5101:2-5-24 Foster home recertifications.

(A) All currently certified foster homes shall be recertified every two years from the beginning date of the current certificate. If a homestudy is simultaneously approved for adoption and certified for foster care by the same agency, the spans shall be the same for both programs from the date of the foster home certification.

(1) If an approved adoptive home is subsequently certified for foster care by the same agency that approved the home for adoption, the adoptive homestudy shall be updated at the same time the home is initially certified for foster care so that the spans will coincide.

(2) If a certified foster home is subsequently approved for adoption by the same agency that certified the home for foster care, the next adoption update shall be completed when the current foster care certificate is recertified so that the spans will coincide.

(B) The public children services agency (PCSA), private child placing agency (PCPA), or private noncustodial agency (PNA) shall ensure that employees or persons under contract with the agency to complete foster home recertifications comply with the following requirements:

(1) The assessor definition in rule 5101:2-1-01 of the Administrative Code.

(2) Rule 5101:2-48-06 of the Administrative Code.

(3) Section 3107.014 of the Revised Code.

(C) The recommending agency shall notify the foster caregiver of the date of expiration of the foster home certificate not less than ninety or more than one hundred fifty days prior to the expiration date. The notification shall:

(1) Identify any information or documentation that is required for the recertification.

(2) Be completed on the JFS 01331, "Notice of Expiration and Reapplication for a Foster Home Certificate or Adoption Homestudy Approval" (rev. 12/2014).

(D) Following agency notification to the foster caregiver as required by paragraph (C) of this rule, if the caregiver fails to either reapply or voluntarily terminate prior to the expiration date of the certificate, the foster home certificate shall expire. If the family wishes to become certified after the expiration date, they shall reapply for initial certification pursuant to rule 5101:2-5-20 of the Administrative Code.

(1) If a foster home certificate expires because a caregiver has failed to reapply there are no rights to appeal pursuant to Chapter 119. of the Revised Code.

(2) Following the expiration of a foster home certificate:

(a) If the agency has access to the statewide automated child welfare information system (SACWIS), the agency shall enter the appropriate data into the system to recommend closure of the home.

(b) If the agency does not have access to SACWIS, the agency shall submit a JFS 01317 "Recommendation for Certification/Recertification of a Foster Home" (rev. 1/2003) to the Ohio department of job and family services (ODJFS) to recommend closure of the home.

(E) If a foster caregiver(s) has re-applied for a foster home certificate at least thirty days prior to the expiration of a current certificate, an assessor shall complete a JFS 01385, "Assessment for Child Placement Update" (rev. 12/2014), ensure that the foster caregiver(s) remains in compliance with the requirements set forth in Chapters 5101:2-5 and 5101:2-7 of the Administrative Code, and determine the continued suitability of the caregiver to serve as a foster caregiver. The agency shall compile and review the following documents, in addition to completing the JFS 01385:

(1) The most recent JFS 01653 "Medical Statement for Foster Care/Adoptive Applicant and All Household Members" (rev. 6/2009) completed for the applicant and all household members by a licensed physician, physician assistant, clinical nurse specialist, certified nurse practitioner or certified nurse-midwife. The agency may require a new JFS 01653 if the agency deems it necessary.

(2) The agency may require a report of a physical, psychiatric or psychological examination or treatment of the caregiver or other household member in order to ensure the safety, health or care of a foster child. The examination shall be conducted by a licensed physician, psychologist, or other certified or licensed professional.

(3) The most recent fire inspection by a state certified fire safety inspector or the state fire marshal's office using the JFS 01200 "Fire Inspection Report for Residential Facilities Certified by ODJFS" (rev. 2/2015) or other form used for a local or state fire inspection. The agency may require a new fire inspection prior to recommending the home for recertification if the agency deems it necessary to ensure the home is free from conditions which may be hazardous to the safety of a foster child.

(4) The most recent JFS 01681 "Applicant Financial Statement." (rev. 10/2000).The agency may require a new JFS 01681 if there have been any substantial changes to the foster family's financial situation.

(5) The most recent annual well water test approved by the health department, if applicable.

(6) If the agency has the ability to complete the search in SACWIS, the agency shall complete an alleged perpetrator search of abuse and neglect report history through the system for each foster caregiver and adult household member. If the agency does not have the ability to complete the search in SACWIS, the agency shall request a search of the system from ODJFS for each foster caregiver and each adult household member.

(a) A report with the results of the search shall be placed in the foster home record.

(b) This report is to be used to determine the continued suitability of the foster family.

(7) The agency shall conduct a safety audit utilizing the JFS 01348 "Safety Audit" (rev. 12/2014) completed within six months prior to recommending a foster home for recertification, documenting that the residence continues to meet all safety standards. Any deficiencies noted on the JFS 01348 shall result in the completion of a rule violation report and a corrective action plan in accordance with paragraph (E) of rule 5101:2-5-28 of the Administrative Code.

(8) The most recent criminal records checks for all foster caregivers and adult household members. Once a foster caregiver is certified, a new criminal records check shall be conducted, pursuant to rule 5101:2-5-09.1 of the Administrative Code, for the foster caregiver(s) and each adult household member every four years prior to recommending a foster home for recertification. If an existing resident of the home, including youth placed in the home, turned eighteen years of age during the current certification span, the agency shall have criminal records checks completed at the time of the next recertification and every four years thereafter at the time of recertification.

(9) Documentation that the foster caregiver(s) has completed the required ongoing training pursuant to rule 5101:2-5-33 of the Administrative Code. If the foster caregiver has not completed the required continuing training, the agency may recommend recertification if the situation meets the specifications of the agency's good cause policy pursuant to rule 5101:2-5-13 of the Administrative Code.

(F) An assessor's recertification of a foster home shall include at least one home visit and one interview with each member of the household (except foster children) over the age of four years currently residing in the home. This may be a joint interview or individual interviews.

(G) If an agency receives a completed JFS 01331 at least thirty days prior to the expiration date of a foster home certificate, an agency shall follow the requirements listed in this rule to complete the assessment for recertification.

(1) At the completion of the assessment and prior to the expiration of the foster home certificate:

(a) An agency with access to SACWIS shall enter the required data into the system documenting one of the following:

(i) Recertification.

(ii) Denial of recertification.

(iii) Closure, based on receipt of a voluntary withdrawal.

(b) An agency without access to SACWIS shall submit a JFS 01317 to ODJFS documenting one of the following:

(i) Recertification.

(ii) Denial of recertification.

(iii) Closure, based on receipt of a voluntary withdrawal.

(2) The effective date of a foster home certificate shall be the first day following the expiration of the previous certificate. For only those certifications in which paragraph (I) of this rule apply, the effective date shall be the date that ODJFS receives the recommendation for certification from the agency, which shall be no more than thirty days past the expiration date of the current certificate.

(H) If an agency receives a completed JFS 01331 less than thirty days prior to the expiration date of a foster home certificate, the agency may complete the requirements listed in this rule if they have sufficient time and resources to complete the assessment and submit the requirements listed in paragraph (G) of this rule prior to the expiration of the foster home certificate.

(1) If the agency is unable to complete the recertification prior to the expiration, the foster care certificate will expire on the date of expiration.

(2) If the foster care certification expires, the agency shall, within ten days after the expiration date of the certification:

(a) Provide written notification to the caregiver of the following:

(i) That the foster care certification has expired.

(ii) That if the family would like to obtain foster care certification, the family must reapply for initial certification pursuant to rule 5101:2-5-20 of the Administrative Code.

(b) An agency with access to SACWIS shall enter the required data into the system to close the provider because the foster care certification has expired.

(c) An agency without access to SACWIS shall submit a JFS 01317 to ODJFS documenting the home has closed because the foster care certification has expired.

(I) For certifications with an expiration date within ninety days after the effective date of this rule, agencies may take up to an additional thirty days past the expiration date of the current certificate to complete the requirements listed in paragraph (G) of this rule if all of the following apply:

(1) The agency or family is unable to complete the recertification requirements listed in this rule prior to the expiration date of the certificate.

(2) The family submitted the JFS 01331 less than thirty days prior to the expiration date of the current certificate.

(J) The determination of the specific number, age, and gender of children the foster home is certified for is the joint decision of the caregiver(s) and the assessor, based on the caregiver's strengths and needs, and the physical structure of the residence.

(1) All placements in a foster home shall be in compliance with this determination and with the provisions of rule 5101:2-5-32 of the Administrative Code.

(2) Upon the request from a foster caregiver, the JFS 1673-A "Child Characteristics Checklist" (rev. 12/2006) may be updated as often as needed.

Replaces: 5101:2-5-24

Effective: 11/1/2015
Five Year Review (FYR) Dates: 11/01/2020
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: 5103.03, 5103.18
Rule Amplifies: 2151.86, 5103.02, 5103.03, 5103.18
Prior Effective Dates: 12/30/66, 10/1/86, 7/2/90 (Emer.), 10/1/90, 1/1/91, 9/18/96, 7/1/00, 1/1/03, 12/11/06, 12/1/09, 10/1/11