Child Protective Services

Handbook Revision, June 2016

This revision of the Child Protective Services Handbook was published on June 1, 2016.

CPS wants to ensure that the general public understands what critical actions caseworkers are required to perform and why. To further this understanding, CPS has set up a policy e-mail box for the general public: CPSPolicyQuestions@dfps.state.tx.us. Please feel free to contact us, via this email address, with any general questions related to policy.

For questions or concerns regarding specific cases, please contact the caseworker or supervisor, or the Office of Consumer Affairs at 1-800-720-7777.

Dispositions Involving Emotional Abuse

Face-to-Face Contact - Closing a Family Preservation Stage

Interviews

Permanency Care Assistance numbering correction

Forensic Assessment Center Network (FACN) Resource Guide

Dispositions Involving Emotional Abuse (PATS 9132)

The item below is added to clarify criteria for reaching a disposition of emotional abuse.

The caseworker must consult with professional collaterals outside of CPS who have witnessed and will verify observable and material impairment to the child's growth, development, or psychological functioning.

When assessing a child for mental or emotional injury from exposure to domestic violence, the caseworker must, whenever possible, consult with professional collaterals that have documented expertise or training in the dynamics of domestic violence.

These statements reflect updates to 40 Texas Administrative Code §700.453(b)(1)(A).

See:

2364 Dispositions Involving Emotional Abuse

Face-to-Face Contact - Closing a Family Preservation Stage (PATS 9142)

Clarifies the wording under 2550, Closing a Preservation Stage, regarding face-to-face contact requirements.

Current language states face-to-face contact required at least 10 working days before submitting case for closure.

Restated to clarify that face-to-face contact required 10 working days or fewer before submitting the case for closure.

See:

2550 Closing a Family Preservation Stage

Interviews (PATS 9192)

The items below are revised for clarity and to ensure that policy conforms with legislative intent. The changes clarify:

  •   the caseworker's options if a parent denies consent for a child to be interviewed alone; and

  •   the information the caseworker must provide and not provide at the first contact with parents, alleged perpetrators, or other principal adults.

See:

2240 Interviews

2241 Interviews With Children

2241.1 Time Frames for Interviewing Children

2241.2 Interviewing Other Children in the Home

2241.3 Requirements for Contacting Children

2241.31 Consent to Interview a Child at Home

2241.32 Parental Refusal to Allow a Child to be Interviewed

2241.33 Child Privacy

2241.34 Audio and Visual Documentation of a Child’s Interview

2241.4 Parental Notification that a Child Has Been Interviewed

2241.5 Interviews with Children at Specialized Facilities

2241.6 Accepting Child Interviews Conducted by Others

2241.7 Transporting a Child

2242 Interviewing Parents and Alleged Perpetrators or Other Principal Adults

2242.1 Obtaining Permission to Enter the Home

2242.2 Notification that the Interview is Being Recorded

2242.3 Obtaining Demographic Information from Principals

2242.4 Required Documents to Provide to Parents

2242.5 Complaints or Requests for Clarification

Permanency Care Assistance correction

The sections below are renumbered to move items related to permanency care assistance into the correction section of the handbook. See:

1622 1718.3 Recouping an Overpayment of Permanency Care Assistance Payments

1622.1 1718.31 Standard Cases – Recouping PCA Overpayments in 30 Days

1622.2 1718.32 Hardship Cases – Recouping PCA Payments in Any Dollar Amount

1622.3 1718.33 Extreme Hardship Cases – Recouping PCA Payments in More Than 12 Months (Requires State Office Approval)

1623 1622 Fair Hearings Regarding Decisions About Permanency Care Assistance

1623.1 1622.1 Duties of the Adoption Assistance Eligibility Specialist

1623.2 1622.2 Appealing Decisions Made Regarding Permanency Care Assistance

1624 1623 Permanency Care Assistance Successor

Cross-references were updated in:

1614 Informing Families About Permanency Care Assistance

4519.1 Permanency Care Assistance Successor (PCA-S)

Forensic Assessment Center Network (FACN) Resource Guide

The resource guide has been added to the Resource Guide section.