7 LONG TITLE
8 General Description:
9 This bill modifies provisions relating to the safe relinquishment of a newborn child.
10 Highlighted Provisions:
11 This bill:
12 ▸ modifies the definition of "newborn child";
13 ▸ subject to certain requirements, allows a parent or the parent's designee to safely
14 relinquish a newborn child within 30 days after the day on which the child is born;
15 ▸ clarifies the type of information that must be provided to the Division of Child and
16 Family Services upon safe relinquishment of a newborn child;
17 ▸ clarifies provisions relating to searches for a potential father of a newborn child who
18 is safely relinquished and notice that must be provided to the potential father;
19 ▸ requires the Department of Health to make rules relating to the resolution of
20 conflicting birth and foundling certificates; and
21 ▸ makes technical changes.
22 Money Appropriated in this Bill:
23 This bill appropriates in fiscal year 2021:
24 ▸ to Department of Health -- Family Health and Preparedness, as an ongoing
26 • from General Fund, $50,000.
27 Other Special Clauses:
29 Utah Code Sections Affected:
31 26-2-7, as last amended by Laws of Utah 1995, Chapter 202
32 62A-4a-801, as enacted by Laws of Utah 2001, Chapter 134
33 62A-4a-802, as last amended by Laws of Utah 2008, Chapters 3 and 299
35 Be it enacted by the Legislature of the state of Utah:
36 Section 1. Section 26-2-7 is amended to read:
37 26-2-7. Correction of errors or omissions in vital records -- Conflicting birth and
38 foundling certificates -- Rulemaking.
40 the department may make rules:
41 (1) governing applications to correct alleged errors or omissions on any vital record[
43 (2) establishing procedures to resolve conflicting birth and foundling certificates.
44 Section 2. Section 62A-4a-801 is amended to read:
45 62A-4a-801. Definitions.
46 As used in this part:
47 (1) "Hospital" means a general acute hospital, as that term is defined in Section
48 26-21-2, that is:
49 (a) equipped with an emergency room;
50 (b) open 24 hours a day, seven days a week; and
51 (c) employs full-time health care professionals who have emergency medical services
53 (2) "Newborn child" means a child who is approximately [
54 younger, as determined within a reasonable degree of medical certainty.
55 Section 3. Section 62A-4a-802 is amended to read:
56 62A-4a-802. Safe relinquishment of a newborn child.
57 (1) (a) A parent or a parent's designee may safely relinquish a newborn child at a
58 hospital in accordance with the provisions of this part and retain complete anonymity, so long
59 as the newborn child has not been subject to abuse or neglect.
60 (b) Safe relinquishment of a newborn child who has not otherwise been subject to
61 abuse or neglect shall not, in and of itself, constitute neglect as defined in Section 78A-6-105,
62 and the newborn child shall not be considered a neglected child, as defined in Section
63 78A-6-105, so long as the relinquishment is carried out in substantial compliance with the
64 provisions of this part.
65 (2) (a) Personnel employed by a hospital shall accept a newborn child [
66 relinquished pursuant to the provisions of this part, and may presume that the [
67 individual relinquishing is the newborn child's parent or the parent's designee.
68 (b) The person receiving the newborn child may request information regarding the
69 parent and newborn child's medical histories, and identifying information regarding the
70 nonrelinquishing parent of the newborn child.
74 (c) If the newborn child's parent or the parent's designee provides the person receiving
75 the newborn child with any of the information described in Subsection (2)(b) or any other
76 personal items, the person shall provide the information or personal items to the division.
77 (d) Personnel employed by [
78 (i) provide any necessary medical care to the newborn child [
79 (ii) notify the division of receipt of the newborn child as soon as possible, but no later
80 than 24 hours after receipt of the newborn child; and
82 unknown for the newborn child and file the certificate with the Office of Vital Records and
83 Statistics within the Department of Health.
84 (e) A hospital and personnel employed by a hospital are immune from any civil or
85 criminal liability arising from accepting a newborn child if the personnel employed by the
86 hospital substantially comply with the provisions of this part and medical treatment is
87 administered according to standard medical practice.
88 (3) The division shall assume care and custody of the newborn child immediately upon
89 notice from the hospital.
90 (4) So long as the division determines there is no abuse or neglect of the newborn
91 child, neither the newborn child nor the child's parents are subject to:
92 (a) the provisions of Part 2, Child Welfare Services;
93 (b) the investigation provisions contained in Section 62A-4a-409; or
94 (c) the provisions of Title 78A, Chapter 6, Part 3, Abuse, Neglect, and Dependency
96 (5) (a) Unless identifying information relating to the nonrelinquishing parent of the
97 newborn child has been provided, the division shall:
99 Criminal Identification within the Department of Public Safety in an effort to ensure that the
100 newborn child has not been identified as a missing child;
102 newborn child in a potential adoptive home and, within 10 days after [
103 which the child is received, file a petition for termination of parental rights in accordance with
104 Title 78A, Chapter 6, Part 5, Termination of Parental Rights Act;
106 Department of Health to conduct a search for:
107 (A) a birth certificate for the newborn child; and [
109 (B) unmarried biological fathers in the registry maintained by the Office of Vital
110 Records and Statistics [
111 Chapter 15, Part 4, Registry; and
112 (iv) provide notice to each potential father identified on the registry[
115 described in Subsection (5)(a)(iii) in accordance with Title 78B, Chapter 15, Part 4, Registry.
117 within two weeks after the day on which notice under Subsection (5)(a)(iv) is complete and
118 established paternity by scientific testing within as expeditious a time frame as practicable, a
119 hearing on the petition for termination of parental rights shall be scheduled[
120 provided in accordance with Title 78A, Chapter 6, Part 5, Termination of Parental Rights.
122 child pursuant to the provisions of this part shall be considered grounds for termination of
123 parental rights of both the relinquishing and nonrelinquishing parents under Section
125 (6) If at any time prior to the adoption, a court finds it is in the best interest of the
126 newborn child, the court shall deny the petition for termination of parental rights.
127 (7) The division shall provide for, or contract with a licensed child-placing agency to
128 provide for expeditious adoption of the newborn child.
129 (8) So long as the [
130 child's parent or designee, and there is no abuse or neglect, safe relinquishment of a newborn
131 child in substantial compliance with the provisions of this part is an affirmative defense to any
132 potential criminal liability for abandonment or neglect relating to that relinquishment.
133 Section 4. Appropriation.
134 The following sums of money are appropriated for the fiscal year beginning on July 1,
135 2020, and ending June 30, 2021. These are additions to amounts previously appropriated for
136 fiscal year 2021. Under the terms and conditions of Title 63J, Chapter 1, Budgetary Procedures
137 Act, the Legislature appropriates the following sums of money from the funds or accounts
138 indicated for the use and support of the government of the state of Utah.
139 ITEM 1
140 To Department of Health -- Family Health and Preparedness
141 From General Fund
142 Schedule of Programs:
143 Maternal and Child Health $50,000
144 The Legislature intends that the appropriations under this item be used for training and
145 education about the availability and requirements of the safe relinquishment of a newborn child
146 program described in Title 62A, Chapter 4a, Part 8, Safe Relinquishment of a Newborn Child.