110 CMR 9.05 - Court Approval Requirement for Closing Certain Cases

When a decision is made to close any case in which the Department has court ordered custody of child(ren), the Department will not close the case until the Department seeks from the court a return of full custody to the parents, and dismissal of the case.


By statute (M.G.L. c. 119, § 26) the Department does have the option to close cases by "administrative decision" without court action. However, in the interest of consistent casework and in order to afford Department social workers maximum support in making such decisions, the Department will seek the court's approval of the decision to close the case. In these instances, a member of the Department's legal staff will file a Motion to Dismiss the court case. If the court approves the Department's motion, the Department will proceed to close the case. If the court declines to make any ruling on the Department's motion in light of the Department's administrative prerogative contained in M.G.L. c. 119, § 26, the Department will proceed to close the case. If the court denies the Department's motion, the Department will not proceed to close the case.


110 CMR 9.05

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