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Policy Manual

 

Manual:

CP&P

Child Protection and Permanency

Effective Date: 10.12.2004

Volume:

IV

Out of Home Placement

Chapter:

B

Resource Care

Revised Date:  6.8.2020

Subchapter:

2

Home Study and Licensing

Issuance:

300

Waivers

 

Purpose:

 

A waiver is a mechanism for approving a new or existing licensed resource family which would otherwise be denied due to a criminal conviction or a child abuse/neglect substantiation.

 

Authority:

 

·         N.J.S.A. 30:4C-26.8d

·         N.J.S.A. 30:4C-26.8e

 

Policy:

 

A)   Waiver and Licensing

1.    Once the appropriate CP&P Local Office Manager (LOM) or Area Director approves the waiver for a resource family, it is necessary to submit the waiver to the Department of Children and Families (DCF) Office of Licensing to make a final decision on issuing the license.

2.    A waiver is not needed for:

a.                An arrest without a conviction.

b.                CP&P history without substantiation.

3.    A Resource Family Support Worker (RFSW) and Supervisor review and shall consider these incidents on a case-by-case basis utilizing regular casework decision making protocols to support the best interest of any children entering placement.

4.    Although a waiver is not required in these instances, workers shall have a conference with their supervisors to ensure a comprehensive assessment is made as to whether the placement would be in the best interest of the child. 

B)   Waiver Format and Time Frames

1.    Use  CP&P Form 17-1, Waiver Request, to request a waiver.

2.    The RFSW is responsible for completing and submitting CP&P Form 17-1, Waiver Request.

3.    The time frames for processing complete and accurate waivers are as follows:

a.                Twenty-eight (28) business days - A waiver requiring the approval of the LOM, the CP&P Area Director and the DCF Director, Office of Licensing.

b.                Twenty-one (21) business days - A waiver requiring the approval of only the LOM and the DCF, Director, Office of Licensing.

c.                Note:  Information missing from the waiver packet will delay these time frames.

C)   Waiver of Criminal Conviction - Criminal History Record Information (CHRI)

1.    Guidelines for requesting a criminal conviction waiver.

a.                Ineligible - automatic disqualifiers - no waivers:

                                                      i.        An Adoption and Safe Families Act (ASFA) crime outlined in N.J.S.A. 30:4C-26.8d.

                                                    ii.        An ASFA crime outlined in N.J.S.A. 30:4C-26.8e for which five (5) years has not passed since the applicant was terminated from probation or parole, or was released without probation or parole from a correctional facility

                                                   iii.        NOTE:  Five-year disqualification means the person or any adult residing in their household was released from confinement during the past five (5) years. The date of release from confinement means the date of termination of court-order supervision through probation, parole, or residence in a correctional facility, whichever date occurs last. See, ASFA Crime index on the CP&P Intranet.

b.                Waivers eligible for consideration with appropriate approval:

                                                      i.        Five (5) Year ASFA Disqualifying Crime - An ASFA crime outlined in N.J.S.A. 30:4C-26.8e for which more than five (5) years have passed since the applicant was terminated from probation or parole, or was released without probation or parole from a correctional facility.

D)   Waiver of Child Abuse/Neglect Substantiation - Child Abuse Record Information (CARI)

1.     Guidelines

a.                A waiver for a child abuse/neglect Substantiation is limited to a resource family for whom there are strong indications that approving or continuing to use the family would be in the best interest of the child.  Only the CP&P Area Director and the LOM are permitted to approve a child abuse/neglect Substantiation waiver.

b.                A waiver is limited to the following situations:

                                                      i.        There is an established kin or fictive kin connection between the child and the present or proposed caregiver.

                                                    ii.        The child is already in the home.

                                                   iii.        There is a positive psychological or emotional relationship between the child or the child's parent and the present or proposed caregiver.

c.                A waiver is not required for a child abuse/neglect finding of Established, Not Established, Unfounded or Not Substantiated.  However, a full record review, an appropriate casework decision, and documenting the decision in the case record are required.

d.                Note:  "Not Substantiated" was eliminated as a CP&P finding determination for all CPS reports received on or after April 1, 2005.  "Established" and "Not Established" were adopted as DCF investigation findings effective April 1, 2013.

E)   Waiver Approval Authority

1.    Each DCF/CP&P representative listed below shall approve the following types of waivers:

a.                Five (5) Year ASFA Disqualifying Crime (ASFA crime beyond five (5) years):

                                                      i.        LOM

                                                    ii.        CP&P Area Director

                                                   iii.        DCF Director, Office of Licensing

b.                Child abuse/neglect substantiation:

                                                      i.        LOM

                                                    ii.        CP&P Area Director

                                                   iii.        DCF Director, Office of Licensing

 

 

 

 

Procedures:

 

1)    Waiver Process - Child Already In The Home           

a.    RFSW and Supervisor

                                         i.    Case conference - When the child is already in the home, and a condition requiring a waiver is identified, hold a case conference within one (1) business day of learning of the condition.

                                        ii.    Purpose of conference - To discuss the feasibility of continuing the placement and to determine whether or not to seek a waiver and discuss the impact of the conviction on the family.

b.    RFSW

                                         i.    Support for waiver - By seeking a waiver, you are indicating your support for the waiver.

                                        ii.    Active CPS investigation - In a case where the Institutional Abuse Investigation Unit (IAIU) is investigating the resource family for a child abuse/neglect allegation, obtain the IAIU Eight Day Report for collateral resource information.

2)    Procedures For Obtaining a Waiver

a.    RFSW

                                          i.    Identify a condition in which a waiver request is needed for a resource family.

b.    RFSW and Supervisor

                                          i.    Hold a case conference to discuss the circumstances of the waiver.

c.    RFSW   

                                          i.    Review the resource family home record and any additional materials as appropriate to prepare the waiver.

                                        ii.    Prepare the CP&P Form 17-1, Waiver Request; attach the appropriate documentation; and submit the packet within seven business days to the LOM.

d.    LOM

                                          i.    Review and sign the CP&P Form 17-1, Waiver Request, within seven (7) business days and ensure copies are sent to the Supervisor and Casework Supervisor.

                                        ii.    Submit the signed CP&P Form 17-1, Waiver Request, packet to the:

1.    CP&P Area Director - if the waiver is for a five (5) Year ASFA Disqualifying Crime or a child abuse/neglect substantiation.

2.    DCF Director, Office of Licensing - if the waiver is for one or more of the other criminal convictions.

e.    CP&P Area Director

                                          i.    Review and sign the CP&P Form 17-1, Waiver Request, packet for a waiver of a Five (5) Year ASFA Disqualifying Crime or a child abuse/neglect substantiation.

                                        ii.    Forward the signed CP&P Form 17-1, Waiver Request, packet within seven (7) business days to the DCF Director, Office of Licensing.

f.     DCF Director, Office of Licensing

                                          i.    Review the CP&P Form 17-1, Waiver Request, packet.

                                        ii.    Make a final decision on issuing the license to the resource family within seven business days and advise the CP&P LOM, as appropriate.

 

Key Terms (Definitions):

 

·         Resource family home includes:

o   Restricted/Regular/Emergency Foster Care

o   Adoptive

o   Relative/Family Friend Care

 

Forms and Attachments:

 

·         CP&P Form 17-1, Waiver Request

 

Policy History:

 

·         6.8.2020

·         4.1.2013

·         1.29.2007

·         1.23.2006

·         10.12.2004