AN ACT PROVIDING FOR PLACEMENT OF CERTAIN CHILDREN WITHOUT LOSS OF CUSTODY.
Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives
in General Court assembled, and by the authority of the same,
Paragraph A of section 23 of chapter 119 of the
General Laws, as appearing in the 2000 Official Edition, is hereby amended by
inserting after the first paragraph the following 2 paragraphs:-
The department may file a petition for care and responsibility in the
court on behalf of a child accepted into foster care if the department
determines that continued placement beyond 6 months is required for reasons
unrelated to parental unfitness and the parent consents to continued
placement. At the initial hearing on the petition, the court shall determine
continued placement with the department is in the child's best interests and
shall issue its determination, including the rationale therefor, in written
The allowance of the petition shall not abrogate a parent's right
make decisions on behalf of the child, but the department may accept from
the parent a temporary delegation of certain rights and responsibilities
necessary to continue to provide foster care for the child under conditions
agreed upon by both and terminable by either.
Notwithstanding any general or special law to the contrary, a permanency
shall be held within 60 days of the transfer of responsibility by order of the
probate court or within 12 months of initial placement into foster care with
the department, whichever date is later. The hearing shall be conducted as
provided in section 29B.
Section 29C of said chapter 119, as so appearing,
is hereby amended by inserting after the word "home", in line 7, the
following words:- ; but, if a child has been placed
voluntarily with the department by
the parent pursuant to paragraph A of section 23 and the parent
consents to continued placement pursuant to a petition filed pursuant to said
paragraph A or paragraph C of said section 23, the court shall determine at
hearing only whether continued placement is in the child's best interests.