Private Organization Accreditation

HeartShare assist individuals with developmental disabilities through education, day, residential and recreation programs, case management, and health services, and provides foster care/adoption services, counseling, after school and energy assistance programs, and programs for people with HIV/AIDS.


Domestic Violence Intervention Services, Inc.

Donna Mathews, Associate Director

Becoming accredited and maintaining our accreditation through COA has helped us increase our professionalism and thereby provide better services to domestic violence, sexual assault, stalking, and dating violence survivors.
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OC 96.53: Background studies on the child and consents in outgoing Convention cases

Background Studies on the Child and Consents in Outgoing Convention Cases

Table of Evidence

Self-Study Evidence On-Site Evidence On-Site Activities
  • Describe any child study requirements specific to each State and each country where the organization provides intercountry adoption services.
  • Describe any state requirements for providing birth parents with legal counsel and providing disclosure that the child will be adopted internationally.
  • Describe the organization's overall approach to preparing children for adoption including the transition to the receiving country. 96.54 (g)
  • Describe how the organization ensures that required post-placement supervision and reporting will be conducted. 96.54 (i)
  • Provide any additional information that would increase the Evaluator’s understanding of your level of compliance with the standards.
  • Procedure for performing child background study in outgoing cases 96.53 (a)
  • Procedures for reviewing and approving child studies 96.53 (b)
  • Checklist, tool, or other documentation used in the review and approval of child studies 96.53 (b)
  • Policy and procedures for obtaining consents 96.53 (c)
  • Policy and procedures for consideration of the wishes of a child over 12 years of age 96.53 (d)
  • Procedure for transmitting information to appropriate authority of the Convention country 96.53 (e)
No On-Site Evidence
  • Interview:
    1. Supervisors 96.53 (a), 96.53 (b), 96.53 (c), 96.53 (d)
    2. Personnel 96.53 (a), 96.53 (b), 96.53 (c), 96.53 (d), 96.53 (e)
    3. CEO 96.53 (c), 96.53 (d)
    4. Clients 96.53 (c)
  • Review case records 96.53 (a), 96.53 (c), 96.53 (d)
  • Review case records or other documentation of the review and approval of child studies 96.53 (b)

  • C
    OC 96.53.a

    The agency or person takes all appropriate measures to ensure that a child background study is performed that includes information about the child’s identity, adoptability, background, social environment, family history, medical history (including that of the child’s family), and any special needs of the child. The child background study must include the following:

    (1) information that demonstrates that consents were obtained in accordance with paragraph (c) of this section;

    (2) information that demonstrates consideration of the child’s wishes and opinions in accordance with paragraph (d) of this section and;

    (3) information that confirms that the child background study was prepared either by an exempted provider or by an individual who meets the requirements set forth in Section 96.37(g).

  • C
    OC 96.53.b

    Where the child background study is not prepared in the first instance by an accredited agency, the agency or person ensures that the child background study is reviewed and approved in writing by an accredited agency. The written approval must include a determination that the background study includes all the information required by paragraph (a) of this section.

  • C
    OC 96.53.c

    The agency or person takes all appropriate measures to ensure that consents have been obtained as follows:

    (1) the persons, institutions, and authorities whose consent is necessary for adoption have been counseled as necessary and duly informed of the effects of their consent, in particular, whether or not an adoption will result in the termination of the legal relationship between the child and his or her family of origin;

    (2) all such persons, institutions, and authorities have given their consents;

    (3) the consents have been expressed or evidenced in writing in the required legal form, have been given freely, were not induced by payments or compensation of any kind, and have not been withdrawn;

    (4) the consent of the mother, where required, was executed after the birth of the child;

    (5) the child, as appropriate in light of his or her age and maturity, has been counseled and duly informed of the effects of the adoption and of his or her consent to the adoption; and

    (6) the child’s consent, where required, has been given freely, in the required legal form, and expressed or evidenced in writing and not induced by payment or compensation of any kind.

  • C
    OC 96.53.d

    If the child is twelve years of age or older, or as otherwise provided by State law, the agency or person gives due consideration to the child’s wishes or opinions before determining that an intercountry placement is in the child’s best interests.

  • C
    OC 96.53.e

    The agency or person prior to the child’s adoption takes all appropriate measures to transmit to the Central Authority or other competent authority or accredited bodies of the Convention country the child background study, proof that the necessary consents have been obtained, and the reasons for its determination that the placement is in the child’s best interests. In doing so, the agency or person, as required by Article 16(2) of the Convention, does not reveal the identity of the mother or the father if these identities may not be disclosed under State law.

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