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Public Act 102-0193


 

Public Act 0193 102ND GENERAL ASSEMBLY



 


 
Public Act 102-0193
 
HB1068 EnrolledLRB102 03081 LNS 13094 b

    AN ACT concerning courts.
 
    Be it enacted by the People of the State of Illinois,
represented in the General Assembly:
 
    Section 5. The Juvenile Court Act of 1987 is amended by
changing Section 2-28 as follows:
 
    (705 ILCS 405/2-28)  (from Ch. 37, par. 802-28)
    Sec. 2-28. Court review.
    (1) The court may require any legal custodian or guardian
of the person appointed under this Act to report periodically
to the court or may cite him into court and require him or his
agency, to make a full and accurate report of his or its doings
in behalf of the minor. The custodian or guardian, within 10
days after such citation, or earlier if the court determines
it to be necessary to protect the health, safety, or welfare of
the minor, shall make the report, either in writing verified
by affidavit or orally under oath in open court, or otherwise
as the court directs. Upon the hearing of the report the court
may remove the custodian or guardian and appoint another in
his stead or restore the minor to the custody of his parents or
former guardian or custodian. However, custody of the minor
shall not be restored to any parent, guardian or legal
custodian in any case in which the minor is found to be
neglected or abused under Section 2-3 or dependent under
Section 2-4 of this Act, unless the minor can be cared for at
home without endangering the minor's health or safety and it
is in the best interests of the minor, and if such neglect,
abuse, or dependency is found by the court under paragraph (1)
of Section 2-21 of this Act to have come about due to the acts
or omissions or both of such parent, guardian or legal
custodian, until such time as an investigation is made as
provided in paragraph (5) and a hearing is held on the issue of
the fitness of such parent, guardian or legal custodian to
care for the minor and the court enters an order that such
parent, guardian or legal custodian is fit to care for the
minor.
    (1.5) The public agency that is the custodian or guardian
of the minor shall file a written report with the court no
later than 15 days after a minor in the agency's care remains:
        (1) in a shelter placement beyond 30 days;
        (2) in a psychiatric hospital past the time when the
    minor is clinically ready for discharge or beyond medical
    necessity for the minor's health; or
        (3) in a detention center or Department of Juvenile
    Justice facility solely because the public agency cannot
    find an appropriate placement for the minor.
    The report shall explain the steps the agency is taking to
ensure the minor is placed appropriately, how the minor's
needs are being met in the minor's shelter placement, and if a
future placement has been identified by the Department, why
the anticipated placement is appropriate for the needs of the
minor and the anticipated placement date.
    (1.6) Within 35 days after placing a child in its care in a
qualified residential treatment program, as defined by the
federal Social Security Act, the Department of Children and
Family Services shall file a written report with the court and
send copies of the report to all parties. Within 20 days of the
filing of the report, the court shall hold a hearing to
consider the Department's report and determine whether
placement of the child in a qualified residential treatment
program provides the most effective and appropriate level of
care for the child in the least restrictive environment and if
the placement is consistent with the short-term and long-term
goals for the child, as specified in the permanency plan for
the child. The court shall approve or disapprove the
placement. If applicable, the requirements of Sections 2-27.1
and 2-27.2 must also be met. The Department's written report
and the court's written determination shall be included in and
made part of the case plan for the child. If the child remains
placed in a qualified residential treatment program, the
Department shall submit evidence at each status and permanency
hearing:
        (1) demonstrating that on-going assessment of the
    strengths and needs of the child continues to support the
    determination that the child's needs cannot be met through
    placement in a foster family home, that the placement
    provides the most effective and appropriate level of care
    for the child in the least restrictive, appropriate
    environment, and that the placement is consistent with the
    short-term and long-term permanency goal for the child, as
    specified in the permanency plan for the child;
        (2) documenting the specific treatment or service
    needs that should be met for the child in the placement and
    the length of time the child is expected to need the
    treatment or services; and
        (3) the efforts made by the agency to prepare the
    child to return home or to be placed with a fit and willing
    relative, a legal guardian, or an adoptive parent, or in a
    foster family home.
    (2) The first permanency hearing shall be conducted by the
judge. Subsequent permanency hearings may be heard by a judge
or by hearing officers appointed or approved by the court in
the manner set forth in Section 2-28.1 of this Act. The initial
hearing shall be held (a) within 12 months from the date
temporary custody was taken, regardless of whether an
adjudication or dispositional hearing has been completed
within that time frame, (b) if the parental rights of both
parents have been terminated in accordance with the procedure
described in subsection (5) of Section 2-21, within 30 days of
the order for termination of parental rights and appointment
of a guardian with power to consent to adoption, or (c) in
accordance with subsection (2) of Section 2-13.1. Subsequent
permanency hearings shall be held every 6 months or more
frequently if necessary in the court's determination following
the initial permanency hearing, in accordance with the
standards set forth in this Section, until the court
determines that the plan and goal have been achieved. Once the
plan and goal have been achieved, if the minor remains in
substitute care, the case shall be reviewed at least every 6
months thereafter, subject to the provisions of this Section,
unless the minor is placed in the guardianship of a suitable
relative or other person and the court determines that further
monitoring by the court does not further the health, safety or
best interest of the child and that this is a stable permanent
placement. The permanency hearings must occur within the time
frames set forth in this subsection and may not be delayed in
anticipation of a report from any source or due to the agency's
failure to timely file its written report (this written report
means the one required under the next paragraph and does not
mean the service plan also referred to in that paragraph).
    The public agency that is the custodian or guardian of the
minor, or another agency responsible for the minor's care,
shall ensure that all parties to the permanency hearings are
provided a copy of the most recent service plan prepared
within the prior 6 months at least 14 days in advance of the
hearing. If not contained in the agency's service plan, the
agency shall also include a report setting forth (i) any
special physical, psychological, educational, medical,
emotional, or other needs of the minor or his or her family
that are relevant to a permanency or placement determination
and (ii) for any minor age 16 or over, a written description of
the programs and services that will enable the minor to
prepare for independent living. If not contained in the
agency's service plan, the agency's report shall specify if a
minor is placed in a licensed child care facility under a
corrective plan by the Department due to concerns impacting
the minor's safety and well-being. The report shall explain
the steps the Department is taking to ensure the safety and
well-being of the minor and that the minor's needs are met in
the facility. The agency's written report must detail what
progress or lack of progress the parent has made in correcting
the conditions requiring the child to be in care; whether the
child can be returned home without jeopardizing the child's
health, safety, and welfare, and if not, what permanency goal
is recommended to be in the best interests of the child, and
why the other permanency goals are not appropriate. The
caseworker must appear and testify at the permanency hearing.
If a permanency hearing has not previously been scheduled by
the court, the moving party shall move for the setting of a
permanency hearing and the entry of an order within the time
frames set forth in this subsection.
    At the permanency hearing, the court shall determine the
future status of the child. The court shall set one of the
following permanency goals:
        (A) The minor will be returned home by a specific date
    within 5 months.
        (B) The minor will be in short-term care with a
    continued goal to return home within a period not to
    exceed one year, where the progress of the parent or
    parents is substantial giving particular consideration to
    the age and individual needs of the minor.
        (B-1) The minor will be in short-term care with a
    continued goal to return home pending a status hearing.
    When the court finds that a parent has not made reasonable
    efforts or reasonable progress to date, the court shall
    identify what actions the parent and the Department must
    take in order to justify a finding of reasonable efforts
    or reasonable progress and shall set a status hearing to
    be held not earlier than 9 months from the date of
    adjudication nor later than 11 months from the date of
    adjudication during which the parent's progress will again
    be reviewed.
        (C) The minor will be in substitute care pending court
    determination on termination of parental rights.
        (D) Adoption, provided that parental rights have been
    terminated or relinquished.
        (E) The guardianship of the minor will be transferred
    to an individual or couple on a permanent basis provided
    that goals (A) through (D) have been deemed inappropriate
    and not in the child's best interests. The court shall
    confirm that the Department has discussed adoption, if
    appropriate, and guardianship with the caregiver prior to
    changing a goal to guardianship ruled out.
        (F) The minor over age 15 will be in substitute care
    pending independence. In selecting this permanency goal,
    the Department of Children and Family Services may provide
    services to enable reunification and to strengthen the
    minor's connections with family, fictive kin, and other
    responsible adults, provided the services are in the
    minor's best interest. The services shall be documented in
    the service plan.
        (G) The minor will be in substitute care because he or
    she cannot be provided for in a home environment due to
    developmental disabilities or mental illness or because he
    or she is a danger to self or others, provided that goals
    (A) through (D) have been deemed inappropriate and not in
    the child's best interests ruled out.
    In selecting any permanency goal, the court shall indicate
in writing the reasons the goal was selected and why the
preceding goals were deemed inappropriate and not in the
child's best interest ruled out. Where the court has selected
a permanency goal other than (A), (B), or (B-1), the
Department of Children and Family Services shall not provide
further reunification services, except as provided in
paragraph (F) of this subsection (2), but shall provide
services consistent with the goal selected.
        (H) Notwithstanding any other provision in this
    Section, the court may select the goal of continuing
    foster care as a permanency goal if:
            (1) The Department of Children and Family Services
        has custody and guardianship of the minor;
            (2) The court has deemed ruled out all other
        permanency goals inappropriate based on the child's
        best interest;
            (3) The court has found compelling reasons, based
        on written documentation reviewed by the court, to
        place the minor in continuing foster care. Compelling
        reasons include:
                (a) the child does not wish to be adopted or to
            be placed in the guardianship of his or her
            relative or foster care placement;
                (b) the child exhibits an extreme level of
            need such that the removal of the child from his or
            her placement would be detrimental to the child;
            or
                (c) the child who is the subject of the
            permanency hearing has existing close and strong
            bonds with a sibling, and achievement of another
            permanency goal would substantially interfere with
            the subject child's sibling relationship, taking
            into consideration the nature and extent of the
            relationship, and whether ongoing contact is in
            the subject child's best interest, including
            long-term emotional interest, as compared with the
            legal and emotional benefit of permanence;
            (4) The child has lived with the relative or
        foster parent for at least one year; and
            (5) The relative or foster parent currently caring
        for the child is willing and capable of providing the
        child with a stable and permanent environment.
    The court shall set a permanency goal that is in the best
interest of the child. In determining that goal, the court
shall consult with the minor in an age-appropriate manner
regarding the proposed permanency or transition plan for the
minor. The court's determination shall include the following
factors:
        (1) Age of the child.
        (2) Options available for permanence, including both
    out-of-state and in-state placement options.
        (3) Current placement of the child and the intent of
    the family regarding adoption.
        (4) Emotional, physical, and mental status or
    condition of the child.
        (5) Types of services previously offered and whether
    or not the services were successful and, if not
    successful, the reasons the services failed.
        (6) Availability of services currently needed and
    whether the services exist.
        (7) Status of siblings of the minor.
    The court shall consider (i) the permanency goal contained
in the service plan, (ii) the appropriateness of the services
contained in the plan and whether those services have been
provided, (iii) whether reasonable efforts have been made by
all the parties to the service plan to achieve the goal, and
(iv) whether the plan and goal have been achieved. All
evidence relevant to determining these questions, including
oral and written reports, may be admitted and may be relied on
to the extent of their probative value.
    The court shall make findings as to whether, in violation
of Section 8.2 of the Abused and Neglected Child Reporting
Act, any portion of the service plan compels a child or parent
to engage in any activity or refrain from any activity that is
not reasonably related to remedying a condition or conditions
that gave rise or which could give rise to any finding of child
abuse or neglect. The services contained in the service plan
shall include services reasonably related to remedy the
conditions that gave rise to removal of the child from the home
of his or her parents, guardian, or legal custodian or that the
court has found must be remedied prior to returning the child
home. Any tasks the court requires of the parents, guardian,
or legal custodian or child prior to returning the child home,
must be reasonably related to remedying a condition or
conditions that gave rise to or which could give rise to any
finding of child abuse or neglect.
    If the permanency goal is to return home, the court shall
make findings that identify any problems that are causing
continued placement of the children away from the home and
identify what outcomes would be considered a resolution to
these problems. The court shall explain to the parents that
these findings are based on the information that the court has
at that time and may be revised, should additional evidence be
presented to the court.
    The court shall review the Sibling Contact Support Plan
developed or modified under subsection (f) of Section 7.4 of
the Children and Family Services Act, if applicable. If the
Department has not convened a meeting to develop or modify a
Sibling Contact Support Plan, or if the court finds that the
existing Plan is not in the child's best interest, the court
may enter an order requiring the Department to develop, modify
or implement a Sibling Contact Support Plan, or order
mediation.
    If the goal has been achieved, the court shall enter
orders that are necessary to conform the minor's legal custody
and status to those findings.
    If, after receiving evidence, the court determines that
the services contained in the plan are not reasonably
calculated to facilitate achievement of the permanency goal,
the court shall put in writing the factual basis supporting
the determination and enter specific findings based on the
evidence. The court also shall enter an order for the
Department to develop and implement a new service plan or to
implement changes to the current service plan consistent with
the court's findings. The new service plan shall be filed with
the court and served on all parties within 45 days of the date
of the order. The court shall continue the matter until the new
service plan is filed. Except as authorized by subsection
(2.5) of this Section and as otherwise specifically authorized
by law, the court is not empowered under this Section to order
specific placements, specific services, or specific service
providers to be included in the service plan.
    A guardian or custodian appointed by the court pursuant to
this Act shall file updated case plans with the court every 6
months.
    Rights of wards of the court under this Act are
enforceable against any public agency by complaints for relief
by mandamus filed in any proceedings brought under this Act.
    (2.5) If, after reviewing the evidence, including evidence
from the Department, the court determines that the minor's
current or planned placement is not necessary or appropriate
to facilitate achievement of the permanency goal, the court
shall put in writing the factual basis supporting its
determination and enter specific findings based on the
evidence. If the court finds that the minor's current or
planned placement is not necessary or appropriate, the court
may enter an order directing the Department to implement a
recommendation by the minor's treating clinician or a
clinician contracted by the Department to evaluate the minor
or a recommendation made by the Department. If the Department
places a minor in a placement under an order entered under this
subsection (2.5), the Department has the authority to remove
the minor from that placement when a change in circumstances
necessitates the removal to protect the minor's health,
safety, and best interest. If the Department determines
removal is necessary, the Department shall notify the parties
of the planned placement change in writing no later than 10
days prior to the implementation of its determination unless
remaining in the placement poses an imminent risk of harm to
the minor, in which case the Department shall notify the
parties of the placement change in writing immediately
following the implementation of its decision. The Department
shall notify others of the decision to change the minor's
placement as required by Department rule.
    (3) Following the permanency hearing, the court shall
enter a written order that includes the determinations
required under subsection (2) of this Section and sets forth
the following:
        (a) The future status of the minor, including the
    permanency goal, and any order necessary to conform the
    minor's legal custody and status to such determination; or
        (b) If the permanency goal of the minor cannot be
    achieved immediately, the specific reasons for continuing
    the minor in the care of the Department of Children and
    Family Services or other agency for short term placement,
    and the following determinations:
            (i) (Blank).
            (ii) Whether the services required by the court
        and by any service plan prepared within the prior 6
        months have been provided and (A) if so, whether the
        services were reasonably calculated to facilitate the
        achievement of the permanency goal or (B) if not
        provided, why the services were not provided.
            (iii) Whether the minor's current or planned
        placement is necessary, and appropriate to the plan
        and goal, recognizing the right of minors to the least
        restrictive (most family-like) setting available and
        in close proximity to the parents' home consistent
        with the health, safety, best interest and special
        needs of the minor and, if the minor is placed
        out-of-state, whether the out-of-state placement
        continues to be appropriate and consistent with the
        health, safety, and best interest of the minor.
            (iv) (Blank).
            (v) (Blank).
    (4) The minor or any person interested in the minor may
apply to the court for a change in custody of the minor and the
appointment of a new custodian or guardian of the person or for
the restoration of the minor to the custody of his parents or
former guardian or custodian.
    When return home is not selected as the permanency goal:
        (a) The Department, the minor, or the current foster
    parent or relative caregiver seeking private guardianship
    may file a motion for private guardianship of the minor.
    Appointment of a guardian under this Section requires
    approval of the court.
        (b) The State's Attorney may file a motion to
    terminate parental rights of any parent who has failed to
    make reasonable efforts to correct the conditions which
    led to the removal of the child or reasonable progress
    toward the return of the child, as defined in subdivision
    (D)(m) of Section 1 of the Adoption Act or for whom any
    other unfitness ground for terminating parental rights as
    defined in subdivision (D) of Section 1 of the Adoption
    Act exists.
        When parental rights have been terminated for a
    minimum of 3 years and the child who is the subject of the
    permanency hearing is 13 years old or older and is not
    currently placed in a placement likely to achieve
    permanency, the Department of Children and Family Services
    shall make reasonable efforts to locate parents whose
    rights have been terminated, except when the Court
    determines that those efforts would be futile or
    inconsistent with the subject child's best interests. The
    Department of Children and Family Services shall assess
    the appropriateness of the parent whose rights have been
    terminated, and shall, as appropriate, foster and support
    connections between the parent whose rights have been
    terminated and the youth. The Department of Children and
    Family Services shall document its determinations and
    efforts to foster connections in the child's case plan.
    Custody of the minor shall not be restored to any parent,
guardian or legal custodian in any case in which the minor is
found to be neglected or abused under Section 2-3 or dependent
under Section 2-4 of this Act, unless the minor can be cared
for at home without endangering his or her health or safety and
it is in the best interest of the minor, and if such neglect,
abuse, or dependency is found by the court under paragraph (1)
of Section 2-21 of this Act to have come about due to the acts
or omissions or both of such parent, guardian or legal
custodian, until such time as an investigation is made as
provided in paragraph (5) and a hearing is held on the issue of
the health, safety and best interest of the minor and the
fitness of such parent, guardian or legal custodian to care
for the minor and the court enters an order that such parent,
guardian or legal custodian is fit to care for the minor. In
the event that the minor has attained 18 years of age and the
guardian or custodian petitions the court for an order
terminating his guardianship or custody, guardianship or
custody shall terminate automatically 30 days after the
receipt of the petition unless the court orders otherwise. No
legal custodian or guardian of the person may be removed
without his consent until given notice and an opportunity to
be heard by the court.
    When the court orders a child restored to the custody of
the parent or parents, the court shall order the parent or
parents to cooperate with the Department of Children and
Family Services and comply with the terms of an after-care
plan, or risk the loss of custody of the child and possible
termination of their parental rights. The court may also enter
an order of protective supervision in accordance with Section
2-24.
    (5) Whenever a parent, guardian, or legal custodian files
a motion for restoration of custody of the minor, and the minor
was adjudicated neglected, abused, or dependent as a result of
physical abuse, the court shall cause to be made an
investigation as to whether the movant has ever been charged
with or convicted of any criminal offense which would indicate
the likelihood of any further physical abuse to the minor.
Evidence of such criminal convictions shall be taken into
account in determining whether the minor can be cared for at
home without endangering his or her health or safety and
fitness of the parent, guardian, or legal custodian.
        (a) Any agency of this State or any subdivision
    thereof shall co-operate with the agent of the court in
    providing any information sought in the investigation.
        (b) The information derived from the investigation and
    any conclusions or recommendations derived from the
    information shall be provided to the parent, guardian, or
    legal custodian seeking restoration of custody prior to
    the hearing on fitness and the movant shall have an
    opportunity at the hearing to refute the information or
    contest its significance.
        (c) All information obtained from any investigation
    shall be confidential as provided in Section 5-150 of this
    Act.
(Source: P.A. 100-45, eff. 8-11-17; 100-136, eff. 8-18-17;
100-229, eff. 1-1-18; 100-863, eff. 8-14-18; 100-978, eff.
8-19-18; 101-63, eff. 10-1-19.)
 
    Section 99. Effective date. This Act takes effect upon
becoming law.

Effective Date: 7/30/2021