When children have been abused or neglected, DFPS may remove them from their homes to ensure their immediate safety. The court system is required to consider a temporary placement with a relative and asks the parents to provide DFPS with contact information for relatives who may be able to at least temporarily care for the child.
When placing children, the court considers their needs the most important consideration. All the parties involved in the decision making process may identify a kinship placement as the most appropriate as a result of a Family Group Decision Making (FGDM) conference. The placement may be court ordered, usually after DFPS completes a home assessment. The agency will try to take into account the parents’ desires about the care provided to their child whenever possible. If placement with a relative is not available or appropriate, the child may be placed in foster care.