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2014 California Rules of Court

Rule 5.810. Reviews, hearings, and permanency planning

(a) Six-month status review hearings (§§ 727.2, 11404.1)

For any ward removed from the custody of his or her parent or guardian under section 726 and placed in a home under section 727, the court must conduct a status review hearing no less frequently than once every six months from the date the ward entered foster care. The court may consider the hearing at which the initial order for placement is made as the first status review hearing.

(1)Consideration of reports (§ 727.2(d))

The court must review and consider the social study report and updated case plan submitted by the probation officer and the report submitted by any CASA volunteer, and any other reports filed with the court under section 727.2(d).

(2)Return of child if not detrimental (§ 727.2(f))

At any status review hearing before the first permanency hearing, the court must order the return of the ward to the parent or guardian unless it finds the probation department has established by a preponderance of evidence that return would create a substantial risk of detriment to the safety, protection, or physical or emotional well-being of the ward. The probation department has the burden of establishing that detriment. In making its determination, the court must review and consider all reports submitted to the court and must consider the efforts and progress demonstrated by the child and the family and the extent to which the child availed himself or herself of the services provided.

(3)Findings and orders (§ 727.2(e))

The court must consider the safety of the ward and make findings and orders that determine the following:

(A)The continuing necessity for and appropriateness of the placement;

(B)The extent of the probation department's compliance with the case plan in making reasonable efforts to safely return the child to the child's home and to complete whatever steps are necessary to finalize the permanent placement of the child;

(C)Whether it is necessary to limit the rights of the parent or guardian to make educational or developmental-services decisions for the child. If the court limits those rights or, if the ward is 18 years of age or older and has chosen not to make educational or developmental-services decisions for him- or herself or has been deemed incompetent, finds that it is in the best interests of the ward, the court must appoint a responsible adult as the educational rights holder as defined in rule 5.502. Any limitation on the rights of a parent or guardian to make educational or developmental-services decisions for a ward must be specified in the court order. The court must follow the procedures in rules 5.649-5.651;

(D)The extent of progress that has been made by the child and parent or guardian toward alleviating or mitigating the causes necessitating placement in foster care;

(E)The likely date by which the child may return to and be safely maintained in the home or placed for adoption, legal guardianship, or another permanent plan;

(F)In the case of a child or youth who is 16 years of age or older, the services needed to assist the child or youth in making the transition from foster care to independent living;

(G)Whether the child or youth was actively involved, as age- and developmentally appropriate, in the development of his or her own case plan and plan for permanent placement. If the court finds that the child or youth was not appropriately involved, the court must order the probation department to actively involve the child or youth in the development of his or her own case plan and plan for permanent placement, unless the court finds that the child or youth is unable, unavailable, or unwilling to participate; and

(H)Whether each parent was actively involved in the development of the case plan and plan for permanent placement. If the court finds that any parent was not actively involved, the court must order the probation department to actively involve that parent in the development of the case plan and plan for permanent placement, unless the court finds that the parent is unable, unavailable, or unwilling to participate.

(I)Each parent was not actively involved in the development of the case plan and plan for permanent placement. If the court makes such a finding, the court must order the agency to actively involve each parent in the development of the case plan and plan for permanent placement, unless the court finds that each parent is unable, unavailable, or unwilling to participate.

(4)Basis for Findings and Orders (§ 727.2(e))

The determinations required by (a)(3) must be made on a case-by-case basis, and the court must reference, in its written findings, the probation officer's report and any other evidence relied on in reaching its decision.

(Subd (a) amended effective January 1, 2014; previously amended effective January 1, 1998, January 1, 2001, January 1, 2003, January 1, 2004, and January 1, 2007.)

(b) Permanency planning hearings (§§ 727.2, 727.3, 11404.1)

A permanency planning hearing for any ward who has been removed from the custody of a parent or guardian and not returned at a previous review hearing must be held within 12 months of the date the ward entered foster care and periodically thereafter, but no less frequently than once every 12 months while the ward remains in placement. However, when no reunification services are offered to the parents or guardians under section 727.2(b), the first permanency planning hearing must occur within 30 days of disposition.

(1)em] Consideration of reports (§ 727.3)

The court must review and consider the social study report and updated case plan submitted by the probation officer and the report submitted by any CASA volunteer, and any other reports filed with the court under section 727.3(a)(2).

(2)Findings and orders (§§ 727.2(e), 727.3(a))

At each permanency planning hearing, the court must consider the safety of the ward and make findings and orders regarding the following:

(A)The continuing necessity for and appropriateness of the placement;

(B)The extent of the probation department's compliance with the case plan in making reasonable efforts to safely return the child to the child's home and to complete whatever steps are necessary to finalize the permanent placement of the child;

(C)The extent of progress that has been made by the child and parent or guardian toward alleviating or mitigating the causes necessitating placement in foster care;

(D)The permanent plan for the child or youth, as described in (3);

(E)Whether the child or youth was actively involved, as age- and developmentally appropriate, in the development of his or her own case plan and plan for permanent placement. If the court finds that the child or youth was not appropriately involved, the court must order the probation officer to actively involve the child or youth in the development of his or her own case plan and plan for permanent placement, unless the court finds that the child or youth is unable, unavailable, or unwilling to participate; and

(F)Whether each parent was actively involved in the development of the case plan and plan for permanent placement. If the court finds that any parent was not actively involved, the court must order the probation department to actively involve that parent in the development of the case plan and plan for permanent placement, unless the court finds that the parent is unable, unavailable, or unwilling to participate.

(G)Each parent was not actively involved in the development of the case plan and plan for permanent placement. If the court makes such a finding, the court must order the agency to actively involve each parent in the development of the case plan and plan for permanent placement, unless the court finds that each parent is unable, unavailable, or unwilling to participate.

(3)em] Selection of a permanent plan (§ 727.3(b))

At the first permanency planning hearing, the court must select a permanent plan. At subsequent permanency planning hearings, the court must either make a finding that the current permanent plan is appropriate or select a different permanent plan, including returning the child home, if appropriate. The court must choose from one of the following permanent plans, which are, in order of priority:

(A)A permanent plan that immediately returns the child to the physical custody of the parent or guardian. This plan must be the permanent plan unless no reunification services were offered under section 727.2(b), or unless the court finds that the probation department has established by a preponderance of evidence that return would create a substantial risk of detriment to the safety, protection, or physical or emotional well being of the ward. The probation department has the burden of establishing that detriment. In making its determination, the court must review and consider all reports submitted to the court and must consider the efforts or progress, or both, demonstrated by the child and family and the extent to which the child availed himself or herself of the services provided.

(B)A permanent plan of return of the child to the physical custody of the parent or guardian, after 6 additional months of reunification services. The court may not order this plan unless the court finds that there is a substantial probability that the child will be able to return home within 18 months of the date of initial removal.

(C)A permanent plan of adoption. When this plan is identified, the court must order that a hearing under section 727.31 be held within 120 days.

(D)A permanent plan of legal guardianship. When this plan is ordered, the court must set a hearing under the procedures described in section 728 and rule 5.815.

(E)A permanent plan of placement with a fit and willing relative. When this plan is ordered, the court must specify that the child will be placed with the appropriate relative on a permanent basis.

(F)A permanent plan of placement in a planned permanent living arrangement. The court may order this permanent plan only after considering, and ruling out, each of the other permanent plan options listed above. If, after doing so, the court concludes that a planned permanent living arrangement is the most appropriate permanent plan for the child, it must also enter a finding, by clear and convincing evidence, that there is a compelling reason, as defined in section 727.3(c), for determining that a plan of termination of parental rights and adoption is not in the best interest of the child. When a planned permanent living arrangement is ordered, the court must specify the type of placement. The court must also specify the goal of the placement, which may include, but is not limited to, a goal of the child returning home, emancipation, guardianship, or permanent placement with a relative.

(4)em] Involvement of parents or guardians

If the child has a continuing involvement with his or her parents or legal guardians, they must be involved in the planning for permanent placement. The permanent plan order must include an order regarding the nature and frequency of visitation with the parents or guardians.

(Subd (b) amended effective January 1, 2014; adopted effective January 1, 2001; previously amended effective January 1, 2003, and January 1, 2007.)

(c) Postpermanency status review hearings (§ 727.2)

A postpermanency status review hearing must be conducted for wards in placement annually, 6 months after each permanency planning hearing.

(1)em] Consideration of reports (§ 727.2(d))

The court must review and consider the social study report and updated case plan submitted for this hearing by the probation officer and the report submitted by any CASA volunteer, and any other reports filed with the court under section 727.2(d).

(2)Findings and orders (§ 727.2(g))

At each postpermanency status review hearing, the court must consider the safety of the ward and make findings and orders regarding the following:

(A)Whether the current permanent plan continues to be appropriate. If not, the court must select a different permanent plan, including returning the child home, if appropriate. The court must not order the permanent plan of returning home after 6 more months of reunification services, as described in (b)(3)(B), unless it has been 18 months or less since the date the child was removed from home;

(B)The continuing necessity for and appropriateness of the placement;

(C)The extent of the probation department's compliance with the case plan in making reasonable efforts to complete whatever steps are necessary to finalize the permanent plan for the child; and

(D)Whether the child or youth was actively involved, as age- and developmentally appropriate, in the development of his or her own case plan and plan for permanent placement. If the court finds that the child or youth was not appropriately involved, the court must order the probation department to actively involve the child or youth in the development of his or her own case plan and plan for permanent placement, unless the court finds that the child or youth is unable, unavailable, or unwilling to participate.

(Subd (c) amended effective January 1, 2014; adopted effective January 1, 2001; previously amended effective January 1, 2003, and January 1, 2007.)

(d) Notice of hearings; service; contents (§ 727.4)

No earlier than 30 nor later than 15 calendar days before each hearing date, the probation officer must serve written notice on all persons entitled to notice under section 727.4, as well as the current caregiver, any CASA volunteer or educational rights holder, and all counsel of record. A Notice of Hearing-Juvenile Delinquency Proceeding (form JV-625) must be used.

(Subd (d) amended effective January 1, 2014; adopted effective January 1, 2001; previously amended effective January 1, 2003, January 1, 2006, and January 1, 2007.)

(e) Report (§§ 706.5, 706.6, 727.2(c), 727.3(a)(1), 727.4(b))

Before each hearing described above, the probation officer must investigate and prepare a social study report that must include an updated case plan and all of the information required in sections 706.5, 706.6, 727.2, and 727.3.

(1)The report must contain recommendations for court orders and must document the evidentiary basis for those recommendations.

(2)At least 10 calendar days before each hearing, the petitioner must file the report and provide copies of the report to the ward, the parent or guardian, all attorneys of record, and any CASA volunteer.

(Subd (e) amended effective January 1, 2014; adopted as subd (b); previously amended and relettered as subd (e) effective January 1, 2001; previously amended effective January 1, 1998, January 1, 2003, and January 1, 2007.)

(f) Hearing by administrative panel (§§ 727.2(h), 727.4(d)(7))

The status review hearings described in (a) and (c) may be conducted by an administrative review panel, provided:

(1)The ward, parent or guardian, and all those entitled to notice under section 727.4 may attend;

(2)Proper notice is provided;

(3)The panel has been appointed by the presiding judge of the juvenile court and includes at least one person who is not responsible for the case management of, or delivery of service to, the ward or the parent or guardian; and

(4)The panel makes findings as required by (a)(3) or (c)(2) above and submits them to the juvenile court for approval and inclusion in the court record.

(Subd (f) amended effective January 1, 2007; adopted effective January 1, 2001; previously amended effective January 1, 2003.)

Rule 5.810 amended effective January 1, 2014; adopted as rule 1496 effective January 1, 1991; previously amended effective January 1, 1998, January 1, 2001, January 1, 2003, January 1, 2004, and January 1, 2006; previously amended and renumbered effective January 1, 2007.

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