Court Hearings for the Permanent Placement of Children - Rhode Island

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Schedule of Hearings

Citation: Gen. Laws §§ 40-11-12.1; 40-11-12.2

The department shall conduct a case plan review every 6 months.

A permanency hearing shall be held as follows:

  • Within 12 months of the child's placement in care and at least every 12 months thereafter
  • Within 30 days after a finding that reasonable efforts to reunify are not required

Persons Entitled to Attend Hearings

Citation: Gen. Laws § 40-11.12.1

At the permanency hearing, all parties shall be allowed to be heard. The foster parents, any preadoptive parent, or relative providing care for the child shall be provided with notice of the hearing and may attend and present a report, oral or written, containing recommendations as to the best interests of the child. Such opportunity to be heard does not require that any foster parent, preadoptive parent, or relative providing care for the child be made a party to a review or hearing.

Determinations Made at Hearings

Citation: Gen. Laws § 40-11.12.1

At the permanency hearing, the court shall determine the following:

  • The appropriateness of the Department of Children, Youth and Families' plan for service to the child and parent(s)
  • What services have been offered to strengthen and reunify the family
  • What efforts have been or should be made to evaluate or plan for other modes of care if return home of the child is not likely
  • Any further efforts that will promote the best interests of the child

Permanency Options

Citation: Gen. Laws §§ 40-11-12.1; 40-11-12.2

Permanency options include the following:

  • Return to the parent
  • Placement for adoption
  • Referral for legal guardianship
  • Placement with a fit and willing relative
  • Placement in another planned permanent living arrangement in cases for which the department has documented a compelling reason why another permanency option would not be in the best interests of the child