Federally Funded Dependency Representation Program

Federally Funded Dependency Representation Program

A 2019 change in the federal government’s Child Welfare Policy Manual now permits claiming federal foster care dollars (title IV-E funds) for attorneys providing legal representation to a title IV-E–eligible child in foster care or to the child’s parents. The Judicial Council has been working with the California Department of Social Services (CDSS) to develop a program through which court appointed dependency counsel in California can access these additional federal funds.


Program Information

Additional information about the Federally Funded Dependency Representation Program is included in the Program Update Judicial Council Report on Court Appointed Counsel Funding, and resource fact sheet.

California Rules of Court 5.560 and Welfare and Institutions Code section 317 set forth the duties of court appointed dependency counsel, as well as the training and experience requirements that must be met to be eligible for appointment.

Frequently Asked Questions

Eligible Activities

Eligible Activities for Attorneys 
Eligible Activities for Social Workers/Investigators/Peer Partners

Important Program Dates

  • FY2023–2024 Invoice Deadlines
  • 12/30/23—Deadline to submit notice of intent to participate in FFDRP to qualify for shortfall funding. For additional information, reference FAQ Section G: State Funding to Address FFDRP Federal Funding Shortfall.
  • 9/30/24—Deadline to process shortfall invoices

National Information

Memorandum (Administration for Children and Families, January 17, 2017)
Technical Bulletin (Administration for Children and Families, July 20, 2020)
Memorandum re High Quality Legal Representation (Administration for Children and Families, January 14, 2021)
Family Justice Initiative 
National Association of Counsel for Children 
Additional Articles

If you have questions about the Federally Funded Dependency Representation Program, please email ffdrp@jud.ca.gov.