Department for Community Based Services

Standards of Practice Online Manual

4.58 Mail to Child in OOHC

Cabinet for Health and Family Services

Department for Community Based Services
Division of Protection and Permanency
Standards of Practice Online Manual
Chapter:
Chapter 4-Out of Home Care Services (OOHC)
Effective:
2/1/2015
Section:
4.58 Mail to Child in OOHC
Version:
2

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Legal Authority/Introduction

LEGAL AUTHORITY:

  • N/A

Procedure

  1. Prior to TPR, Cabinet staff does not open letters to and from a child in OOHC, or withhold letters from a child, unless the court has issued an order prohibiting correspondence from any party to a child in OOHC, at which point the letters are turned over to the court. 
  2. A court order may be sought, upon approval by the FSOS, if the SSW feels that correspondence between a party and a child is detrimental to the child’s well-being.
  3. When correspondence to or from a child is limited or prohibited, the SSW:
    1. Explains the reasons to the child; and
    2. Communicates between the party and the child when appropriate.
  4. If contact between a child in OOHC and a party has been court ordered to be supervised or monitored, the Cabinet may screen correspondence prior to delivery to the child.
  5. When the SSW thinks a letter may upset the child, the SSW or caregiver is present when the child opens it.
  6. The FSOS is only able to approve intercepting or prohibiting correspondence to a child from a parent when:
    1. The parent’s rights have been terminated; and
    2. The mail may have a disruptive and destabilizing effect on the child, as determined by a qualified mental health professional. 
 

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