Issue: Interstate Compact for the Placement of Children (ICPC)
Impact: Judicial decisions with interstate placement implications must comply with the Compact requirements.
Position: No formal position
Interstate Compact on the Placement of Children (ICPC) was originally
drafted in 1960 to ensure protection of and services for children who
are placed across state lines for foster care and adoption. The ICPC
also assigns legal responsibility and responsibility for supervision
and the provision of services for these out of state placements. The
American Public Human Services Association (APHSA) is the secretariat
for the ICPC. In 2004, APHSA undertook an effort to update the ICPC.
Some of the issues addressed included the type placements covered by
the ICPC, which state should bear the cost of home studies and
supervision, how to resolve disputes between states, information
sharing between states, timeliness of placements, and the definition of
established a Development and Drafting Team (DDT) to update the
Compact. Mike Buenger represented COSCA on the DDT, which began
meeting in July 2004. APHSA developed a new compact and is encouraging
states to adopt the proposed legislative language. The revised ICPC is
modeled after the Interstate Compact on Adult Supervision. A copy of
the new ICPC is posted on APHSA’s website. An Interstate Commission of
member states will be established and will have rulemaking authority.
Much of the details for implementing the new ICPC will be left to the
rulemaking process. The revised ICPC limits the application of the
ICPC to children in foster care and certain private cases and excludes
the placement of children in residential treatment facilities by their
Thirty-five states must adopt the ICPC before it is effective.
When the revised ICPC was
published, private adoption attorneys raised concerns related to
conflicts with the Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction Enforcement Act
(UCCJEA), choice of law rules, and approval of provisional travel to
expedite placements. APHSA made changes to the ICPC to address the
concerns. The 2008 version of ICPC is posted on the APHSA website.
The changes make it clear that the ICPC does not apply to placements in
custody proceedings in which a public child placing agency is not
involved and the placement is not intended to effectuate an adoption.
The changes also clarify that the substantive laws of the state in
which an adoption will be finalized solely governs all issues related
to the adoption and that the court in which the adoption proceeding is
filed has subject matter jurisdiction except when (1) the child is a
ward of another court that established jurisdiction prior to the
placement, (2) the child is in the legal custody of a public agency in
the sending state, and (3) a court in the sending state has otherwise
assumed jurisdiction prior to the request for approval of placement.
The revised ICPC also includes a procedure and documentation
requirements for expediting placements proposed by private child
placing agencies. Ten states have
adopted the revised ICPC thus far – AK, DE, FL, IN, ME, MN, MO, NE, OH,
and OK. Legislation is pending in AZ and KY.