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Substitute Senate Bill No. 323

Public Act No. 18-58

AN ACT REQUIRING NOTICE PRIOR TO THE TRANSFER OF A CHILD TO A NEW OUT-OF-HOME PLACEMENT.

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Assembly convened:

Section 1. Subdivision (4) of subsection (j) of section 46b-129 of the 2018 supplement to the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective July 1, 2018):

(4) The commissioner shall be the guardian of such child or youth for the duration of the commitment, provided the child or youth has not reached the age of eighteen years, or until another guardian has been legally appointed, and in like manner, upon such vesting of the care of such child or youth, such other public or private agency or individual shall be the guardian of such child or youth until such child or youth has reached the age of eighteen years or, in the case of a child or youth in full-time attendance in a secondary school, a technical education and career school, a college or a state-accredited job training program, until such child or youth has reached the age of twenty-one years or until another guardian has been legally appointed. The commissioner may place any child or youth so committed to the commissioner in a suitable foster home or in the home of a fictive kin caregiver, relative caregiver, or in a licensed child-caring institution or in the care and custody of any accredited, licensed or approved child-caring agency, within or without the state, provided a child shall not be placed outside the state except for good cause and unless the parents or guardian of such child are notified in advance of such placement and given an opportunity to be heard, or in a receiving home maintained and operated by the Commissioner of Children and Families. In placing such child or youth, the commissioner shall, if possible, select a home, agency, institution or person of like religious faith to that of a parent of such child or youth, if such faith is known or may be ascertained by reasonable inquiry, provided such home conforms to the standards of said commissioner and the commissioner shall, when placing siblings, if possible, place such children together. At least ten days prior to transferring a child or youth to a second or subsequent placement, the commissioner shall give written notice to such child or youth and such child or youth's attorney of said commissioner's intention to make such transfer, unless an emergency or risk to such child or youth's well-being necessitates the immediate transfer of such child and renders such notice impossible. Upon the issuance of an order committing the child or youth to the Commissioner of Children and Families, or not later than sixty days after the issuance of such order, the court shall determine whether the Department of Children and Families made reasonable efforts to keep the child or youth with his or her parents or guardian prior to the issuance of such order and, if such efforts were not made, whether such reasonable efforts were not possible, taking into consideration the child's or youth's best interests, including the child's or youth's health and safety.

Approved June 4, 2018