137110. Practice Considerations

  1. The social worker provides, subject to the constraints outlined above, a copy of all case file information, relevant to a court proceeding, to a child's parent(s), guardian, legal custodian, or legal counsel. Information which the department reasonably expects to introduce to support the petition is considered relevant. The social worker will provide a copy, free of charge, within 20 days of a written request or prior to the Shelter Care Hearing, whichever is sooner.
  2. Clients with proper identification have the right to look at their records if they request to do so. They also may challenge the accuracy, completeness, or relevance of statements. Sources of CPS complaints remain anonymous, and their names must be purged from the record prior to the client's review.
  3. The social worker offers language interpreter services to clients who are unable to read the case record information.
  4. All material presented at a dispute hearing is open to examination of the client and his/her representatives, even though such material would ordinarily be considered confidential.
  5. Staff subpoenaed to appear in court shall not take the social service record unless it is also subpoenaed, at which point the social worker consults with the assigned Assistant Attorney General.
  6. No individual shall make available outside the department a partial or complete list of service recipient names or address. Social Service Payment System (SSPS) reports containing client identifiers are confidential.
  7. For adoption records, after the petition for adoption is filed, information, except medical reports, in the child's record may be released only by written order of a Superior Court.
  8. With respect to the service records of children and youth who are under the jurisdiction of the court, the requirements outlined in the Case Services Policy Manual, Chapter 2000, section 2150, are to be followed. RCW 13.50.100
  9. If a juvenile, his/her parents, or their attorney makes a written request asking the department about the existence and content of custody, or care records, the Area Manager completes the following steps.
    1. Makes written response to the inquiry within 10 working days after its receipt. The department provides to the juvenile, the parents, or attorney making the inquiry information regarding the location, nature, and content of any records in the department's possession. A juvenile, the parents, or the attorney, wishing to challenge the information contained in the department records, must notify the department in writing, providing:
      1. The name of the juvenile.
      2. A statement of those portions of the record alleged to be inaccurate.
      3. If retention of the record is being challenged, a statement as to why the record should be destroyed.
    2. Reviews the notification of challenge and responds in writing within 30 calendar days. The response will indicate the corrections which have been or will be made or shall state the basis for denial of any requested corrections. If appropriate, the response will also include a statement indicating whether the records have been destroyed or transferred to another juvenile justice or child care agency.
    3. Notifies the juvenile, the parents, or their attorney that, if they dispute the department's response, they may seek an administrative review of the decision as provided in the Administrative Procedure Act.
  10. CA staff removing records to an alternative work site must maintain security and confidentiality of information contained in records. To maintain security and confidentiality, information contained in FamLink or mobile devices will be printed on CA network equipment