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List of Enacted State Safe Haven Legislation

CWLA Summary for Indiana

Which babies may be relinquished?
  • Child is, or appears to be, not more than 45 days old.
Who may relinquish a baby?
  • Parent:
    • Knowingly or intentionally left the child with an emergency medical services provider. (In another reference, "voluntarily left the child.")
    • Did not express an intent to return for the child.
What are the incentives for a person to relinquish a baby at a Safe Haven?
  • Anonymity:
    • Relinquisher is not required to disclose the parent's name or their name.
  • Protection from Liability:
    • Defense to prosecution if child is relinquished in accordance with this law.
Who can accept a relinquished baby?
  • Emergency medical services provider.
What are the responsibilities of a Safe Haven?
  • Take custody of the child.
  • Perform any act necessary to protect the child's physical health or safety.
  • Immediately notify local child protection service.
Is the Safe Haven protected from liability for its actions?
  • No mention of safe haven liability.
Care for the Child/Placement for Adoption
  • Emergency medical services provider shall, without a court order, take custody of the child.
  • Local Child Protection Service shall assume the care, control, and custody of child immediately after receiving notice.
  • Child shall be treated as a child taken into custody without a court order except that efforts to locate the child's parents or reunify the child's family are not necessary, if the court makes a finding to that effect.
  • Must call the Missing Persons Clearinghouse to insure the child is not a missing child
  • Attorney for the County Office of Family and Children shall, without unnecessary delay, request the juvenile court to:
    • Authorize the filing of a petition alleging that the child is a child in need of services.
    • Hold an initial hearing not later than the next business day after child is taken into custody.
      • Emergency medical services provider has the right to be heard at the initial hearing, but court is not required to notify provider of custody proceedings.
    • Appoint a guardian ad litem for the child.
  • Juvenile Court shall hold an initial hearing on each petition.
  • Summons shall be issued for:
    • The child
    • The child's parent, guardian, custodian, or guardian ad litem
    • Any other person necessary for the proceedings
  • If the parent of a relinquished child does not disclose the parent's name, the court is not required to notify the parent of court proceedings.
  • Initial hearing on petition will be held on the next business day after the emergency medical services provider takes the child into custody. If the court is unavailable for a hearing on the next business day, the hearing must be held not later than the third business day after the child is taken into custody.

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