Interstate Compact On The Placement Of Children

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Interstate Compact on the Placement of Children

An agreement between states that governs the placement of children for adoption or foster care across state lines. Drafted in the late 1950s, New York was the first state to join the compact. According to the American Public Human Services Association, as of this writing, all states are members of the compact.

The compact is a safeguard for children. It ensures that the laws of both states involved have been complied with and that the child will receive appropriate supervision and required home studies will be done and followed up.

Each state appoints a compact administrator, who is within the state social services arm of the public welfare department (commonly known as the human services department.)

Compact administrators need about six weeks or more from the time the receiving compact office is notified of the proposed placement to process the various papers. (Some cases may take more or less time, depending on individual situations.)

The sending agency retains financial and legal responsibility for the child until the interstate placement ends due to adoption, the child reaching the age of majority or some other change. Violations of the compact are rare, but penalties do exist and children have been returned to the sending state when they were illegally placed.

The compact includes ten articles.

See also INTERSTATE ADOPTION for a discussion of problems with the Interstate Compact.

For further information or to obtain a copy of Guide to the Interstate Compact on the Placement of Children, contact

American Public Human Services Association
810 First St. NE, Suite 500
Washington, DC 20002-4205
(202) 682-0100

Find more information on Interstate Compact on the Placement of Children

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