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This technical bulletin provides agencies with information required to create the AFCARS data files.  It provides technical specifications on the structural layout of the XML data and shares the XML schema for the Out-of-Home Care File and the Adoption and Guardianship Assistance File.  It also covers information on encryption of the file records.

This Program Instruction (PI) notifies States of the new policy and procedures regarding the collection of funds resulting from penalties being assessed due to a State’s substantial failure to meet the Adoption and Foster Care Analysis and Reporting System (AFCARS) standards and requirements in 45 CFR 1355.40.