Placement of Children With Relatives - Hawaii

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Relative Placement for Foster Care and Guardianship

Citation: Rev. Stat. §§ 587A-4; 587A-9

The term 'hanai relative' means an adult, other than a blood relative, whom the court or department has found by credible evidence to perform or to have performed a substantial role in the upbringing or material support of a child, as attested to by the written or oral designation of the child or of another person, including other relatives of the child.

The term 'relative' means a person related to a child by blood or adoption or a hanai relative who, as determined by the court or the department, is willing and able to safely provide support to the child and the child's family.

The term 'resource family' means a person or family licensed by the Department of Human Services or another authorized agency to provide foster care services for children and can be used interchangeably with 'foster parent' and 'foster family.'

When a child must be placed outside of their home, placement preference shall be given to an approved relative.

Requirements for Placement with Relatives

Citation: Rev. Stat. §§ 587A-9; 587A-10; 587A-11

When the department receives protective custody of a child from the police, the department shall do the following:

  • Place the child in emergency foster care, unless the child is admitted to a hospital or similar institution, while the department conducts an appropriate investigation, with placement preference being given to an approved relative
  • Make reasonable efforts with authorized agencies to identify and notify all relatives within 30 days of assuming temporary foster custody of the child

The department shall provide the child's relative with an application to be the child's resource family within 15 days of the relative's request to provide foster placement for the child. The department and authorized agencies shall make reasonable efforts to identify and notify all relatives of the child within 30 days after assuming foster custody of the child.

In investigating a report of harm to a child, the department may assume temporary foster custody of the child and file a petition with the court within 3 days, excluding Saturdays, Sundays, and holidays, after the date on which the department assumes temporary foster custody of the child, with placement preference being given to an approved relative.

Requirements for Placement of Siblings

Citation: Rev. Stat. §§ 587A-26; 587A-31

At a foster custody hearing, the court shall determine whether every reasonable effort has been or is being made to place siblings or psychologically bonded children together, unless such placement is not in the children's best interests.

At each permanency hearing, the court shall make written findings as to whether the department has made reasonable efforts, in accordance with the safety and well-being of the child, to do the following:

  • Place siblings who have been removed from the family home with the same resource family, adoptive placement, or legal guardians
  • Provide for frequent visits or other on-going interactions with siblings who are not living in the same household

Relatives Who May Adopt

This issue is not addressed in the statutes reviewed.

Requirements for Adoption by Relatives

This issue is not addressed in the statutes reviewed.