State Codes and Statutes

State Codes and Statutes

Statutes > North-carolina > Chapter_7B > GS_7B-906

§ 7B‑906.  Review ofcustody order.

(a)        In any case wherecustody is removed from a parent, guardian, custodian, or caretaker the courtshall conduct a review hearing within 90 days from the date of thedispositional hearing and shall conduct a review hearing within six monthsthereafter. The director of social services shall make a timely request to theclerk to calendar each review at a session of court scheduled for the hearingof juvenile matters. The clerk shall give 15 days' notice of the review and itspurpose to the parent, the juvenile, if 12 years of age or more, the guardian,the foster parent, relative, or preadoptive parent providing care for thechild, the custodian or agency with custody, the guardian ad litem, and anyother person or agency the court may specify, indicating the court's impendingreview. The department of social services shall either provide to the clerk thename and address of the foster parent, relative, or preadoptive parentproviding care for the child for notice under this subsection or file writtendocumentation with the clerk that the child's current care provider was sentnotice of hearing. Nothing in this subsection shall be construed to make thefoster parent, relative, or preadoptive parent a party to the proceeding solelybased on receiving notice and the right to be heard.

(b)        Notwithstandingother provisions of this Article, the court may waive the holding of reviewhearings required by subsection (a) of this section, may require writtenreports to the court by the agency or person holding custody in lieu of reviewhearings, or order that review hearings be held less often than every sixmonths, if the court finds by clear, cogent, and convincing evidence that:

(1)        The juvenile hasresided with a relative or has been in the custody of another suitable personfor a period of at least one year;

(2)        The placement isstable and continuation of the placement is in the juvenile's best interests;

(3)        Neither thejuvenile's best interests nor the rights of any party require that reviewhearings be held every six months;

(4)        All parties areaware that the matter may be brought before the court for review at any time bythe filing of a motion for review or on the court's own motion; and

(5)        The court order hasdesignated the relative or other suitable person as the juvenile's permanentcaretaker or guardian of the person.

The court may not waive orrefuse to conduct a review hearing if a party files a motion seeking thereview. However, if a guardian of the person has been appointed for thejuvenile and the court has also made findings in accordance with G.S. 7B‑907that guardianship is the permanent plan for the juvenile, the court shallproceed in accordance with G.S. 7B‑600(b).

(c)        At every reviewhearing, the court shall consider information from the parent, the juvenile,the guardian, any foster parent, relative, or preadoptive parent providing carefor the child, the custodian or agency with custody, the guardian ad litem, andany other person or agency which will aid in its review. The court may considerany evidence, including hearsay evidence as defined in G.S. 8C‑1, Rule801, that the court finds to be relevant, reliable, and necessary to determinethe needs of the juvenile and the most appropriate disposition.

In each case the court shallconsider the following criteria and make written findings regarding those thatare relevant:

(1)        Services which havebeen offered to reunite the family, or whether efforts to reunite the familyclearly would be futile or inconsistent with the juvenile's safety and need fora safe, permanent home within a reasonable period of time.

(2)        Where the juvenile'sreturn home is unlikely, the efforts which have been made to evaluate or planfor other methods of care.

(3)        Goals of the fostercare placement and the appropriateness of the foster care plan.

(4)        A new foster careplan, if continuation of care is sought, that addresses the role the currentfoster parent will play in the planning for the juvenile.

(5)        Reports on theplacements the juvenile has had and any services offered to the juvenile andthe parent, guardian, custodian, or caretaker.

(6)        An appropriatevisitation plan.

(7)        If the juvenile is16 or 17 years of age, a report on an independent living assessment of thejuvenile and, if appropriate, an independent living plan developed for thejuvenile.

(8)        When and iftermination of parental rights should be considered.

(9)        Any other criteriathe court deems necessary.

(d)        The court, aftermaking findings of fact, may appoint a guardian of the person for the juvenilepursuant to G.S. 7B‑600 or may make any disposition authorized by G.S. 7B‑903,including the authority to place the juvenile in the custody of either parentor any relative found by the court to be suitable and found by the court to bein the best interests of the juvenile. The court may enter an order continuingthe placement under review or providing for a different placement as is deemedto be in the best interests of the juvenile. The order must be reduced towriting, signed, and entered within 30 days of the completion of the hearing.If the order is not entered within 30 days following completion of the hearing,the clerk of court for juvenile matters shall schedule a subsequent hearing atthe first session of court scheduled for the hearing of juvenile mattersfollowing the 30‑day period to determine and explain the reason for thedelay and to obtain any needed clarification as to the contents of the order.The order shall be entered within 10 days of the subsequent hearing required bythis subsection.

If at any time custody isrestored to a parent, guardian, custodian, or caretaker the court shall berelieved of the duty to conduct periodic judicial reviews of the placement.

(e)        Reserved.

(f)         The provisions ofG.S. 7B‑507 shall apply to any order entered under this section.

(g)        If the courtdetermines that the juvenile shall be placed in the custody of an individualother than the parents or appoints an individual guardian of the personpursuant to G.S. 7B‑600, the court shall verify that the person receivingcustody or being appointed as guardian of the juvenile understands the legalsignificance of the placement or appointment and will have adequate resourcesto care appropriately for the juvenile.  (1979, c. 815, s. 1; 1987, c. 810; 1987 (Reg. Sess.,1988), c. 1090, s. 11; 1989, c. 152, s. 1; 1997‑390, s. 9; 1998‑202,s. 6; 1998‑229, ss. 8, 25; 1999‑456, s. 60; 2000‑124, s. 2;2001‑208, s. 19; 2001‑487, s. 101; 2003‑62, s. 2; 2003‑140,s. 9(c); 2005‑398, s. 6; 2007‑276, s. 3; 2009‑311, s. 6.)