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S.B. 232

             1     

ADOPTION CODE REVISIONS

             2     
2013 GENERAL SESSION

             3     
STATE OF UTAH

             4     
Chief Sponsor: Todd Weiler

             5     
House Sponsor: V. Lowry Snow

             6     
             7      LONG TITLE
             8      General Description:
             9          This bill modifies Title 78B, Chapter 6, Particular Proceedings, by amending
             10      procedures related to adoption.
             11      Highlighted Provisions:
             12          This bill:
             13          .    defines terms;
             14          .    specifies that a petition for adoption may be filed before the child's birth;
             15          .    states that in order for a person to be excused from providing notice of an adoption
             16      proceeding on the grounds of prior consent, the consent may not be implied consent;
             17          .    states that consent to an adoption may be implied by:
             18              .    a father failing to provide a birth mother with financial or emotional support for
             19      a period of six months before the day on which the adoptee is born;
             20              .    leaving an adoptee without knowledge of the parent's whereabouts for 30
             21      consecutive days;
             22              .    leaving the adoptee with others, without providing for support and maintaining a
             23      substantial relationship with the adoptee, for six consecutive months; and
             24              .    receiving notice of a pending adoption proceeding and failing to respond as
             25      required;
             26          .    states that in certain circumstances, implied consent may not be withdrawn;
             27          .    states that an unmarried biological father's submission to the putative father registry


             28      is considered filed when it is received by the Office of Vital Records and Statistics;
             29          .    clarifies that a preplacement adoptive evaluation is not necessary if the prospective
             30      adoptive parent is related to the child or pre-existing parent as a stepparent, sibling,
             31      half sibling, grandparent, aunt, uncle, or first cousin; and
             32          .    makes technical changes.
             33      Money Appropriated in this Bill:
             34          None
             35      Other Special Clauses:
             36          None
             37      Utah Code Sections Affected:
             38      AMENDS:
             39          78B-6-105, as last amended by Laws of Utah 2012, Chapter 340
             40          78B-6-110, as last amended by Laws of Utah 2012, Chapter 340
             41          78B-6-120, as last amended by Laws of Utah 2009, Chapter 159
             42          78B-6-121, as last amended by Laws of Utah 2012, Chapter 340
             43          78B-6-128, as last amended by Laws of Utah 2012, Chapter 340
             44          78B-6-134, as last amended by Laws of Utah 2008, Chapter 137 and renumbered and
             45      amended by Laws of Utah 2008, Chapter 3
             46      ENACTS:
             47          78B-6-120.1, Utah Code Annotated 1953
             48     
             49      Be it enacted by the Legislature of the state of Utah:
             50          Section 1. Section 78B-6-105 is amended to read:
             51           78B-6-105. District court venue -- Jurisdiction of juvenile court -- Jurisdiction
             52      over nonresidents -- Time for filing.
             53          (1) Adoption proceedings shall be commenced by filing a petition with the clerk of the
             54      district court either:
             55          (a) in the district where the prospective adoptive parent resides;
             56          (b) if the prospective adoptive parent is not a resident of this state, in the district where:
             57          (i) the adoptee was born;
             58          (ii) the adoptee resides on the day on which the petition is filed; or


             59          (iii) a parent of the proposed adoptee resides on the day on which the petition is filed;
             60      or
             61          (c) with the juvenile court as provided in Subsection 78A-6-103 (1).
             62          (2) All orders, decrees, agreements, and notices in the proceedings shall be filed with
             63      the clerk of the court where the adoption proceedings were commenced under Subsection (1).
             64          (3) A petition for adoption:
             65          (a) may be filed before the birth of a child;
             66          [(a)] (b) may be filed before or after the adoptee is placed in the home of the petitioner
             67      for the purpose of adoption; and
             68          [(b)] (c) shall be filed no later than 30 days after the day on which the adoptee is placed
             69      in the home of the petitioners for the purpose of adoption, unless:
             70          (i) the time for filing has been extended by the court; or
             71          (ii) the adoption is arranged by a child-placing agency in which case the agency may
             72      extend the filing time.
             73          (4) (a) If a person whose consent for the adoption is required under Section 78B-6-120
             74      or 78B-6-121 cannot be found within the state, the fact of the minor's presence within the state
             75      shall confer jurisdiction on the court in proceedings under this chapter as to such absent person,
             76      provided that due notice has been given in accordance with the Utah Rules of Civil Procedure.
             77          (b) The notice may not include the name of:
             78          (i) a prospective adoptive parent; or
             79          (ii) an unmarried mother without her consent.
             80          (5) Service of notice as provided in Subsection (6) shall vest the court with jurisdiction
             81      over the person served in the same manner and to the same extent as if the person served was
             82      served personally within the state.
             83          (6) In the case of service outside the state, service completed not less than five days
             84      before the time set in the notice for appearance of the person served shall be sufficient to confer
             85      jurisdiction.
             86          (7) Computation of periods of time not otherwise set forth in this section shall be made
             87      in accordance with the Utah Rules of Civil Procedure.
             88          Section 2. Section 78B-6-110 is amended to read:
             89           78B-6-110. Notice of adoption proceedings.


             90          (1) (a) An unmarried biological father, by virtue of the fact that he has engaged in a
             91      sexual relationship with a woman:
             92          (i) is considered to be on notice that a pregnancy and an adoption proceeding regarding
             93      the child may occur; and
             94          (ii) has a duty to protect his own rights and interests.
             95          (b) An unmarried biological father is entitled to actual notice of a birth or an adoption
             96      proceeding with regard to his child only as provided in this section.
             97          (2) Notice of an adoption proceeding shall be served on each of the following persons:
             98          (a) any person or agency whose consent or relinquishment is required under Section
             99      78B-6-120 or 78B-6-121 , unless that right has been terminated by:
             100          (i) waiver;
             101          (ii) relinquishment;
             102          (iii) actual consent, as described in Subsection (12); or
             103          (iv) judicial action;
             104          (b) any person who has initiated a paternity proceeding and filed notice of that action
             105      with the state registrar of vital statistics within the Department of Health, in accordance with
             106      Subsection (3);
             107          (c) any legally appointed custodian or guardian of the adoptee;
             108          (d) the petitioner's spouse, if any, only if the petitioner's spouse has not joined in the
             109      petition;
             110          (e) the adoptee's spouse, if any;
             111          (f) any person who, prior to the time the mother executes her consent for adoption or
             112      relinquishes the child for adoption, is recorded on the birth certificate as the child's father, with
             113      the knowledge and consent of the mother;
             114          (g) a person who is:
             115          (i) openly living in the same household with the child at the time the consent is
             116      executed or relinquishment made; and
             117          (ii) holding himself out to be the child's father; and
             118          (h) any person who is married to the child's mother at the time she executes her consent
             119      to the adoption or relinquishes the child for adoption, unless the court finds that the mother's
             120      spouse is not the child's father under Section 78B-15-607 .


             121          (3) (a) In order to preserve any right to notice, an unmarried biological father shall,
             122      consistent with Subsection (3)(d):
             123          (i) initiate proceedings in a district court of Utah to establish paternity under Title 78B,
             124      Chapter 15, Utah Uniform Parentage Act; and
             125          (ii) file a notice of commencement of the proceedings described in Subsection (3)(a)(i)
             126      with the office of vital statistics within the Department of Health.
             127          (b) If the unmarried, biological father does not know the county in which the birth
             128      mother resides, he may initiate his action in any county, subject to a change in trial pursuant to
             129      Section 78B-3-307 .
             130          (c) The Department of Health shall provide forms for the purpose of filing the notice
             131      described in Subsection (3)(a)(ii), and make those forms available in the office of the county
             132      health department in each county.
             133          (d) When the state registrar of vital statistics receives a completed form, the registrar
             134      shall:
             135          (i) record the date and time the form was received; and
             136          (ii) immediately enter the information provided by the unmarried biological father in
             137      the confidential registry established by Subsection 78B-6-121 (3)(c).
             138          [(d)] (e) The action and notice described in Subsection (3)(a):
             139          (i) may be filed before or after the child's birth; and
             140          (ii) shall be filed prior to the mother's:
             141          (A) execution of consent to adoption of the child; or
             142          (B) relinquishment of the child for adoption.
             143          (4) Notice provided in accordance with this section need not disclose the name of the
             144      mother of the child who is the subject of an adoption proceeding.
             145          (5) The notice required by this section:
             146          (a) may be served at any time after the petition for adoption is filed, but may not be
             147      served on a birth mother before she has given birth to the child who is the subject of the
             148      petition for adoption;
             149          (b) shall be served at least 30 days prior to the final dispositional hearing;
             150          (c) shall specifically state that the person served shall fulfill the requirements of
             151      Subsection (6)(a), within 30 days after the day on which the person receives service if the


             152      person intends to intervene in or contest the adoption;
             153          (d) shall state the consequences, described in Subsection (6)(b), for failure of a person
             154      to file a motion for relief within 30 days after the day on which the person is served with notice
             155      of an adoption proceeding;
             156          (e) is not required to include, nor be accompanied by, a summons or a copy of the
             157      petition for adoption; and
             158          (f) shall state where the person may obtain a copy of the petition for adoption.
             159          (6) (a) A person who has been served with notice of an adoption proceeding and who
             160      wishes to contest the adoption shall file a motion to intervene in the adoption proceeding:
             161          (i) within 30 days after the day on which the person was served with notice of the
             162      adoption proceeding;
             163          (ii) setting forth specific relief sought; and
             164          (iii) accompanied by a memorandum specifying the factual and legal grounds upon
             165      which the motion is based.
             166          (b) A person who fails to fully and strictly comply with all of the requirements
             167      described in Subsection (6)(a) within 30 days after the day on which the person was served
             168      with notice of the adoption proceeding:
             169          (i) waives any right to further notice in connection with the adoption;
             170          (ii) forfeits all rights in relation to the adoptee; and
             171          (iii) is barred from thereafter bringing or maintaining any action to assert any interest in
             172      the adoptee.
             173          (7) Service of notice under this section shall be made as follows:
             174          (a) (i) Subject to Subsection (5)(e), service on a person whose consent is necessary
             175      under Section 78B-6-120 or 78B-6-121 shall be in accordance with the provisions of the Utah
             176      Rules of Civil Procedure.
             177          (ii) If service of a person described in Subsection (7)(a)(i) is by publication, the court
             178      shall designate the content of the notice regarding the identity of the parties.
             179          (iii) The notice described in this Subsection (7)(a) may not include the name of a
             180      person seeking to adopt the adoptee.
             181          (b) (i) Except as provided in Subsection (7)(b)(ii) to any other person for whom notice
             182      is required under this section, service by certified mail, return receipt requested, is sufficient.


             183          (ii) If the service described in Subsection (7)(b)(i) cannot be completed after two
             184      attempts, the court may issue an order providing for service by publication, posting, or by any
             185      other manner of service.
             186          (c) Notice to a person who has initiated a paternity proceeding and filed notice of that
             187      action with the state registrar of vital statistics in the Department of Health in accordance with
             188      the requirements of Subsection (3), shall be served by certified mail, return receipt requested, at
             189      the last address filed with the registrar.
             190          (8) The notice required by this section may be waived in writing by the person entitled
             191      to receive notice.
             192          (9) Proof of service of notice on all persons for whom notice is required by this section
             193      shall be filed with the court before the final dispositional hearing on the adoption.
             194          (10) Notwithstanding any other provision of law, neither the notice of an adoption
             195      proceeding nor any process in that proceeding is required to contain the name of the person or
             196      persons seeking to adopt the adoptee.
             197          (11) Except as to those persons whose consent to an adoption is required under Section
             198      78B-6-120 or 78B-6-121 , the sole purpose of notice under this section is to enable the person
             199      served to:
             200          (a) intervene in the adoption; and
             201          (b) present evidence to the court relevant to the best interest of the child.
             202          (12) In order to be excused from the requirement to provide notice as described in
             203      Subsection (2)(a) on the grounds that the person has provided consent to the adoption
             204      proceeding under Subsection (2)(a)(iii), the consent may not be implied consent, as described
             205      in Section 78B-6-120.1 .
             206          Section 3. Section 78B-6-120 is amended to read:
             207           78B-6-120. Necessary consent to adoption or relinquishment for adoption.
             208          (1) Except as provided in Subsection (2), consent to adoption of a child, or
             209      relinquishment of a child for adoption, is required from:
             210          (a) the adoptee, if the adoptee is more than 12 years of age, unless the adoptee does not
             211      have the mental capacity to consent;
             212          (b) a man who:
             213          (i) by operation of law under Section 78B-15-204 , is recognized as the father of the


             214      proposed adoptee, unless:
             215          (A) the presumption is rebutted under Section 78B-15-607 ; or
             216          (B) the man was not married to the mother of the proposed adoptee until after the
             217      mother consented to adoption, or relinquishment for adoption, of the proposed adoptee; or
             218          (ii) is the father of the adoptee by a previous legal adoption;
             219          (c) the mother of the adoptee;
             220          (d) a biological parent who has been adjudicated to be the child's biological father by a
             221      court of competent jurisdiction prior to the mother's execution of consent to adoption or her
             222      relinquishment of the child for adoption;
             223          (e) consistent with Subsection (3), a biological parent who has executed and filed a
             224      voluntary declaration of paternity with the state registrar of vital statistics within the
             225      Department of Health in accordance with Title 78B, Chapter 15, Utah Uniform Parentage Act,
             226      prior to the mother's execution of consent to adoption or her relinquishment of the child for
             227      adoption;
             228          (f) an unmarried biological father, of an adoptee, whose consent is not required under
             229      Subsection (1)(d) or (1)(e), only if he fully and strictly complies with the requirements of
             230      Sections 78B-6-121 and 78B-6-122 ; and
             231          (g) the person or agency to whom an adoptee has been relinquished and that is placing
             232      the child for adoption.
             233          (2) (a) The consent of a person described in Subsections (1)(b) through (g) is not
             234      required if the adoptee is 18 years of age or older.
             235          (b) The consent of a person described in Subsections (1)(b) through (f) is not required
             236      if the person's parental rights relating to the adoptee have been terminated.
             237          (3) For purposes of Subsection (1)(e), a voluntary declaration of paternity is considered
             238      filed when it is entered into a database that:
             239          (a) can be accessed by the Department of Health; and
             240          (b) is designated by the state registrar of vital statistics as the official database for
             241      voluntary declarations of paternity.
             242          Section 4. Section 78B-6-120.1 is enacted to read:
             243          78B-6-120.1. Implied consent.
             244          (1) (a) As used in this section, "abandonment" means failure of a father, with


             245      reasonable knowledge of the pregnancy, to offer and provide financial and emotional support to
             246      the birth mother for a period of six months before the day on which the adoptee is born.
             247          (b) A court shall not determine that a father abandoned the birth mother if the father
             248      failed to provide financial or emotional support because the birth mother refused to accept
             249      support.
             250          (2) Consent or relinquishment, as required by Subsection 78B-6-120 (1), may be
             251      implied by any of the following acts:
             252          (a) abandonment;
             253          (b) leaving the adoptee without knowledge of the parent's whereabouts for 30
             254      consecutive days;
             255          (c) knowingly leaving the adoptee with another person, without providing for support,
             256      communicating, or otherwise maintaining a substantial relationship with the adoptee, for six
             257      consecutive months; or
             258          (d) receiving notification of a pending adoption proceeding under Subsection
             259      78B-6-110 (6) or of a termination proceeding under Section 78B-6-112 and failing to respond
             260      as required.
             261          (3) Implied consent under Subsection (2)(a) may not be withdrawn.
             262          (4) Nothing in this section negates the requirements of Section 78B-6-121 or
             263      78B-6-122 for an unmarried biological father.
             264          Section 5. Section 78B-6-121 is amended to read:
             265           78B-6-121. Consent of unmarried biological father.
             266          (1) Except as provided in Subsections (2)(a) and 78B-6-122 (1), and subject to
             267      Subsection (5), with regard to a child who is placed with prospective adoptive parents more
             268      than six months after birth, consent of an unmarried biological father is not required unless the
             269      unmarried biological father:
             270          (a) (i) developed a substantial relationship with the child by:
             271          (A) visiting the child monthly, unless the unmarried biological father was physically or
             272      financially unable to visit the child on a monthly basis; or
             273          (B) engaging in regular communication with the child or with the person or authorized
             274      agency that has lawful custody of the child;
             275          (ii) took some measure of responsibility for the child and the child's future; and


             276          (iii) demonstrated a full commitment to the responsibilities of parenthood by financial
             277      support of the child of a fair and reasonable sum in accordance with the father's ability; or
             278          (b) (i) openly lived with the child:
             279          (A) (I) for a period of at least six months during the one-year period immediately
             280      preceding the day on which the child is placed with prospective adoptive parents; or
             281          (II) if the child is less than one year old, for a period of at least six months during the
             282      period of time beginning on the day on which the child is born and ending on the day on which
             283      the child is placed with prospective adoptive parents; and
             284          (B) immediately preceding placement of the child with prospective adoptive parents;
             285      and
             286          (ii) openly held himself out to be the father of the child during the six-month period
             287      described in Subsection (1)(b)(i)(A).
             288          (2) (a) If an unmarried biological father was prevented from complying with a
             289      requirement of Subsection (1) by the person or authorized agency having lawful custody of the
             290      child, the unmarried biological father is not required to comply with that requirement.
             291          (b) The subjective intent of an unmarried biological father, whether expressed or
             292      otherwise, that is unsupported by evidence that the requirements in Subsection (1) have been
             293      met, shall not preclude a determination that the father failed to meet the requirements of
             294      Subsection (1).
             295          (3) Except as provided in Subsections (6) and 78B-6-122 (1), and subject to Subsection
             296      (5), with regard to a child who is six months of age or less at the time the child is placed with
             297      prospective adoptive parents, consent of an unmarried biological father is not required unless,
             298      prior to the time the mother executes her consent for adoption or relinquishes the child for
             299      adoption, the unmarried biological father:
             300          (a) initiates proceedings in a district court of Utah to establish paternity under Title
             301      78B, Chapter 15, Utah Uniform Parentage Act;
             302          (b) files with the court that is presiding over the paternity proceeding a sworn affidavit:
             303          (i) stating that he is fully able and willing to have full custody of the child;
             304          (ii) setting forth his plans for care of the child; and
             305          (iii) agreeing to a court order of child support and the payment of expenses incurred in
             306      connection with the mother's pregnancy and the child's birth;


             307          (c) consistent with Subsection (4), files notice of the commencement of paternity
             308      proceedings, described in Subsection (3)(a), with the state registrar of vital statistics within the
             309      Department of Health, in a confidential registry established by the department for that purpose;
             310      and
             311          (d) offered to pay and paid, during the pregnancy and after the child's birth, a fair and
             312      reasonable amount of the expenses incurred in connection with the mother's pregnancy and the
             313      child's birth, in accordance with his financial ability, unless:
             314          (i) he did not have actual knowledge of the pregnancy;
             315          (ii) he was prevented from paying the expenses by the person or authorized agency
             316      having lawful custody of the child; or
             317          (iii) the mother refuses to accept the unmarried biological father's offer to pay the
             318      expenses described in this Subsection (3)(d).
             319          (4) The notice described in Subsection (3)(c) is considered filed when [it is entered into
             320      the registry described in Subsection (3)(c)] received by the state registrar of vital statistics.
             321          (5) Unless his ability to assert the right to consent has been lost for failure to comply
             322      with Section 78B-6-110.1 , or lost under another provision of Utah law, an unmarried biological
             323      father shall have at least one business day after the child's birth to fully and strictly comply with
             324      the requirements of Subsection (3).
             325          (6) Consent of an unmarried biological father is not required under this section if:
             326          (a) the court determines, in accordance with the requirements and procedures of Title
             327      78A, Chapter 6, Part 5, Termination of Parental Rights Act, that the unmarried biological
             328      father's rights should be terminated, based on the petition of any interested party;
             329          (b) (i) a declaration of paternity declaring the unmarried biological father to be the
             330      father of the child is rescinded under Section 78B-15-306 ; and
             331          (ii) the unmarried biological father fails to comply with Subsection (3) within 10
             332      business days after the day that notice of the rescission described in Subsection (6)(b)(i) is
             333      mailed by the Office of Vital Records within the Department of Health as provided in Section
             334      78B-15-306 ; or
             335          (c) the unmarried biological father is notified under Section 78B-6-110.1 and fails to
             336      preserve his rights in accordance with the requirements of that section.
             337          (7) Unless the adoptee is conceived or born within a marriage, the petitioner in an


             338      adoption proceeding shall, prior to entrance of a final decree of adoption, file with the court a
             339      certificate from the state registrar of vital statistics within the Department of Health, stating:
             340          (a) that a diligent search has been made of the registry of notices from unmarried
             341      biological fathers described in Subsection (3)(c); and
             342          (b) (i) that no filing has been found pertaining to the father of the child in question; or
             343          (ii) if a filing is found, the name of the putative father and the time and date of filing.
             344          Section 6. Section 78B-6-128 is amended to read:
             345           78B-6-128. Preplacement adoptive evaluations -- Exceptions.
             346          (1) (a) Except as otherwise provided in this section, a child may not be placed in an
             347      adoptive home until a preplacement adoptive evaluation, assessing the prospective adoptive
             348      parent and the prospective adoptive home, has been conducted in accordance with the
             349      requirements of this section.
             350          (b) Except as provided in Section 78B-6-131 , the court may, at any time, authorize
             351      temporary placement of a child in a potential adoptive home pending completion of a
             352      preplacement adoptive evaluation described in this section.
             353          (c) Subsection (1)(a) does not apply if a pre-existing parent has legal custody of the
             354      child to be adopted and the prospective adoptive parent is related to that child or the
             355      pre-existing parent as a stepparent, sibling by half or whole blood or by adoption, grandparent,
             356      aunt, uncle, or first cousin, unless the evaluation is otherwise requested by the court. The
             357      prospective adoptive parent described in this Subsection (1)(c) shall obtain the information
             358      described in Subsections (2)(a) and (b), and file that documentation with the court prior to
             359      finalization of the adoption.
             360          (d) The required preplacement adoptive evaluation must be completed or updated
             361      within the 12-month period immediately preceding the placement of a child with the
             362      prospective adoptive parent. If the prospective adoptive parent has previously received custody
             363      of a child for the purpose of adoption, the preplacement adoptive evaluation must be completed
             364      or updated within the 12-month period immediately preceding the placement of a child with the
             365      prospective adoptive parent and after the placement of the previous child with the prospective
             366      adoptive parent.
             367          (2) The preplacement adoptive evaluation shall include:
             368          (a) criminal history record information regarding each prospective adoptive parent and


             369      any other adult living in the prospective home, prepared no earlier than 18 months immediately
             370      preceding placement of the child in accordance with the following:
             371          (i) if the child is in state custody, each prospective adoptive parent and any other adult
             372      living in the prospective home shall:
             373          (A) submit fingerprints for a Federal Bureau of Investigation national criminal history
             374      record check through the Criminal and Technical Services Division of the Department of
             375      Public Safety in accordance with the provisions of Section 62A-2-120 ; or
             376          (B) submit to a fingerprint based Federal Bureau of Investigation national criminal
             377      history record check through a law enforcement agency in another state, district, or territory of
             378      the United States; or
             379          (ii) subject to Subsection (3), if the child is not in state custody, each prospective
             380      adoptive parent and any other adult living in the prospective home shall:
             381          (A) submit fingerprints for a Federal Bureau of Investigation national criminal history
             382      records check as a personal records check; or
             383          (B) complete a criminal records check, if available, for each state and country where
             384      the prospective adoptive parent and any adult living in the prospective adoptive home resided
             385      during the five years immediately preceding the day on which the adoption petition is to be
             386      finalized;
             387          (b) a report containing all information regarding reports and investigations of child
             388      abuse, neglect, and dependency, with respect to each prospective adoptive parent and any other
             389      adult living in the prospective home, obtained no earlier than 18 months immediately preceding
             390      the day on which the child is placed in the prospective home, pursuant to waivers executed by
             391      each prospective adoptive parent and any other adult living in the prospective home, that:
             392          (i) if the prospective adoptive parent or the adult living in the prospective adoptive
             393      parent's home is a resident of Utah, is prepared by the Department of Human Services from the
             394      records of the Department of Human Services; or
             395          (ii) if the prospective adoptive parent or the adult living in the prospective adoptive
             396      parent's home is not a resident of Utah, prepared by the Department of Human Services, or a
             397      similar agency in another state, district, or territory of the United States, where each
             398      prospective adoptive parent and any other adult living in the prospective home resided in the
             399      five years immediately preceding the day on which the child is placed in the prospective


             400      adoptive home;
             401          (c) in accordance with Subsection (6), an evaluation conducted by:
             402          (i) an expert in family relations approved by the court;
             403          (ii) a certified social worker;
             404          (iii) a clinical social worker;
             405          (iv) a marriage and family therapist;
             406          (v) a psychologist;
             407          (vi) a social service worker, if supervised by a certified or clinical social worker; or
             408          (vii) a professional counselor; and
             409          (d) in accordance with Subsection (7), if the child to be adopted is a child who is in the
             410      custody of any public child welfare agency, and is a child who has a special need as defined in
             411      Section 62A-4a-902 , the preplacement evaluation shall be conducted by the Department of
             412      Human Services or a child-placing agency that has entered into a contract with the department
             413      to conduct the preplacement evaluations for children with special needs.
             414          (3) For purposes of Subsection (2)(a)(ii):
             415          (a) if the adoption is being handled by a human services program, as defined in Section
             416      62A-2-101 :
             417          (i) the criminal history check described in Subsection (2)(a)(ii)(A) shall be submitted
             418      through the Criminal Investigations and Technical Services Division of the Department of
             419      Public Safety, in accordance with the provisions of Section 62A-2-120 ; and
             420          (ii) subject to Subsection (4), the criminal history check described in Subsection
             421      (2)(a)(ii)(B) shall be submitted in a manner acceptable to the court that will:
             422          (A) preserve the chain of custody of the results; and
             423          (B) not permit tampering with the results by a prospective adoptive parent or other
             424      interested party; and
             425          (b) if the adoption is being handled by a private attorney, and not a human services
             426      program, the criminal history checks described in Subsection (2)(a)(ii) shall be:
             427          (i) submitted in accordance with procedures established by the Criminal Investigations
             428      and Technical Services Division of the Department of Public Safety; or
             429          (ii) subject to Subsection (4), submitted in a manner acceptable to the court that will:
             430          (A) preserve the chain of custody of the results; and


             431          (B) not permit tampering with the results by a prospective adoptive parent or other
             432      interested party.
             433          (4) In order to comply with Subsection (3)(a)(ii) or (b)(ii), the manner in which the
             434      criminal history check is submitted shall be approved by the court.
             435          (5) Except as provided in Subsection 78B-6-131 (2), in addition to the other
             436      requirements of this section, before a child in state custody is placed with a prospective foster
             437      parent or a prospective adoptive parent, the Department of Human Services shall comply with
             438      Section 78B-6-131 .
             439          (6) (a) A person described in Subsection (2)(c) shall be licensed to practice under the
             440      laws of:
             441          (i) this state; or
             442          (ii) the state, district, or territory of the United States where the prospective adoptive
             443      parent or other person living in the prospective adoptive home resides.
             444          (b) The evaluation described in Subsection (2)(c) shall be in a form approved by the
             445      Department of Human Services.
             446          (c) Neither the Department of Human Services nor any of its divisions may proscribe
             447      who qualifies as an expert in family relations or who may conduct evaluations under
             448      Subsection (2)(c).
             449          (7) Any fee assessed by the evaluating agency described in Subsection (2)(d) is the
             450      responsibility of the adopting parent or parents.
             451          (8) The person or agency conducting the preplacement adoptive evaluation shall, in
             452      connection with the evaluation, provide the prospective adoptive parent or parents with
             453      literature approved by the Division of Child and Family Services relating to adoption, including
             454      information relating to:
             455          (a) the adoption process;
             456          (b) developmental issues that may require early intervention; and
             457          (c) community resources that are available to the prospective adoptive parent or
             458      parents.
             459          (9) A copy of the preplacement adoptive evaluation shall be filed with the court.
             460          Section 7. Section 78B-6-134 is amended to read:
             461           78B-6-134. Custody pending final decree.


             462          (1) (a) A licensed child placing adoption agency, or a petitioner if the petition for
             463      adoption is filed before a child's birth, may seek an order establishing that the agency or
             464      petitioner shall have temporary custody of the child from the time of birth.
             465          (b) The court shall grant an order for temporary custody under Subsection (1)(a) upon
             466      determining that:
             467          (i) the birth mother or both birth parents consent to the order;
             468          (ii) the agency or petitioner is willing and able to take custody of the child; and
             469          (iii) an order will be in the best interest of the child.
             470          (c) The court shall vacate an order if, prior to the child's birth, the birth mother or birth
             471      parents withdraw their consent.
             472          [(1)] (2) Except as otherwise provided by the court, once a petitioner has received the
             473      adoptee into his home and a petition for adoption has been filed, the petitioner is entitled to the
             474      custody and control of the adoptee and is responsible for the care, maintenance, and support of
             475      the adoptee, including any necessary medical or surgical treatment, pending further order of the
             476      court.
             477          [(2)] (3) Once a child has been placed with, relinquished to, or ordered into the custody
             478      of a child-placing agency for purposes of adoption, the agency shall have custody and control
             479      of the child and is responsible for his care, maintenance, and support. The agency may
             480      delegate the responsibility for care, maintenance, and support, including any necessary medical
             481      or surgical treatment, to the petitioner once the petitioner has received the child into his home.
             482      However, until the final decree of adoption is entered by the court, the agency has the right to
             483      the custody and control of the child.




Legislative Review Note
    as of 2-20-13 7:00 PM


Office of Legislative Research and General Counsel


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