§ 3700.73. Foster parent appeal of child relocation.

 (a)  Foster parents may appeal the relocation of a child from the foster family except under one of the following conditions:

   (1)  The child has been with the foster family less than 6 months.

   (2)  The removal is initiated by the court.

   (3)  The removal is to return the child to his parents.

   (4)  The removal is to place the child for adoption.

   (5)  An investigation of a report of alleged child abuse indicates the need for protective custody removal to protect the child from further serious physical or mental injury, sexual abuse or serious physical neglect as defined in Chapter 3490 (relating to protective services).

 (b)  The FFCA shall inform foster parents in writing that they may appeal the relocation of a child in accordance with subsection (a) at least 15 days prior to the relocation of the child.

 (c)  Foster parents who wish to appeal the relocation of a child shall submit to the FFCA a written appeal to be postmarked no later than 15 days after the date of the notice of their right to appeal the child’s relocation.

 (d)  Upon receipt of the foster parent’s appeal, the FFCA shall date stamp the appeal and submit it to the Department’s Office of Hearings and Appeals, Post Office Box 2675, Harrisburg, Pennsylvania 17105, within 5 working days.

 (e)  If a foster parent submits an appeal in accordance with subsection (c) and the foster parent has the right to appeal in accordance with subsection (a), the child shall remain in the foster family home pending a decision on the appeal.

 (f)  Parties to an appeal of a child’s relocation may be represented by an attorney or other representative.

Authority

   The provisions of this §  3700.73 amended under Articles II, VII, IX and X of the Public Welfare Code (62 P. S. § §  201—211, 701—774, 901—922 and 1001—1080).

Source

   The provisions of this §  3700.73 amended January 23, 1987, effective January 24, 1987, 17 Pa.B. 392. Immediately preceding text appears at serial pages (98007) to (98008).

Notes of Decisions

   Adoption Proceedings

   Foster parents do not have standing to commence adoption proceedings without the consent of the child welfare agency which has legal custody. Chester County Children & Youth Services v. Cunningham, 656 A.2d 1346 (Pa. 1995).

   Prospective adoptive parents are sufficiently distinguishable from foster parents to give standing to seek judicial review of an agency’s decision regarding custody of a child. Mitch v. Bucks County Children and Youth Social Service Agency, 556 A.2d 419 (Pa. Super. 1989); appeal denied 571 A.2d 384 (Pa. 1989).

   Custody Award

   While the legislature has provided foster parents with a specific administrative remedy where their foster child is to be relocated, no such similar provision has been provided specifying that foster parents are permitted to seek or contest a custody award of their foster child where relocation is imminent; based on the foregoing, the Supreme Court concluded that foster parents lacked standing to seek or contest custody of their foster child, who had been adjudicated dependent. In re G. C., 735 A.2d 1226 (Pa. 1999).

   Protection of Child

   Given the need for protective custody, foster parents did not have the right to insist that the foster children be left in their home pending a decision on appeal. Martz v. Department of Public Welfare, 536 A.2d 496 (Pa. Cmwlth. 1988).



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