Child Welfare Policy Manual

December 04, 2016

3.1E  INDEPENDENT LIVING, Certifications and Requirements, Miscellaneous Requirements

1. Question: Does the court have to approve the youth's case plan that describes the services needed for him/her to transition from adolescence to adulthood?

Answer: No. The Social Security Act at sections 475(1) and (5) addresses case plan and case review system requirements for titles IV-E and IV-B. There is no statutory requirement for judicial approval. The court's role is to exercise oversight of the permanency plan, review the State agency's reasonable efforts to prevent removal from the home, reunify the child with the family, conduct permanency hearings and finalize permanent placements. Although approval is not required, the court must address, as part of the permanency hearing, the services needed to assist youth ages 16 and over to make the transition from foster care to independent living.