Once a child has been adjudicated dependent, the child welfare agency works with the parents and youth, and their legal advocates, to develop a plan that outlines the types of services that the child and his family will receive, such as parenting classes, mental health or substance abuse treatment, and family counseling; reunification goals, including visitation schedules and a target date for a child's return home; as well as concurrent plans for an alternative permanent placement options should reunification goals not be met. The agency agrees to provide the services and the parents must agree to work on their assigned tasks. Case plans typically include requirements parents must meet before their children can return to them. The court reviews and may modify the recommended case plan.
A document prepared by the Department of Children and Families, that follows the child from the provision of voluntary services through any dependency foster care, or termination of parental rights.