5101:2-48-17 Assessor visits and contacts with children in adoptive homes prior to finalization.

(A) Visits and contacts shall be conducted by the assessor within the public children services agency (PCSA) or private child placing agency (PCPA) who is responsible for the child's case, or another assessor employed or contracted by the PCSA or PCPA who has been delegated to act on behalf of the assigned assessor in his or her absence.

(B) The frequency of visits with the child and the adoptive parent(s) shall be as follows:

(1) At a minimum, one face-to-face visit with the child and adoptive parent(s) in the adoptive home shall be made during the first seven days of the placement, not including the date of placement.

(2) At a minimum, one face-to-face visit with the child and adoptive parent(s) in the adoptive home shall be made during the first thirty days of placement, not including the visit during the first seven days of placement.

(3) After the first thirty days, at a minimum of one face-to-face visit with the child and adoptive parent(s) in the adoptive home shall be made monthly.

(C) The frequency of visits with any other household member shall be as follows:

(1) At a minimum, one face-to-face visit in the home with any household member whose permanent residence is the adoptive home shall be made every sixty days.

(2) At a minimum, two face-to-face visits in the home prior to finalization with any household member whose permanent residence is the adoptive home although he or she may temporarily reside elsewhere. No less than sixty days between visits.

(D) During each visit, the assessor shall gather information on how the placement is progressing from the child, as appropriate to his or her ability to communicate, the adoptive parent(s) and other household members, in applicable visits. All contacts and visits shall be documented in the child's case record and address the following:

(1) The child's safety and well-being within the adoptive home. In assessing the child's safety and well-being, the assessor shall consider the following through observation and individualized interviews with each person obtained during the visit:

(a) The child's current behavior and emotional and social functioning in the adoptive home and any other settings.

(b) The child's adjustment to the placement.

(c) The child's feelings around loss, separation and the reasons for being adopted.

(2) Any new information regarding the child, the adoptive parent(s) or the other household members, including, but not limited to:

(a) Changes in the marital status.

(b) Significant changes in the health status of a household member.

(c) Placement of additional children.

(d) Birth of a child.

(e) Death of a child or household member.

(f) A criminal charge, conviction or arrest of the child, adoptive parent(s) or any household member.

(g) Addition or removal of temporary or permanent household members.

(h) Family's relocation.

(i) Child's daily activities.

(j) A change in the adoptive parent(s) employment or any financial hardships.

(k) Any supportive services needs for the child or adoptive parent(s) to assure the child's safety and well-being.

(E) For a child who is placed through the "Interstate Compact for the Placement of Children" into an approved adoptive home outside of Ohio:

(1) Request the out-of-state children services agency (CSA) to conduct visits with the adoptive family in the home as identified in this rule and to submit written supervisory reports on a monthly basis.

(2) At a minimum, one face to face visit shall be conducted by the assessor within the PCSA or PCPA who is responsible for the child's case, or another assessor employed or contracted by the PCSA or PCPA who has been delegated to act on behalf of the assigned assessor in his or her absence once every six month period prior to the finalization of the adoption.

(3) The assessor shall observe and document the interaction between the adoptive child, the adoptive parent and all other household members pursuant to this rule.

(F) If the adoptive parent(s) or other household member(s) knowingly makes a false statement that results in the assessor reassessment of an approved or updated homestudy, the assessor shall report incidents of falsification according to procedures pursuant to rule 5101:2-33-13 of the Administrative Code.

(G) The assessor shall complete the JFS 01699 "ODJFS Prefinalization Adoption Assessment Report" (rev. 12/2006) prior to the issuance of a final decree of adoption or finalization of an interlocutory order of adoption. The report shall include the following information:

(1) Dates of contact with the adoptive parent(s), the child and all other household members according to this rule.

(2) Information regarding the child, adoptive parent(s) and all other household members' adjustment to the adoptive placement.

(3) Present and anticipated needs of the child, the adoptive parent(s) and all other household members for adoptive services, adoption subsidies assistance and medicaid.

(4) Physical, mental and developmental condition of the child.

(5) Biological family background of the child, including identifying information about the biological or other legal parent(s), if known.

(6) Reasons for the child's placement with the adoptive parent(s) and the circumstances under which the child was placed in the home of the adoptive parent(s).

(7) Adoptive parent(s) and all household members' attitudes toward the proposed adoption.

(8) If the child is an Indian child as defined in 25 U.S.C. 1903(4) , how the placement complies with the "Indian Child Welfare Act of 1978", 25 U.S.C. 1901 (11/8/78).

(9) Prefinalization services which have been requested, provided or agreed upon.

(10) Prefinalization services planned, but not provided, and the reason the services were not provided.

(11) The child's psychological background, if known, including prior history of abuse and behavioral problems of the child.

(H) The assessor shall file the JFS 01699 with the court where the adoption petition is pending no later than twenty days prior to the date scheduled for the final hearing on the adoption unless the court determines there is good cause for filing the report at a later date.

(I) The assessor shall provide a copy of the JFS 01699 to the prospective adoptive parent(s) no later than twenty days prior to the date scheduled for the final hearing on the adoption. All identifying information about the biological or other legal parent(s) shall be deleted prior to providing a copy of this report to the prospective adoptive parent(s).

(J) The agency having custody of the child shall maintain in the child's case record a copy of the JFS 01699 provided to the prospective adoptive parent(s), including the date the information was provided, and the prospective adoptive parent's written acknowledgment of receipt. The agency shall provide a copy of the acknowledgment of receipt to the prospective adoptive parent(s).

(K) The adoptive family case record shall contain a copy of the JFS 01699 provided to the adoptive family and written acknowledgment of the family's receipt of the information.

(L) Unless a court determines that it is in the best interest of the child and orders that an assessor conduct a prefinalization assessment, the JFS 01699 is not required if the prospective adoptive parent(s) is the child's stepparent.

Replaces: 5101:2-48-17

Effective: 06/15/2009
R.C. 119.032 review dates: 08/01/2013
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: 3107.12 , 5153.166
Rule Amplifies: 3107.031 , 3107.032 , 3107.101 , 3107.12 , 5153.16
Prior Effective Dates: 12/30/66, 10/1/86, 7/01/90, 9/18/96, 2/13/98 (Emer.), 5/14/98, 2/15/02, 9/1/03, 12/11/06