Home Table of Contents

Rule 408. Certification to Adopt

Arizona Revised Statutes AnnotatedRules of Procedure for the Juvenile CourtEffective: July 1, 2022

Arizona Revised Statutes Annotated
Rules of Procedure for the Juvenile Court (Refs & Annos)
Part IV. Adoptions
2. Adoption Proceedings
Effective: July 1, 2022
17B A.R.S. Juv.Ct.Rules of Proc., Rule 408
Formerly cited as AZ ST JUV CT Rule 77
Rule 408. Certification to Adopt
(a) Application for Certification. Any prospective adoptive parent must submit a written application for certification and be certified by the court as acceptable to adopt children, as provided by A.R.S. § 8-105, before filing a petition to adopt. This requirement does not apply to individuals identified in A.R.S. § 8-105(N).
(b) Dismissal of the Application Due to Insufficient Information. If the court is unable to certify the applicant as acceptable to adopt a child because the application lacks the information required by A.R.S. § 8-105, the court may dismiss the application or permit the applicant to submit supplemental information. If the court dismisses the application, the applicant may submit a subsequent application, in which event the court may consider information contained in the original application.
(c) Court Action. No later than 60 days after receiving the investigative report and recommendation required by A.R.S. § 8-105, the court may:
(1) certify that the applicant is acceptable to adopt children;
(2) require further investigation if it finds that additional information is necessary for making an appropriate decision regarding certification; or
(3) determine that the applicant is unacceptable to adopt children, in which event it must notify the applicant and the person, department, agency, or entity responsible for preparing the certification report of the court's determination, the reason for the denial, and the applicant's right to a hearing on the denial of certification.
(d) Motion for Hearing on Denial of Certification. The applicant may file a motion requesting a hearing on the denial of certification. The motion must be filed no later than 30 days after entry of the minute entry or order denying certification. The court must set an evidentiary hearing that begins no later than 60 days after the filing of the motion. The court must notify the applicant and the person, division, agency, or entity responsible for preparing the certification report of the location, date, and time of the hearing.
(e) Pretrial Conference. On request of a party or on its own, the court may set a pretrial conference.
(f) Access to Information. The applicant may obtain a copy of the information contained in the court's file as prescribed by law. Before providing a copy, the clerk must redact the results of the criminal background check, information obtained from DCS records, and information provided by references, other than names.
(g) Burden of Proof. The burden is on the applicant, or any other party ordered by the court, to show acceptability to adopt by a preponderance of the evidence.
(h) Procedure. The hearing must be informal, and the court must consider all evidence admitted under Rule 104(b), including hearsay. Documents that the parties want the court to consider must be marked and entered into evidence. The court for good cause may continue the hearing.
(i) Findings and Orders. The court must make specific findings of fact concerning the applicant's acceptability to adopt based upon the evidence presented at the hearing. All findings and orders must be in a signed minute entry or written order. The court must advise the applicant of the right to appeal an adverse ruling.

Credits

Added Dec. 8, 2021, effective July 1, 2022.
17B A. R. S. Juv. Ct. Rules of Proc., Rule 408, AZ ST JUV CT Rule 408
State Court Rules are current with amendments received through November 15, 2023. The Code of Judicial Administration is current with amendments received through November 1, 2023.
End of Document