Foster Care in Texas Law

Foster care in the state of Texas must comply with both state and federal legislation.

Federal legislation requires that states must coordinate with local educational entities to ensure that children remain in their original school after removal unless for some reason it is not in the child's best interest to do so. The federal law overrides local school district residence or attendance policies that would otherwise force foster children out of their original school.

The states must also ensure that foster children of school age are enrolled in school. Furthermore, federal legislation expands the definition of foster care maintenance payments to include paying for reasonable travel to the child's original school.

According to federal law states must also develop plans for ongoing oversight and coordination of healthcare services for any child in foster care. These programs must ensure oversight of prescription medication and include schedules for initial and follow-up health screenings as well as provisions for how medical information is updated and appropriately shared.

In order to qualify for a foster care program a provider must be at least 21 years of age. They can be married or single but must be willing to attend pre-service training and participate in a home study. They must also undergo a criminal background check.

Prospective foster parents must agree to nonphysical discipline policies and permit fire, health and safety inspections of their home. All pets within the home must be vaccinated and the providers must to obtain and maintain CPR and first aid certification.

There can be no more than six children in a home including the foster parents own children, or any children for whom day care is provided.

Adult foster care provides 24-hour living arrangements with around-the-clock supervision for adults are unable to continue living independently in their own homes is a physical, mental or emotional disabilities or limitations. Providers of adult foster care must live with their clients in the same household and share a common living area. With the exception of family members there can be no more than three adults living in a foster home unless it is licensed by the state. In this arrangement the adult requiring supervision pays the provider for room and board.

Foster Care (Family) in Texas Law

Criminal Procedure


pertaining to healthcare services, hospital, clinic, foster care facility, inquests upon dead bodies

Education Code


pertaining to residential facility, memorandum of understanding regarding exchange of information for students in foster care, admission, exemptions for students under conservatorship of department of family and protective services, texas education agency, texas higher education coordinating board, residential care, exemptions for adopted students, prepaid tuition units, assigned value

Family Code


pertaining to transfer or probation supervision between counties, interim supervision, general standing to file suit, foster parent, net resources, adoption of compact, adoption assistance program, financial and medical assistance, incentives for license child placing agencies, cooperation with department of protective and regulatory services, statistics of abuse and neglect of children, testing, notice, permanency hearings, factors in determining best interest of the child, placement review after final order, service review hearing, allocation of state funds, local accounts, burial expenses for child in foster care, provision of copies of certain records, training in trauma informed programs and services, foster care payments, liability of child's estate for foster care, direct payments, parent or guardian liability, contracts for substitute care and case management services, placement of children, assessing needs of the child, race or ethnicity

Family Code


pertaining to adoptive parent registry, foster parent recruitment, mentorship pilot program, living services program,standards and effectiveness, substitute care, eligibility, permanency care assistance, maximum payment amount, continued eligibility, medical care and educational services for children in foster care, medical services for child abuse and neglect victims, consent for medical care, enrollment and participation in research programs, health passport, judicial review, education passport, provision of medical care in emergency, consent to medical care by foster child

Government Code


pertaining to access to criminal history record information, department of protective and regulatory services, limitation of liability, ensuring appropriate care setting for persons with disabilities, pooled funding for foster care preventative services, search for parent or guardian of a child, reimbursements for uncompensated healthcare costs, foster parents, parental leave for employees, foster care residential contract management, department of family and protective services

Health & Safety Code


pertaining to adult foster care facility, exemptions, residential facility, contents of disclosure statement, third-party management, foster group home, foster family home, child placing agencies, department of aging and disability

Human Resource Code


pertaining to definition of dependent child, department of protective and regulatory services, medical assistance for certain persons making transition from foster care to independent living, independent foster care, medical assistance for certain former foster care adolescents enrolled in higher education, preventative services, child at risk of foster care placement, family and protective services council, federal funding for certain children, federal reimbursement for foster care costs, local accounts, minimum training standards, inspections, public notice and hearing in certain counties, residential childcare, reporting of incidents and violations, use of existing institutions and agencies, investigation database

Insurance Code


pertaining to definition of dependent and related terms

Local Government Code


pertaining to eligible children

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