Antisocial and Delinquent Behaviors (April 2009)
A summary of four successful evidence-based family treatment models designed to serve delinquent and substance-abusing youth.
How Practices and Programs Become Evidence Based: A Review of Juvenile Justice Research (February 2012)
This briefing describes what "evidence based" means and the process by which a practice or program becomes a best practice or evidence based. The briefing also details the principles of effective intervention, the principles that must be adhered to in order for practices and programs to be effective.
Trafficking Cases in California’s Courts: Successful Practices in the Emerging
Field of Human Trafficking (December 2012)
This briefing discusses the definition and scope of human trafficking, risk factors for becoming a trafficking victim, the dynamics of how perpetrators maintain trafficking victims, and how trafficking cases present themselves in courtrooms.
Information for Victims: Your Rights and Role in the Juvenile Court Process (2006)
This brochure provides basic information to help victims understand the juvenile court process and exercise their rights to information and assistance.
Juvenile Delinquency Court Assessment (2008)
The Juvenile Delinquency Court Assessment was a comprehensive research study of the California delinquency court system based on surveys and focus groups conducted with delinquency court professionals and court users.
Delinquency Court Performance Measurement as an Evidence-Based Practice (December
This briefing provides a description of how delinquency court performance measures can inform system evaluation, including an overview of how performance measures can be used to evaluate the impact of evidence-based practices on court-related outcomes.
Juvenile Delinquency Flow Chart (2010)
This flow chart outlines how a delinquency case moves through the court system.
Probation Services Task Force: Final Report (June 2003)
This report contains the findings and recommendations of the Probation Services Task Force, an 18-member body formed in August 2000 to undertake a comprehensive examination of probation in California. This report details the scope of the task force's examination, summarizes input from stakeholders around the state, makes recommendations focused on enhancing probation in California, and lays out a research agenda for future study.
Restitution Basics for Victims of Crimes by Juveniles (June 2012)
An overview of restitution and step by step instruction on how to collect money victims are owed as a result of a juvenile offense.
and Assessments Used in the Juvenile Justice System - Evaluating Risks
and Needs of Youth in the Juvenile Justice System (February 2011)
An overview of screening and assessment instruments, including a summary of issues related to instrument validation, selection, and administration.
Screenings and Assessments Used in the Juvenile Justice System - Juvenile Mental Health Screenings and Assessments (February 2011)
An overview of screening and assessment instruments used to detect mental health problems in juveniles entering the delinquency system.
Screenings and Assessments Used in the Juvenile Justice System - Juvenile Risk and Needs Screenings and Assessments (December 2011)
An overview of risk and needs instruments used in California’s juvenile justice system.
and Assessments Used in the Juvenile Justice System: Tools for Assessing Sexual
The briefing provides an overview of the prevalence of juvenile sexual offending, recidivism rates, and recent changes to state and federal legislation that apply to juveniles who have committed sexual offenses.
Truancy and School Discipline: An Overview of the Literature and Statistics (November 2012)
A resource for California courts working with their justice partners and other stakeholders to develop collaborative solutions to truancy and school discipline issues in their communities.
Victim Offender Reconciliation Programs Report (2000)
This report reviews six programs in California. It includes contact information for programs throughout California and resources such as publications, videos, organizations, and training programs.
Juvenile Delinquency Court Orientation Video
This 13-minute video helps youth, their parents, and victims of juvenile crime to understand delinquency court. The video walks the viewer through the common types of juvenile hearings and explains what to expect during the course of a typical delinquency court case. It is appropriate for delinquency court waiting rooms, juvenile halls, and attorney or probation offices. The video is in English; a Spanish version will be produced but is not yet available. In addition to being available online for the public here and at the California Courts Online Self-Help Center, the video can be requested on a DVD by California courts and their justice partners. To order a copy, contact Cindy Chen.
Frequently Asked Questions About Being a Child's Educational Representative The brochure answers question that a person might have about his/her responsibilities as an educational representative appointed by the juvenile court to act on the child's behalf in that capacity.
Caregivers and the Courts: A Primer on Juvenile Dependency Proceedings for California Foster Parents and Relative Caregivers. English | Spanish
Every Child Every Hearing
Transitioning a child into adulthood requires constant attention to all aspects of the child, including the child's physical and mental health, social and cognitive development, and education. The Every Child Every Hearing booklet will assist the court and other interested persons with our shared responsibility of meeting the needs of every child and assisting their transition into adulthood. It offers key questions that must be asked and followed up on for every child to ensure their daily well-being and long-term development.
Emancipation Pamphlet MC-301
Juvenile Court Information for Parents JV-050 (Dependency)
Special Education Pamphlet
Information about special educational services, mandated by certain federal and state laws meant to help eligible children.
English | Spanish
The Dependency Court: How It Works JV-055
Voices From Within: Experiences of California Court Employees With the Foster Care System
This booklet highlights the experiences, both good and bad, of people working in the courts who have been there and now lead successful lives, as well as those of foster parents and others who have a connection to the foster care system. The publication is being shared with the courts and juvenile court policymakers, as well as with youth who are currently in California's foster care system.
Dual-Status Children: Protocols for Implementing Assembly Bill 129 – A Report to the California Legislature (2007)
Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (FASD) Fact Sheet (2011)
Implementation Guide to Juvenile Dependency Court Performance Measures (January 2009)
Native American Statistical Abstract: Violence and Victimization September 2011
Native American Communities Justice Project:
Beginning the Dialogue: Domestic Violence, Sexual Assault, Stalking, & Teen-Dating Violence
Preparing Court-Based Child Custody Mediation Services for the Future (Report 12) (2000).
Statistical Profiles from Two Statewide Studies, Report 6 (1996)
Visitation with Children: A Follow-up of Court Mediation Clients,Report 5 (1994).
Mediated Agreements on Child Custody and Visitation, Report 4(1994).
Client Evaluations of Mediation Services: The Impact of Case Characteristics and Mediation Services Models, Report 3 (1994).
Client Evaluations of Mediation Services: Perspectives of Mothers and Fathers, Report 2. (1994).
Main report not available.
Overview: California Family Court Services Mediation 1991: Families, Cases, and Client Feedback (Report 1) (1992).
Supervised Visitation - An Annotated Bibliography (17 MB) (2000)
Legislative Report 1: California's Access to Visitation Grant Program for Enhancing Responsibility and Opportunity for Nonresidential Parents-The First Five Years: Report to the Legislature (March 2002)
The first published report to the Legislature that provided an overview of the grant program and its accomplishments. Although no recommendations are made in the report, the following actions to improve parents access to and visitation with their children were highlighted as deserving the Legislature's consideration: (1) mandatory training and education for SV providers; (2) expansion of A/V to non-existing counties; (3) recognition of A/V grant-related services as an essential court-based service; and (4) addressing the inadequacy of funding.
Legislative Report 2: A Report to the California Legislature: California's Access to Visitation Grant Program for Enhancing Responsibility and Opportunity for Nonresidential Parents Fiscal Year 2001-2002 and 2002-2003 (February 28, 2003)
Provides information on overall program administration, review and selection processes, and reporting requirements. Although no specific recommendations are made in the report, the report highlights one major challenge—the need to identify adequate, stable funding resources for programs to meet the increasing demands of the courts and parents struggling with access to visitation issues.
Legislative Report 3: California's Access to Visitation Grant Program: Fiscal Year 2002-2003 and 2003-2004 (March 2004)
Provides the state Legislature with details on the grant programs, the scope of these programs’ services, and the development and implementation of the new state Access to Visitation Grant Program Data Collection and Reporting System, which took effect October 1, 2003. Although no formal recommendations are made in the report, it identifies a major challenge that warrants the Legislature’s consideration—maintaining and expanding services despite the impediment of inadequate funding. It also identified three next steps for the grant program: (1) conduct a statewide needs assessment; (2) evaluate the data collection system that was created; and (3) identify effective models of practice.
Legislative Report 4: California's Access to Visitation Grant Program: Fiscal Years 2003-2004 and 2004-2005 (March 2005)
Provides an overview on the grant-related achievements supported and administered by the courts and their collaborative, community-based subcontractors. In addition, it highlights program service accomplishments and general provisions of service delivery.
Legislative Report 5: California's Access to Visitation Grant Program: Fiscal Years 2004-2005 and 2005-2006 (March 2006)
Provides general information on the programs funded for the fiscal year. To enhance court and community outreach while also reinforcing the goals of information sharing and maximal use of program resources to meet the needs of the courts and families receiving grant-funded services, the grant program proposes to spend fiscal years 2005–2006 and 2006–2007 focused on the following goals and activities: (1) providing technical assistance and offering training and education to courts statewide; (2) using the research findings from the programs’ data collection and reporting system to create a profile of the demographic population characteristics of families receiving A/V services; (3) developing a A/V Program Resources Binder; (4) developing an informational directory of statewide SV service providers; and (5) identifying model programs that can be replicated on both state and national levels.
Legislative Report 6: California's Access to Visitation Program: Fiscal Year 2005-2006 (July 2007)
Highlights the total number of clients served for fiscal year 2005-2006 and how the courts and their subcontractors are promoting and encouraging healthy parent and child relationships through the grant-related services. Although no specific recommendations are made in the report, programmatically, the greatest challenge and statewide need continues to be adequate funding to meet essential court-related services. The report highlights that to assist the courts, program administrators, program constituents, and the Legislature in evaluating future policy decisions, the first in a series of future statistical data reports will be reported regarding the AV Data Collection and Reporting System. In fiscal year 2008, a demographic profile of the characteristics of families receiving services will be provided.
Legislative Report 7: Ten Years of Access to Visitation Grant Program Services (Fiscal Years 1997-2007) (March 2008)
The grant program celebrated its 10-year anniversary in fiscal year 2006–2007. The report showcases programs funded, program successes and accomplishments, innovative promising practices, and program service delivery gaps and challenges. Although no formal recommendations are made in the report, it does identify various challenges and complexities regarding the administration and operation of the grant-related services that limit the ability of the grants to address the great demand for program services.
Legislative Report 8: California's Access to Visitation Grant Program (Fiscal Year 2009-2010) (March 2010)