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H.B. 416





Chief Sponsor: V. Lowry Snow

Senate Sponsor: Lyle W. Hillyard

             7      LONG TITLE
             8      General Description:
             9          This bill changes references to the Office of the Guardian Ad Litem.
             10      Highlighted Provisions:
             11          This bill:
             12          .    changes references to "Office of the Guardian Ad Litem," to "Office of Guardian Ad
             13      Litem."
             14      Money Appropriated in this Bill:
             15          None
             16      Other Special Clauses:
             17          None
             18      Utah Code Sections Affected:
             19      AMENDS:
             20          78A-2-227, as last amended by Laws of Utah 2009, Chapter 32
             21          78A-6-515, as renumbered and amended by Laws of Utah 2008, Chapter 3
             22          78B-7-106, as last amended by Laws of Utah 2009, Chapter 146
             24      Be it enacted by the Legislature of the state of Utah:
             25          Section 1. Section 78A-2-227 is amended to read:
             26           78A-2-227. Appointment of attorney guardian ad litem in child abuse and neglect
             27      proceedings.

             28          (1) Except as provided in Subsection (2), a court may appoint an attorney guardian ad
             29      litem in accordance with [Title 78A,] Chapter 6, Part 9, Guardian Ad Litem, if:
             30          (a) child abuse, child sexual abuse, or neglect is alleged in any proceeding; or
             31          (b) the court considers it appropriate in any proceedings involving alleged abuse, child
             32      sexual abuse, or neglect.
             33          (2) (a) A court may not appoint an attorney guardian ad litem in a criminal case.
             34          (b) Subsection (2)(a) does not prohibit the appointment of an attorney guardian ad
             35      litem in a case where a court is determining whether to adjudicate a minor for committing an
             36      act that would be a crime if committed by an adult.
             37          (c) Subsection (2)(a) does not prohibit an attorney guardian ad litem from entering an
             38      appearance, filing motions, or taking other action in a criminal case on behalf of a minor, if:
             39          (i) the attorney guardian ad litem is appointed to represent the minor in a case that is
             40      not a criminal case; and
             41          (ii) the interests of the minor may be impacted by:
             42          (A) an order that has been, or may be, issued in the criminal case; or
             43          (B) other proceedings that have occurred, or may occur, in the criminal case.
             44          (3) If a court appoints an attorney guardian ad litem in a divorce or child custody case,
             45      the court shall:
             46          (a) specify in the order appointing the attorney guardian ad litem the specific issues in
             47      the proceeding that the attorney guardian ad litem is required to be involved in resolving, which
             48      may include issues relating to the custody of children and parent-time schedules;
             49          (b) to the extent possible, bifurcate the issues specified in the order described in
             50      Subsection (3)(a) from the other issues in the case, in order to minimize the time constraints
             51      placed upon the attorney guardian ad litem in the case; and
             52          (c) except as provided in Subsection (5), within one year after the day on which the
             53      attorney guardian ad litem is appointed in the case, issue a final order:
             54          (i) resolving the issues described in the order described in Subsection (3)(a); and
             55          (ii) terminating the appointment of the attorney guardian ad litem in the case.
             56          (4) The court shall issue an order terminating the appointment of an attorney guardian
             57      ad litem made under this section, if:
             58          (a) the court determines that the allegations of abuse or neglect are unfounded;

             59          (b) after receiving input from the attorney guardian ad litem, the court determines that
             60      the children are no longer at risk of abuse or neglect; or
             61          (c) there has been no activity in the case for which the attorney guardian ad litem is
             62      appointed for a period of six consecutive months.
             63          (5) A court may issue a written order extending the one-year period described in
             64      Subsection (3)(c) for a time-certain, if the court makes a written finding that there is a
             65      compelling reason that the court cannot comply with the requirements described in Subsection
             66      (3)(c) within the one-year period.
             67          (6) When appointing an attorney guardian ad litem for a minor under this section, a
             68      court may appoint the same attorney guardian ad litem who represents the minor in another
             69      proceeding, or who has represented the minor in a previous proceeding, if that attorney
             70      guardian ad litem is available.
             71          (7) The court is responsible for all costs resulting from the appointment of an attorney
             72      guardian ad litem and shall use funds appropriated by the Legislature for the guardian ad litem
             73      program to cover those costs.
             74          (8) (a) If the court appoints the Office of [the] Guardian Ad Litem in a civil case
             75      pursuant to this section, the court may assess all or part of those attorney fees, court costs,
             76      paralegal, staff, and volunteer expenses against the minor's parent, parents, or legal guardian in
             77      an amount that the court determines to be just and appropriate.
             78          (b) The court may not assess those fees or costs against a legal guardian, when that
             79      guardian is the state, or against a parent, parents, or legal guardian who is found to be
             80      impecunious. If a person claims to be impecunious, the court shall require of that person an
             81      affidavit of impecuniosity as provided in Section 78A-2-302 and the court shall follow the
             82      procedures and make the determinations as provided in Section 78A-2-302 .
             83          (9) An attorney guardian ad litem appointed in accordance with the requirements of
             84      this section and [Title 78A,] Chapter 6, Part 9, Guardian Ad Litem is, when serving in the
             85      scope of duties of an attorney guardian ad litem, considered an employee of this state for
             86      purposes of indemnification under the Governmental Immunity Act.
             87          Section 2. Section 78A-6-515 is amended to read:
             88           78A-6-515. Mental health therapist.
             89          (1) When a mental health practitioner is to be appointed in a parental rights action to

             90      evaluate the mental health of a parent or a child, or to provide mental health services to a parent
             91      or a child, the court:
             92          (a) may appoint any mental health therapist, as defined in Section 58-60-102 , which the
             93      court finds to be qualified;
             94          (b) may not refuse to appoint a mental health therapist for the reason that the therapist's
             95      recommendations in another case have not followed the recommendations of the Division of
             96      Child and Family Services or the Office of [the] Guardian Ad Litem; and
             97          (c) shall give strong consideration to the parent's or guardian's wishes regarding the
             98      selection of a mental health therapist.
             99          (2) This section applies to all juvenile court proceedings involving:
             100          (a) parents and children; or
             101          (b) the Division of Child and Family Services.
             102          Section 3. Section 78B-7-106 is amended to read:
             103           78B-7-106. Protective orders -- Ex parte protective orders -- Modification of
             104      orders -- Service of process -- Duties of the court.
             105          (1) If it appears from a petition for an order for protection or a petition to modify an
             106      order for protection that domestic violence or abuse has occurred or a modification of an order
             107      for protection is required, a court may:
             108          (a) without notice, immediately issue an order for protection ex parte or modify an
             109      order for protection ex parte as it considers necessary to protect the petitioner and all parties
             110      named to be protected in the petition; or
             111          (b) upon notice, issue an order for protection or modify an order after a hearing,
             112      whether or not the respondent appears.
             113          (2) A court may grant the following relief without notice in an order for protection or a
             114      modification issued ex parte:
             115          (a) enjoin the respondent from threatening to commit or committing domestic violence
             116      or abuse against the petitioner and any designated family or household member;
             117          (b) prohibit the respondent from harassing, telephoning, contacting, or otherwise
             118      communicating with the petitioner, directly or indirectly;
             119          (c) order that the respondent is excluded from the petitioner's residence and its
             120      premises, and order the respondent to stay away from the residence, school, or place of

             121      employment of the petitioner, and the premises of any of these, or any specified place
             122      frequented by the petitioner and any designated family or household member;
             123          (d) upon finding that the respondent's use or possession of a weapon may pose a
             124      serious threat of harm to the petitioner, prohibit the respondent from purchasing, using, or
             125      possessing a firearm or other weapon specified by the court;
             126          (e) order possession and use of an automobile and other essential personal effects, and
             127      direct the appropriate law enforcement officer to accompany the petitioner to the residence of
             128      the parties to ensure that the petitioner is safely restored to possession of the residence,
             129      automobile, and other essential personal effects, or to supervise the petitioner's or respondent's
             130      removal of personal belongings;
             131          (f) grant to the petitioner temporary custody of any minor children of the parties;
             132          (g) order the appointment of the [office of the] Office of Guardian Ad Litem to
             133      represent the interests of any minor children of the parties, if abuse or neglect of the minor
             134      children is alleged, or appoint a private guardian ad litem, if appropriate, pursuant to Section
             135      78A-2-228 ;
             136          (h) order any further relief that the court considers necessary to provide for the safety
             137      and welfare of the petitioner and any designated family or household member; and
             138          (i) if the petition requests child support or spousal support, at the hearing on the
             139      petition order both parties to provide verification of current income, including year-to-date pay
             140      stubs or employer statements of year-to-date or other period of earnings, as specified by the
             141      court, and complete copies of tax returns from at least the most recent year.
             142          (3) A court may grant the following relief in an order for protection or a modification
             143      of an order after notice and hearing, whether or not the respondent appears:
             144          (a) grant the relief described in Subsection (2); and
             145          (b) specify arrangements for parent-time of any minor child by the respondent and
             146      require supervision of that parent-time by a third party or deny parent-time if necessary to
             147      protect the safety of the petitioner or child.
             148          (4) Following the protective order hearing, the court shall:
             149          (a) as soon as possible, deliver the order to the county sheriff for service of process;
             150          (b) make reasonable efforts to ensure that the order for protection is understood by the
             151      petitioner, and the respondent, if present;

             152          (c) transmit electronically, by the end of the next business day after the order is issued,
             153      a copy of the order for protection to the local law enforcement agency or agencies designated
             154      by the petitioner; and
             155          (d) transmit a copy of the order to the statewide domestic violence network described
             156      in Section 78B-7-113 .
             157          (5) (a) Each protective order shall include two separate portions, one for provisions, the
             158      violation of which are criminal offenses, and one for provisions, the violation of which are civil
             159      violations, as follows:
             160          (i) criminal offenses are those under Subsections (2)(a) through (e), and under
             161      Subsection (3)(a) as it refers to Subsections (2)(a) through (e); and
             162          (ii) civil offenses are those under Subsections (2)(f), (h), and (i), and Subsection (3)(a)
             163      as it refers to Subsections (2)(f), (h), and (i).
             164          (b) The criminal provision portion shall include a statement that violation of any
             165      criminal provision is a class A misdemeanor.
             166          (c) The civil provision portion shall include a notice that violation of or failure to
             167      comply with a civil provision is subject to contempt proceedings.
             168          (6) The protective order shall include:
             169          (a) a designation of a specific date, determined by the court, when the civil portion of
             170      the protective order either expires or is scheduled for review by the court, which date may not
             171      exceed 150 days after the date the order is issued, unless the court indicates on the record the
             172      reason for setting a date beyond 150 days;
             173          (b) information the petitioner is able to provide to facilitate identification of the
             174      respondent, such as Social Security number, driver license number, date of birth, address,
             175      telephone number, and physical description; and
             176          (c) a statement advising the petitioner that:
             177          (i) after two years from the date of issuance of the protective order, a hearing may be
             178      held to dismiss the criminal portion of the protective order;
             179          (ii) the petitioner should, within the 30 days prior to the end of the two-year period,
             180      advise the court of the petitioner's current address for notice of any hearing; and
             181          (iii) the address provided by the petitioner will not be made available to the respondent.
             182          (7) Child support and spouse support orders issued as part of a protective order are

             183      subject to mandatory income withholding under Title 62A, Chapter 11, Part 4, Income
             184      Withholding in IV-D Cases, and Title 62A, Chapter 11, Part 5, Income Withholding in Non
             185      IV-D Cases, except when the protective order is issued ex parte.
             186          (8) (a) The county sheriff that receives the order from the court, pursuant to Subsection
             187      (5)(a), shall provide expedited service for orders for protection issued in accordance with this
             188      chapter, and shall transmit verification of service of process, when the order has been served, to
             189      the statewide domestic violence network described in Section 78B-7-113 .
             190          (b) This section does not prohibit any law enforcement agency from providing service
             191      of process if that law enforcement agency:
             192          (i) has contact with the respondent and service by that law enforcement agency is
             193      possible; or
             194          (ii) determines that under the circumstances, providing service of process on the
             195      respondent is in the best interests of the petitioner.
             196          (9) (a) When an order is served on a respondent in a jail or other holding facility, the
             197      law enforcement agency managing the facility shall make a reasonable effort to provide notice
             198      to the petitioner at the time the respondent is released from incarceration.
             199          (b) Notification of the petitioner shall consist of a good faith reasonable effort to
             200      provide notification, including mailing a copy of the notification to the last-known address of
             201      the victim.
             202          (10) A court may modify or vacate an order of protection or any provisions in the order
             203      after notice and hearing, except that the criminal provisions of a protective order may not be
             204      vacated within two years of issuance unless the petitioner:
             205          (a) is personally served with notice of the hearing as provided in Rules 4 and 5, Utah
             206      Rules of Civil Procedure, and the petitioner personally appears before the court and gives
             207      specific consent to the vacation of the criminal provisions of the protective order; or
             208          (b) submits a verified affidavit, stating agreement to the vacation of the criminal
             209      provisions of the protective order.
             210          (11) A protective order may be modified without a showing of substantial and material
             211      change in circumstances.
             212          (12) Insofar as the provisions of this chapter are more specific than the Utah Rules of
             213      Civil Procedure, regarding protective orders, the provisions of this chapter govern.

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    as of 2-3-12 10:20 AM

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