California Family Code
If the prospective adoptive parent of a child is a foster parent with whom the child has lived for a minimum of six months or a relative caregiver who has had an ongoing and significant relationship with the child, an assessment or home study of the prospective adoptive parent may, at the discretion of the department or a licensed adoption agency, or unless the court with jurisdiction over the child orders otherwise, require only the following:
(a) A criminal records check of the relative caregiver or foster parent, as provided in subdivision (a) of Section 8712.
(b) A determination that the relative caregiver or foster parent has sufficient financial stability to support the child and ensure that any adoption assistance program payment or other government assistance to which the child is entitled is used exclusively to meet the child's needs. In making this determination, the experience of the relative caregiver or foster parent only while the child was in his or her care shall be considered. For purposes of this section, the relative caregiver or foster parent shall be required to provide verification of employment records or income or both.
(c) A determination that the relative caregiver or foster parent has not abused or neglected the child while the child has been in his or her care and has fostered the healthy growth and development of the child. This determination shall include a review of the disciplinary practices of the relative caregiver or foster parent to ensure that the practices are age appropriate and do not physically or emotionally endanger the child.
(d) A determination that there is not a likelihood that the relative caregiver or foster parent will abuse or neglect the child in the future, that the caregiver or foster parent can protect the child, ensure necessary care and supervision, and foster the child's healthy growth and development.
(e) A determination that the relative caregiver or foster parent can address racial and cultural issues that may affect the child's well-being.
(f) An interview with the relative caregiver or foster parent, an interview with each individual residing in the home and an interview with the child to be adopted.
If the prospective adoptive parent of a child is a foster parent, the assessment or home study described in Section 8730 shall not be initiated until the child to be adopted has resided in the home of the foster parent for at least six months.
A report of a medical examination of the foster parent with whom the child has lived for a minimum of six months or the relative caregiver who has had an ongoing and significant relationship with the child shall be included in the assessment of each applicant unless the department or licensed adoption agency determines that, based on other available information, this report is unnecessary. The assessment shall require certification that the applicant and each adult residing in the applicant's home has received a test for communicable tuberculosis.
The department or licensed adoption agency shall require the adoptive parent to be provided with information related to the specific needs of the child to be adopted, that, as determined by the licensed adoption agency, may include information regarding the following: issues surrounding birth parents, the effects of abuse and neglect on children, cultural and racial issues, sexuality, contingency planning for children in the event of the parents' death or disability, financial assistance for adopted children, common childhood disabilities, including, but not limited to, emotional disturbances, attention deficit disorder, learning disabilities, speech and hearing impairment, and dyslexia, the importance of sibling and half-sibling relationships, and other issues related to adoption and child development and the availability of counseling to deal with these issues.
The department shall encourage adoption agencies to make adoption training programs available to prospective adoptive families.
The department shall require adoption agencies to inform the agency responsible for the foster care placement when a relative caregiver or foster parent has been denied approval to adopt based on an inability of the relative caregiver or foster parent to provide for the mental and emotional health, safety, and security of the child and to recommend either that the relative caregiver or foster parent be provided with additional support and supervision or that the child be removed from the home of the relative caregiver or foster parent.
The requirements of this chapter shall not be used as basis for removing a child who has been placed with a relative caregiver or foster parent prior to January 1, 1999, unless the noncompliance with the standards described therein present a danger to the health, safety, or emotional well-being of the child.