Chief Sponsor: Patrice M. Arent

Senate Sponsor: Scott D. Sandall

6     Cosponsors:
7     Cheryl K. Acton
8     Carl R. Albrecht
9     Melissa G. Ballard
10     Stewart E. Barlow
11     Brady Brammer
12     Joel K. Briscoe
13     Walt Brooks
14     Steve R. Christiansen
15     Kay J. Christofferson
16     Kim F. Coleman
17     Jennifer Dailey-Provost
18     Brad M. Daw
19     Susan Duckworth
20     Steve Eliason
21     Craig Hall
22     Stephen G. Handy
23     Suzanne Harrison
Sandra Hollins
Eric K. Hutchings
Dan N. Johnson
Marsha Judkins
Brian S. King
Karen Kwan
Kelly B. Miles
Carol Spackman Moss
Calvin R. Musselman
Merrill F. Nelson
Lee B. Perry
Candice B. Pierucci
Stephanie Pitcher
Val K. Potter
Marie H. Poulson
Susan Pulsipher
Paul Ray
Adam Robertson
Angela Romero
Douglas V. Sagers
Rex P. Shipp
Lawanna Shurtliff
V. Lowry Snow
Robert M. Spendlove
Jeffrey D. Stenquist
Andrew Stoddard
Keven J. Stratton
Steve Waldrip
Raymond P. Ward
Christine F. Watkins
Elizabeth Weight
Mark A. Wheatley
Mike Winder


26     General Description:
27          This bill modifies provisions relating to the safe relinquishment of a newborn child.

28     Highlighted Provisions:
29          This bill:
30          ▸     modifies the definition of "newborn child";
31          ▸     subject to certain requirements, allows a parent or the parent's designee to safely
32     relinquish a newborn child within 30 days after the day on which the child is born;
33          ▸     clarifies the type of information that must be provided to the Division of Child and
34     Family Services upon safe relinquishment of a newborn child;
35          ▸     clarifies provisions relating to searches for a potential father of a newborn child who
36     is safely relinquished and notice that must be provided to the potential father;
37          ▸     requires the Department of Health to make rules relating to the resolution of
38     conflicting birth and foundling certificates; and
39          ▸     makes technical changes.
40     Money Appropriated in this Bill:
41          This bill appropriates in fiscal year 2021:
42          ▸     to Department of Health -- Family Health and Preparedness, as an ongoing
43     appropriation:
44               •     from General Fund, $50,000.
45     Other Special Clauses:
46          None
47     Utah Code Sections Affected:
48     AMENDS:
49          26-2-7, as last amended by Laws of Utah 1995, Chapter 202
50          62A-4a-801, as enacted by Laws of Utah 2001, Chapter 134
51          62A-4a-802, as last amended by Laws of Utah 2008, Chapters 3 and 299

53     Be it enacted by the Legislature of the state of Utah:
54          Section 1. Section 26-2-7 is amended to read:

55          26-2-7. Correction of errors or omissions in vital records -- Conflicting birth and
56     foundling certificates -- Rulemaking.
57          [The] In accordance with Title 63G, Chapter 3, Utah Administrative Rulemaking Act,
58     the department may make rules:
59          (1) governing applications to correct alleged errors or omissions on any vital record[.];
60     and
61          (2) establishing procedures to resolve conflicting birth and foundling certificates.
62          Section 2. Section 62A-4a-801 is amended to read:
63          62A-4a-801. Definitions.
64          As used in this part:
65          (1) "Hospital" means a general acute hospital, as that term is defined in Section
66     26-21-2, that is:
67          (a) equipped with an emergency room;
68          (b) open 24 hours a day, seven days a week; and
69          (c) employs full-time health care professionals who have emergency medical services
70     training.
71          (2) "Newborn child" means a child who is approximately [72 hours] 30 days of age or
72     younger, as determined within a reasonable degree of medical certainty.
73          Section 3. Section 62A-4a-802 is amended to read:
74          62A-4a-802. Safe relinquishment of a newborn child.
75          (1) (a) A parent or a parent's designee may safely relinquish a newborn child at a
76     hospital in accordance with the provisions of this part and retain complete anonymity, so long
77     as the newborn child has not been subject to abuse or neglect.
78          (b) Safe relinquishment of a newborn child who has not otherwise been subject to
79     abuse or neglect shall not, in and of itself, constitute neglect as defined in Section 78A-6-105,
80     and the newborn child shall not be considered a neglected child, as defined in Section
81     78A-6-105, so long as the relinquishment is carried out in substantial compliance with the

82     provisions of this part.
83          (2) (a) Personnel employed by a hospital shall accept a newborn child [that] who is
84     relinquished pursuant to the provisions of this part, and may presume that the [person]
85     individual relinquishing is the newborn child's parent or the parent's designee.
86          (b) The person receiving the newborn child may request information regarding the
87     parent and newborn child's medical histories, and identifying information regarding the
88     nonrelinquishing parent of the newborn child.
89          [(c) The division shall provide hospitals with medical history forms and stamped
90     envelopes addressed to the division that a hospital may provide to a person relinquishing a
91     child pursuant to the provisions of this part.]
92          (c) If the newborn child's parent or the parent's designee provides the person receiving
93     the newborn child with any of the information described in Subsection (2)(b) or any other
94     personal items, the person shall provide the information or personal items to the division.
95          (d) Personnel employed by [a] the hospital shall:
96          (i) provide any necessary medical care to the newborn child [and];
97          (ii) notify the division of receipt of the newborn child as soon as possible, but no later
98     than 24 hours after receipt of the newborn child; and
99          [(ii)] (iii) prepare a birth certificate or foundling birth certificate if parentage is
100     unknown for the newborn child and file the certificate with the Office of Vital Records and
101     Statistics within the Department of Health.
102          (e) A hospital and personnel employed by a hospital are immune from any civil or
103     criminal liability arising from accepting a newborn child if the personnel employed by the
104     hospital substantially comply with the provisions of this part and medical treatment is
105     administered according to standard medical practice.
106          (3) The division shall assume care and custody of the newborn child immediately upon
107     notice from the hospital.
108          (4) So long as the division determines there is no abuse or neglect of the newborn

109     child, neither the newborn child nor the child's parents are subject to:
110          (a) the provisions of Part 2, Child Welfare Services;
111          (b) the investigation provisions contained in Section 62A-4a-409; or
112          (c) the provisions of Title 78A, Chapter 6, Part 3, Abuse, Neglect, and Dependency
113     Proceedings.
114          (5) (a) Unless identifying information relating to the nonrelinquishing parent of the
115     newborn child has been provided, the division shall:
116          [(a)] (i) [the division shall] work with local law enforcement and the Bureau of
117     Criminal Identification within the Department of Public Safety in an effort to ensure that the
118     newborn child has not been identified as a missing child;
119          [(b)] (ii) [the division shall] immediately place or contract for placement of the
120     newborn child in a potential adoptive home and, within 10 days after [receipt of] the day on
121     which the child is received, file a petition for termination of parental rights in accordance with
122     Title 78A, Chapter 6, Part 5, Termination of Parental Rights Act;
123          [(c)] (iii) [the division shall] direct the Office of Vital Records and Statistics within the
124     Department of Health to conduct a search for:
125          (A) a birth certificate for the newborn child; and [an Initiation of Proceedings to
126     Establish Paternity Registry for]
127          (B) unmarried biological fathers in the registry maintained by the Office of Vital
128     Records and Statistics [within the Department of Health] in accordance with Title 78B,
129     Chapter 15, Part 4, Registry; and
130          (iv) provide notice to each potential father identified on the registry[. Notice of
131     termination of parental rights proceedings shall be provided in the same manner as is utilized
132     for any other termination proceeding in which the identity of the child's parents is unknown;]
133     described in Subsection (5)(a)(iii) in accordance with Title 78B, Chapter 15, Part 4, Registry.
134          [(d)] (b) (i) [if no person] If no individual has affirmatively identified himself or herself
135     within two weeks after the day on which notice under Subsection (5)(a)(iv) is complete and

136     established paternity by scientific testing within as expeditious a time frame as practicable, a
137     hearing on the petition for termination of parental rights shall be scheduled[; and] and notice
138     provided in accordance with Title 78A, Chapter 6, Part 5, Termination of Parental Rights.
139          [(e)] (ii) [if] If a nonrelinquishing parent is not identified, relinquishment of a newborn
140     child pursuant to the provisions of this part shall be considered grounds for termination of
141     parental rights of both the relinquishing and nonrelinquishing parents under Section
142     78A-6-507.
143          (6) If at any time prior to the adoption, a court finds it is in the best interest of the
144     newborn child, the court shall deny the petition for termination of parental rights.
145          (7) The division shall provide for, or contract with a licensed child-placing agency to
146     provide for expeditious adoption of the newborn child.
147          (8) So long as the [person] individual relinquishing a newborn child is the newborn
148     child's parent or designee, and there is no abuse or neglect, safe relinquishment of a newborn
149     child in substantial compliance with the provisions of this part is an affirmative defense to any
150     potential criminal liability for abandonment or neglect relating to that relinquishment.
151          Section 4. Appropriation.
152          The following sums of money are appropriated for the fiscal year beginning on July 1,
153     2020, and ending June 30, 2021. These are additions to amounts previously appropriated for
154     fiscal year 2021. Under the terms and conditions of Title 63J, Chapter 1, Budgetary Procedures
155     Act, the Legislature appropriates the following sums of money from the funds or accounts
156     indicated for the use and support of the government of the state of Utah.
157     ITEM 1
158          To Department of Health -- Family Health and Preparedness
159               From General Fund

160               Schedule of Programs:
161                    Maternal and Child Health               $50,000
162          The Legislature intends that the appropriations under this item be used for training and

163     education about the availability and requirements of the safe relinquishment of a newborn child
164     program described in Title 62A, Chapter 4a, Part 8, Safe Relinquishment of a Newborn Child.