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3.3.10 Transition between orders

Last Modified: 28-Jun-2018 Review Date: 13-Apr-2016

Purpose

This entry describes the possible movements between orders for children in the Chief Executive Officer's (CEO’s) care:

  • Movement from provisional protection and care to other arrangements
  • Movement from protection order (until 18) to protection order (special guardianship)
  • Movement from protection order (time-limited) to other arrangements
  • Movement from negotiated placement agreement (NPA) to other arrangements.

Note: CEO refers to the Chief Executive Officer of the Department of Communities (Communities).

Practice Requirements

  • All efforts must be made to ensure the child has continuity of care and planning must occur in relation to the type of order sought and the child’s placement.
  • Children must be given adequate information about the court processes, and where there is a placement move the reasons for the decision to change placements.
  • Communities must not enter into a negotiated placement agreement even for a short time where there are protective concerns or there is the belief that a stable placement arrangement is unavailable.
  • Similarly, the provision of a placement service under s.32(1)(a) of the Children and Community Services Act 2004  (the Act) must only occur if Communities has the capacity to respond appropriately to the needs of a child.
  • Any transition between orders needs to be a subject of the care plan and endorsed by the district director.
Process Maps

Not applicable

Procedures

  • Overview
  • Movement from provisional protection and care to other arrangements
  • Movement from protection order (until 18) to protection order (special guardianship)
  • Movement from protection order (time-limited) to other arrangements
  • Movement from a NPA to other arrangements
  • Overview

    Communities has a responsibility to provide continuity and stability in living arrangements to a child in the CEO’s care.  When a child moves between categories of care orders it is possible that this may impact on the child’s placement arrangement.

    Where a child in the CEO’s care is subject to a protection order (until 18) or protection order (time-limited) and is moved from placement to placement, it is feasible that parties with an interest, possibly the child themselves, could seek to have a protection order revoked on the basis that Communities is unable to provide continuity and stability in living arrangements for the child.

    The Children's Court (the Court) may decline to make an order on the basis of the ‘no order principle’ if the order does not offer greater benefit to the child.  Refer to s.46 of the Act.

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    Movement from provisional protection and care to other arrangements

    Where a child moves from provisional protection and care to other arrangements, there are six potential outcomes, with only two resulting in the child remaining in the CEO's care.

    The potential outcomes are a shift from:

    • provisional protection and care to dismissal of Communities' case
    • provisional protection and care to ‘no order’
    • provisional protection and care to protection order (supervision)
    • provisional protection and care to protection order (special guardianship)
    • provisional protection and care to protection order (time-limited), and
    • provisional protection and care to protection order (until 18)

    The child is no longer in the CEO's care if Communities' protection application is dismissed, where  ‘no order’ is made by the Court, the child is subject to a protection order (supervision), or the child is under a protection order (special guardianship). Refer to Chapter 3.3: Legal and Court Processes.

    Where a child shifts from provisional protection and care to a protection order (time-limited) or protection order (until 18) the child enters the CEO’s care. A care plan must then be prepared within 30 working days of the protection order being granted.  Refer to Chapter 3.3: Protection orders (time-limited and until 18) and Chapter 3.4: Care planning - provisional care plans, care plans and Viewpoint.

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    Movement from protection order (until 18) to protection order (special guardianship)

    A protection order (special guardianship) may also be secured through an application to revoke a protection order (until 18) and replace it with a protection order (special guardianship).

    When a child moves to a protection order (special guardianship) the child is no longer in the CEO’s Care. Case management ceases at the granting of the order and the case should be closed. A Carer Subsidy payment continues only if there has been a Court order for continuation of a subsidy under s.65 of the Act. This will be reviewed annually.

    Refer to Chapter 3.3: Protection order (special guardianship) for further details.

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    Movement from protection order (time-limited) to other arrangements

    There are four possible outcomes in relation to a child subject to a protection order (time-limited). The child may move from a protection order (time-limited) to:

    • 'no order'
    • protection order (until 18)
    • protection order (supervision), or 
    • protection order (special guardianship).

    Where no order exists or the child is now subject to a protection order (supervision) or protection order (special guardianship), the child is not in the CEO's care. Refer to Chapter 3.3: Legal and Court Processes.

    Where the child moves from a protection order (time-limited) to protection order (until 18), the child remains in the CEO’s Care and the following need to be considered:

    • the care plan will need to be modified to reflect the change in circumstances which has implications for long term planning for the child
    • the nature of contact with family may change.
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    Movement from a NPA to other arrangements

    A child may move from a NPA into provisional protection and care when concerns are raised during the period of the NPA, and it is believed that the child is in need of protection.

    As a result, the child is brought into provisional protection and care with or without a warrant and protection proceedings are commenced.

    The NPA is terminated (in writing to the parent/s) and the conditions of provisional protection and care now apply.

    A provisional care plan is developed to replace the care plan which was developed while the child was under the NPA. 

    The child may remain in the placement arrangement made under the NPA or be moved to another placement arrangement.

    Refer to Chapter 3.4: Negotiated placement agreements (NPA) for further detail.

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