Searching for Relatives and Kin: State and Local Examples
Find State and local resources about locating relatives of children in foster care in this section.
Absent Parent and Relative Search Handbook: A Guide for Social Workers (Word - 518 KB)
Kentucky Cabinet for Health and Family Services, Department for Community Based Services (2010)
Describes the importance of conducting a search and provides tools and resources to help social workers locate an absent parent or relative.
Diligent Search Resources
Center for the Advancement of Child Welfare Practice
Provides forms and information for conducting a diligent search for relative caregivers of children in foster care in Florida.
Diligent Search Packet (PDF - 882 KB)
Statewide Adoption and Permanency Network (2006)
Assists Legal Services Initiative paralegals and caseworkers in county agencies throughout Pennsylvania with their diligent search requests. The packet illustrates each county's unique efforts and procedures in searching for parents or other possible placement resources for children.
Diligent Search: Steps on When and Where to Conduct Your Own Diligent Search for a Child's Missing Parent or Family Member (PDF – 128 KB)
District of Columbia Child and Family Services Agency (2009)
Provides guidelines about when and where social workers can search for absent family members of children in the child welfare system.
Family Search and Engagement: A Comprehensive Practice Guide (PDF - 1178 KB)
EMQ Children and Family Services (2008)
Includes a set of practices designed to locate, engage, connect, and support family resources for youth who lack permanent connections. The guide offers a variety of practical tools and documentation to assist the child welfare practitioner in the day-to-day work of family search and engagement.
Locating the Non-Custodial Parent
Missouri Department of Social Services, Children's Division (2007)
In Child Welfare Manual
Reviews policies on locating relatives after a child enters out-of-home care and discusses documenting reasonable efforts to locate a non-custodial parent..
Practice Guide For Locating and Involving Non-Custodial Parents, Alleged Fathers, and Relatives (PDF - 86 KB)
Wisconsin Department of Health and Family Services (2007)
Discusses Wisconsin law and provides minimum standards, guidance, and tools to assist agencies in identifying, locating, and involving noncustodial parents, alleged fathers, and relatives as resources for children, especially children who have been removed from their homes.
Relative Placement in Nebraska (PDF - 160 KB)
Foster Care Reform Legal Resource Center (2008)
Assists Nebraska child welfare practitioners in identifying safe and appropriate relative child care early in the child welfare process, and discusses policy responses implemented in other States to address issues related to kinship care.
Relative Search Best Practice Guide
Arizona Department of Economic Security (2009)
In Children's Services Manual
Provides guidance to social service agencies for performing relative searches when a child is removed from the home.
Relative Search Best Practice Guide (PDF - 440 KB)
Minnesota Department of Human Services (2005)
Assists social service agencies in performing relative searches when a child is removed from the home. Examples of how different agencies in the United States have developed systems to successfully identify and locate relatives are provided.
Relative Search and Placements (PDF - 137 KB)
Iowa Department of Human Services (2007)
Discusses best practices for placing foster children with relative caregivers. The guide explains the benefits of kinship care, steps for conducting a diligent search for relative caregivers, activities that support a diligent search, documentation of a diligent search, and assessment of the safety of a kinship placement.
Supervising for Comprehensive Relative Identification and Exploration. Trainer Curriculum
Muskie School of Public Service Child Welfare Training Institute
Focuses on identification of relatives of children involved in child welfare services and includes a curriculum, PowerPoint, handouts, and posters.