H. The Indian Child Welfare Act and the ICPC

Because the ICPC is a compact adopted by states as state law, the federal Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA) preempts conflicting state law. Thus, the ICPC does not apply to interstate placements of an Indian child if the placement is being made within an Indian reservation unless:

•   The tribal government requests ICPC services;

•   The tribe has adopted the ICPC; or

•   The tribe has an existing Title IV-E agreement with the state requiring ICPC compliance.

If an Indian child is being placed interstate but not within a reservation, the ICPC applies to that placement. However, the placement requirements of ICWA preempt any ICPC requirements that interfere with or impede the implementation of the placement required by ICWA. See Bench Book chapter on the Indian Child Welfare Act for information about placement preferences and requirements when ICWA is involved.