Becoming a foster parent can be a rewarding experience. Foster parents play an important role in society because they care for vulnerable children. Foster families that create a stable home environment help these children overcome issues with neglect or mistreatment. Yet, foster parenting isn’t an easy role to assume. Each state sets out rules regarding who may undertake the role. If you are considering becoming a foster parent, it is important to understand the legal requirements beforehand.
Requirements Under Utah Law
Utah residents must meet several qualifications to become a licensed foster parent. First, you must be a citizen or legal resident of the U.S who is at least 21 years of age. You’ll also have to pass a criminal background check. Potential foster parents must also prove that they are medically capable of raising children, and that they are financially stable. However, unlike other jurisdictions, Utah does not require you to be married in order to qualify.
The requirements are fairly similar in other states as well. Many jurisdictions will require potential foster parents to undergo special training through a county agency. States, like Utah, may also prohibit you from running a daycare while you have a valid foster care license.
Placements Based on Kinship
Many foster parents choose to care for a child who is a relative. This may be done by going through the foster parent process, or by obtaining guardianship of the child. A family law attorney can help you decide which is the best choice. Yet, the actual decision regarding placement rests in the hands of Utah’s Division of Child and Family Services.
Additional Factors for Foster Homes
In additional to meeting the personal requirements, foster parents will also have to maintain a suitable living environment. This means that your home must be free of health and safety hazards. Your residence may also need a certain number of bedrooms to satisfy occupancy restrictions.
Find Out More About The Foster Care Process
It can be difficult to figure out all the requirements for becoming a foster parent. An experienced attorney who practices family law can be a great asset. If you need help in the foster parent process contact T.R. Spencer Law Office.