Texas Child Protection Law Bench Book

2023 version: As effective November 1, 2023

Family Connections

Family Visitation

A. Court Duties

Per Tex. Fam. Code § 263.107, not later than the 30th day after the date DFPS is named temporary managing conservator (TMC) of a child for whom the goal of DFPS is reunification with the parent, DFPS must develop a visitation plan in collaboration with each parent. In determining the frequency and circumstances of visitation, DFPS is to consider the safety and best interest of the child, the child's age, the desires of each parent regarding visitation with the child, the location of each parent and the child, and the resources available to DFPS, including resources to ensure visitation is properly supervised and providing transportation to the visit.

DFPS must file the visitation plan with the court 10 days before the Status Hearing, and the court must review the plan, taking into consideration the factors specified in Tex. Fam. Code § 263.107.

A visitation plan may be amended by mutual agreement of the child's parents and the department or as the department considers necessary to ensure the safety of the child. An amendment to the visitation plan must be in the child's best interest and may not conflict with a court order relating to possession of or access to the child. The department must file a copy of any amended visitation plan with the court. Tex. Fam. Code § 263.107.

Per Tex. Fam. Code § 263.108, after reviewing an original or amended visitation plan, the court must render an order regarding the parent's visitation with a child that the court determines is appropriate. Parents may petition the court to request review and modification of an original or amended plan. Tex. Fam. Code § 263.108(c).

Tex. Fam. Code § 263.109 states that if the court finds that visitation between a child and a parent is not in the child's best interest, the court shall render an order that states the reasons that visitation is not in the best interest of the child, and that outlines specific steps the parent must take to have visitation. DFPS has developed a “No Contact Visitation Plan” that requires documentation of why visitation is not in the child's best interest and what needs to occur in order for contact or visitation to begin. Tex. Fam. Code § 263.109(b). Please see the DFPS No Contact Visitation Plan Form for more information.[283]

Also, if the order requires supervised visitation, it must outline specific steps the parent must take to have the level of supervision reduced. Tex. Fam. Code § 263.109(c).

B. DFPS Best Practice Guide

DFPS issued a Child and Family Visitation Best Practice Guide for the field in 2015.[284] This guide provides Department employees with policy, guidance, and tools to assess the appropriateness of visitation, how to develop the visitation plan, how to engage fathers and other family members in the visitation process, the role of the foster parents, and how to move from one level of supervision to another.

1. Basic Principles Promoted by the Best Practice Guide

a. Visitation is essential for a child's well-being

The primary purpose of visitation is to maintain the parent-child attachment, reduce a child's sense of abandonment, and preserve their sense of belonging as part of a family and community. A child needs to see and have regular contact with their parent(s) and siblings, as these relationships are the foundation of child development.

b.Visitation is fundamental to permanency

Visitation facilitates permanency planning, promotes timely reunification, and helps in the decision-making process to establish alternative permanency plans. Visitation maintains and supports the parent-child relationship necessary for successful reunification.

c. Visitation is vital to a child maintaining family relationships and cultural connections

Maintaining family connections has life-long significance for a child. Regular visitation maintains their relationships with siblings and others who have a significant role in a child's life. When a child loses family connections, they also lose family history, medical history, and cultural history and information. Visitation is considered to be the heart of reunification, but even when reunification is not likely, parents, siblings and extended family continue to be important in a child's life.

d. Visitation and family contact should never be used as a reward or punishment but should always be considered a right of families and children

The absence of regular and frequent parent-child visitation or contact may have serious consequences for both a child and parent(s). Without visitation, the relationship can deteriorate, and both can become emotionally detached. When parent-child attachment suffers, reunification becomes more difficult.

2. Benefits of Parent-Child Visitation

•   Supports parent-child attachment;

•   Eases the pain of separation for all;

•   Maintains and strengthens family relationships;

•   Reassures a child that their parents/primary caregivers are all right and helps the child to not blame themselves for placement in foster care;

•   Supports the family in dealing with changing relationships;

•   Motivates parents to make positive changes in their life by providing reassurance that the parent-child relationship is important for a child's well-being;

•   Provides opportunities for parent(s) to learn and try new skills;

•   Supports a child's adjustment to the foster home;

•   Enables the parent(s) to be active and stay current with their child's development, educational and medical needs, church and community activities;

•   Provides opportunities for parent(s) to assess how their child is doing, and share information about how to meet their child's needs;

•   Assists in the assessment and decision-making process regarding parenting capacities and permanency goals;

•   Reduces the time in out-of-home care; and

•   Increases the likelihood of reunification.

3. Supervision

If DFPS recommends to the court that visits be supervised, the visitation plan should include a summary statement of the assessed safety reasons supervision is necessary. In addition, parent(s) should clearly understand the specific safety factors preventing less restrictive contact with their child and what demonstrated changes will assist the caseworker in being able to make recommendations lifting supervision requirements.

C. Stages of Supervision

The following Stages of Supervision guide was adapted by DFPS and provides descriptions of the levels of supervision. Caseworkers can use this tool for assessment and planning to help determine and clearly communicate the structure of a supervised visitation plan. Additional guidance related to this assessment tool can be found in the 2015 DFPS Child and Family Visitation Best Practice Guide.[285]

D. Parent Information and Observation Form

This information is provided to parents to assist with pleasant and meaningful visits with their child. It was developed in partnership with parents and parent advocates.

•   It is very important for you to attend every visit on time. If you do not do this, your child will be disappointed when they are at the visit and you are not. If you have a problem getting to the visit or know that you are likely to be late, contact your caseworker as soon as you can to inform the caseworker you will be late or are having a problem getting to the visit.

•   It is best not to make promises to your child during visitation, but if you do make a promise, such as “next time I see you I will bring your favorite book from home,” make sure you fulfill that promise.

•   You can bring toys, clothes, and pictures from home to the visit. If you have questions about the appropriateness of an item, contact your caseworker prior to the visit.

•   Show your child affection (i.e., hugs and handholding) during the visit unless you have specifically been ordered not to by the court or your caseworker.

•   The visit will be observed and there are two reasons for this: to ensure the safety and well-being of your child, and to gather information that will help improve future visits.

•   Your child may ask difficult questions such as “when can I come home?” You should not respond with a specific date because that can change along the way and you don't want to disappoint your child. A good response could be “I hope it is soon, but I'm so glad I get to see you now.” Your child will probably ask this several times and possibly every time they talk to you.

•   Your child may also not behave in a way you expect. If your child is fussy or upset, it may be because so much change is happening in your child's life or your child is tired or had a bad day. Take this opportunity to positively comfort, support, and talk to your child about what is going on in their life.

•   If your child talks to you about their foster parent or family, you should listen and respond in a positive way. Although it may be difficult that your child cannot be with you right now, you should be as supportive as possible of the foster parent or family because they are taking care of your child and it is important that your child not feel bad about that. If you do have a concern about the foster parent or family, do not discuss it with your child or in front of your child. Inform the caseworker of your concerns after the visit, and if you have a lawyer, you may want to discuss with him/her as well.

•   If you have questions about the visit or what was observed during the visit, you should feel free to ask the person observing you. If the person observing your visit uses a visitation observation form to document what happens at the visit, you should be given a copy of that form.

•   If you have questions about your case or future visits, ask your caseworker after the visit.

•   Don't talk to your child about your CPS case or caseworker during the visit. Use this opportunity to spend time with your child and enjoy your child's company. If your child asks questions about your case, suggest that the child ask the caseworker. If your child has an attorney ad litem or a CASA volunteer, you might also suggest that your child ask them any case- related questions.

•   You may have a difficult time after and between visits. Talk to people in your life about how you are feeling. It might even be a good idea to tell them about the visit ahead of time, so you can have support ready for you. At the end of your visit, goodbyes can be difficult for you and your child. During the last 5 minutes, plan what you will do on your next visit together. Try putting it on paper and letting the child take it home with them. During the visit you can give your child something from home or draw a picture with them, so they have something to hold onto in between visits. Do not prolong the goodbye as it will make it harder for you and your child.

•   If the visit didn't go as you had hoped or planned, don't be hard on yourself! Learn about what you need to improve and remember that there are no perfect parents. You just need to keep trying to be the best parent you can be for your child!

1. Observation

DFPS has also implemented a visitation observation form that is intended to document what occurs at supervised visits. The observer is asked to fill out responses to certain questions.

After the visitation session, the observer is required to provide the parent or adult with the form, and the parent/adult is asked to sign it. Parents can make notes on the observation form regarding how the visit went, whether the parent has any questions or concerns about the recorded information, and if the parent has anything he/she would like to add about the visit. Please see the Parent/Supportive Adult Visitation Record and Observation Form for more information.[287]

2. DFPS Review and Revision of Visitation Plan

Per DFPS, the visitation plan should be reviewed by DFPS monthly to determine progress, update goals, and determine if it is appropriate to consider changes in supervision, location, and setting. If there has been little or no progress towards developing protective actions and meeting case goals found during two consecutive monthly reviews, the caseworker is directed to initiate a formal or informal family meeting to determine how to modify the visitation plan to include a more intensive level of parent coaching/guidance around visitation.

Permanency Care Assistance (PCA)

A. What Is Permanency Care Assistance?

The Permanency Care Assistance (PCA) Program provides certain benefits and supports to qualifying kinship families who take permanent managing conservatorship (PMC) of a child. PCA families are eligible for:

•   Monthly cash assistance similar to adoption assistance;

•   Medicaid health coverage; and

•   A one-time reimbursement of nonrecurring expenses, including legal fees, incurred in the process of obtaining custody of the child, up to a maximum of $2,000. Tex. Fam. Code § 264.852(d).

The maximum monthly payments are the same as those for adoption assistance and depend upon the child's authorized service level at the time the PCA is negotiated.

Caregivers who apply must be:

•   Related to, or have a longstanding relationship with, the child / children before the child is placed; and

•   Verified by a child placing agency and provide verified foster care for the child for at least six months after verification and before the court awards PMC and dismisses the case.

DFPS may enter into a PCA Agreement with a kinship provider who is the prospective managing conservator of a foster child only if the kinship provider meets the eligibility criteria under federal and state law and DFPS rule. Tex. Fam. Code § 264.852(b). A court may not order DFPS to enter into a PCA agreement with a kinship provider unless the kinship provider meets the eligibility criteria under federal and state law and DFPS rule, including the requirements relating to criminal history background check of a kinship provider. Tex. Fam. Code § 264.852(c).

Special Issue: The Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) must allow a child-placing agency to issue a provisional license for a kinship provider who meets the basic safety requirements provided by Commission rule and the kinship provider issued a provisional license shall complete all licensing requirements within the time provided by the rule.

B. What Should Courts Do?

The court must inform relative and designated caregivers serving as placement for a child of the ability to become a licensed foster parent and apply for PCA at the Adversary Hearing, Status Hearing, and Permanency Hearings Before and After a final order. Tex. Fam. Code § 262.201(n-1); Tex. Fam. Code § 263.202(h)(2)(i); Tex. Fam. Code § 263.306(c)(2); and Tex. Fam. Code § 263.5031(3).

Before awarding PMC to a kinship caregiver under this program and dismissing DFPS from a case, the court should ensure that:

•   DFPS has determined that reunification and adoption are not appropriate permanency options for the child;

•   The caregiver is verified (being verified refers to the family being approved as a foster home under the minimum standards set by Licensing. HHSC licenses child placing agencies, and in turn, child placing agencies verify foster homes);

•   The child has been placed with the verified kin for at least six months following the date of the verification; and

•   DFPS and the kinship caregiver have signed a PCA Agreement, and it is on file prior to the award of PMC to the caregiver; that is, the child must be in the TMC or PMC of DFPS on the day before PMC is transferred to the relative.

The one-year deadline to dismiss a case still applies. For example, if the 12-month deadline is approaching, and a child has not lived with their verified caregiver for at least six months after the verification, the case must be extended under Tex. Fam. Code § 263.401 or PMC must be awarded to DFPS in order to allow sufficient time to satisfy the 6-month verified foster care requirement prior to the relative being awarded PMC.

If a sibling is placed by DFPS in the home of a child who is already the subject of a PCA agreement, the sibling is automatically eligible for PCA benefits. If the caregiver and DFPS agree on the appropriateness of the arrangement and, if DFPS has TMC or PMC of the joining sibling at the time the agreement is signed, the family must enter into a PCA agreement for the sibling before the court awards PMC of the sibling to the kin/caregiver and dismisses DFPS from the case.

A caregiver receiving PCA is not eligible for the Relative and Other Designated Caregiver Program. Relatives who do not meet the eligibility criteria under the PCA program can continue to take advantage of the Relative and Other Designated Caregiver Program.

The maximum monthly amount of assistance payments under a PCA agreement may not exceed the amount of the monthly foster care maintenance payment DFPS would pay to a foster care provider caring for the child for whom the kinship caregiver is providing care. Tex. Fam. Code § 264.854.

Before entering a final order that awards permanent custody of a child in DFPS conservatorship to a relative, the court must verify that the relative was offered the opportunity to become a licensed foster placement to qualify for a PCA agreement and that the relative declined and the child placing agency has been notified of the declination. Tex. Fam. Code § 263.409.

C. How Does PCA Affect Older Youth?

Extended PCA benefits are available to eligible youth to permit them to remain eligible for PCA through the month in which they turn 21 years old. Youth in this category can also apply for Education Training Vouchers (ETV) for vocational or college pursuits by contacting regional PAL staff.

If DFPS first entered into a PCA agreement with a youth's kinship provider after the child's 16th birthday, DFPS may continue to provide PCA payments until the last day of the month of the youth's 21st birthday under Tex. Fam. Code § 264.855, provided the youth or permanent managing conservator submits documentation sufficient to establish that the youth:

•   Regularly attends high school (or a program leading toward a high school diploma or high school equivalency certificate);

•   Regularly attends an institution of higher education (or a postsecondary vocational or technical program);

•   Works at least 80 hours a month;

•   Participates in a program or activity that promotes employment or removes barriers to it; or

•   Is incapable of performing the activities described above because of a documented medical condition.

The Preventing Sex Trafficking and Strengthening Families Act (federal legislation passed by U.S. Congress on September 29, 2014) allows for the preservation of a child's eligibility for PCA payments in the event the caregiver dies or becomes incapacitated if a PCA-Successor (a person appointed to permanently care for the child in the event that the caregiver is no longer able) replaces the caregiver as the child's legal guardian.

PCA payments may continue to a PCA-Successor if all of the following conditions are met:

•   The kinship caregiver completes an amendment to the Permanency Care Assistance Agreement to name a potential PCA-Successor to receive PCA benefits on the child's behalf in the event of their death or incapacitation;

•   The PCA-Successor submits to DFPS the required background check information and that information meets DFPS standards;

•   The PCA-Successor signs a Permanency Care Assistance Agreement with DFPS; and

•   The PCA-Successor submits to DFPS proof demonstrating legal custody of the child was given by the court.

The PCA-Successor cannot begin receiving PCA payments from DFPS until the PCA-Successor signs a Permanency Care Assistance Agreement and assumes legal custody of the child. If the PCA-Successor signs the Permanency Care Assistance Agreement after being given legal custody of the child by the court, DFPS may grant retroactive benefits back to the date legal custody was granted, for a period not to exceed 12 months.

The terms and conditions of the PCA Agreement originally signed by the kinship caregiver will also apply to the PCA-Successor.

D. What About Social Security Administration Benefits and Child Support?

While kinship families serve as foster parents, they receive a monthly foster care payment from DFPS. If the child in the kinship family's care receives Social Security Administration (SSA) benefits also or if child support monies have been court-ordered, DFPS receives and uses these funds to offset the cost of the child's foster care payments. The kinship family will receive the foster care payments in lieu of the child's SSA benefits or child support they may have previously received from DFPS. When the court gives PMC to the kinship family and PCA benefits begin, the kinship family must apply with the SSA to become the representative payee of the child's SSA benefits and arrangements must also be made for the kinship family to receive any child support payments that have been court-ordered.

E. Resources

Texas DFPS

•   Permanency Care Assistance webpage[288]

•   Permanency Care Assistance: Key Issues for Judges[289]

Center for Public Policy Priorities, Fostering Connections to Success and Increasing Adoptions Act: What it Means for Texas[290]

Supreme Court Children's Commission, Chart: Financial and Other Supports Available to Youth Who Exit DFPS Conservatorship[291]

Relative and Other Designated Caregiver (RODC) Program

A. What is the Relative and Other Designated Caregiver Program?

The Relative and Other Designated Caregiver Program (RODC) supports continuity and stability for children in the conservatorship of DFPS by providing financial assistance to eligible kinship caregivers. Under the RODC, DFPS may enter into Caregiver Assistance Agreements (CAA) with a relative or other designated caregiver who has not been verified as a foster parent or otherwise licensed to provide 24-hour residential childcare to provide monetary assistance for caring for children in the Temporary Managing Conservatorship of the Department.

B. Who Qualifies?

Caregivers are eligible for the RODC payment if:

•   The child they are caring for is currently in the temporary managing conservatorship (TMC) of the Department;

•   They have an approved home assessment;

•   They are not already verified as foster parents or as a group home and receiving foster care maintenance payments;

•   They sign and abide by a Caregiver Assistance Agreement; and

•   The total household income does not exceed 300% of the federal poverty limit.

C. How Much is the Monthly Payment?

The RODC Payment is currently set at $12.67 per day, per child; this is approximately $385.388 per month, per child.

D. How Long Can the Caregiver Receive Payments?

The monthly reimbursement payments are available for up to 12 months after placement of the child in the caregiver's home with a one-time, six-month extension for good cause.

E. Examples of Circumstances that Justify Good Cause for Payments to Go Beyond 12 Months

•   Attempting to find a previously absent parent of the child;

•   Awaiting the expiration of the timeline for an appeal of an order in a suit affecting the parent-child relationship;

•   Allowing additional time for a kin caregiver to complete the approval process for verification or adoption of the child;

•   Waiting for approval of a child's placement from another state;

•   A delayed determination of the child's Indian Child status, or when awaiting the approval of the Indian Child's Tribe; or

•   Any other circumstance involving the child or caregiver that DFPS deems as justification for an extension.

F. What if the Child Moves?

The payments follow the child, but the duration of the payment stays the same. For example, if a child lives with an eligible grandmother for 4 months and then moves to an eligible aunt's home for 8 months, the 12-month payment period does not restart for the aunt.

G. How is the RODC Payment Dispersed?

The payment is paid monthly similar to foster care payments, but because it is considered a reimbursement, it is paid in arrears. In other words, the payments are determined by the number of days the child was with the kinship caregiver the previous month. Payments are processed for care days in the prior month on or about the 15th of each month and disbursed at the end of that month for care days in the prior month.

H. Should Relatives Still Apply for TANF before Receiving the RODC Payment?

Grandparents are no longer required to apply for and be denied the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) Grandparent Grant (a one-time payment of $1,000 per sibling group) before qualifying for the RODC Payment. Grandparents should still apply for the TANF Grandparent Grant and may receive it in addition to the RODC payment.

I. What if a Caregiver Receives PMC of the Child?

If a caregiver receives PMC of a child, the caregiver can request the $500 annual reimbursement per child for child-related costs. DFPS can reimburse caregivers in this amount for up to three years or until the child turns 18, whichever comes first.

J. What Can Judges Do to Support RODC Payments?

•   Be familiar with the eligibility criteria;

•   Know that DFPS can only make the payment based on a reimbursement process; and

•   Understand that if courts make orders regarding different dates of payments, this may delay the payment process for other relative caregivers, since every region is processing a large number of relative caregiver payments every month according to a set schedule.

K. DFPS Must Keep Track

DFPS is required to publish an annual report on the funds disbursed, permanency outcomes for the children who are placed with relatives, and the length of time between the beginning of RODC and the award of PMC to the caregiver. Tex. Fam. Code § 264.762.

Mexican Consular Relations

A. Background

DFPS has agreements with the Mexican Consular Offices to help carry out DFPS' obligations under the Consular Convention between the United States of American and the United Mexican States signed at Mexico City on August 12, 1942, and the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations, signed in Vienna on April 24, 1963.

There are 11 Consular Offices throughout the state. Please see the Mexican Consulates in Texas Jurisdiction Map and the Texas Practice Guide for Child Protective Services Attorneys Consulates of Mexico in Texas for a directory of offices and contacts.[292]

B. Definitions

For the purposes of the agreements, the following definitions apply.

Mexican Minor” means an unmarried individual, under the age of eighteen, who is a national of Mexico or a national of Mexico and another country (or countries) as long as one of those countries is not the United States of America.

Mexican Family” means a family with at least one parent who was either born and/or currently resides in Mexico, regardless of their immigration status in the United States of America.

Custodian” means a person taking responsibility for a Mexican Minor's care.

DIF” means the Agency for Integral Family Development. This is the agency in Mexico which is responsible for child welfare.

C. Required Procedures

Identifying Minors Born in Mexico

•   DFPS will make best efforts to determine a child's country of birth as soon as possible after a child comes into DFPS custody.

•   If a child reported to be born in Mexico has no birth record, the DFPS caseworker will request certified copies of the Mexican birth certificates. DFPS will seek assistance from the Consulate in order to obtain certified copies of birth certificates, an alternate record of birth, or a record of documentation that no birth record exists, from Mexico.

Notification to the Consulate

•   DFPS has the duty to notify the Consulate – and will endeavor to do so in writing – when DFPS assumes custody of a Mexican Minor.

•   DFPS will endeavor to provide the following information in its notice to the Consulate, when available:

◦   name of the Mexican Minor;

◦   date of birth of the Mexican Minor;

◦   names of the parents or custodian; and

◦   name and phone number of the caseworker and supervisor responsible for the DFPS case.

•   Once DFPS assumes custody of a Mexican Minor, DFPS will endeavor to send notice without delay, by facsimile, mail or email, to the Consulate with responsibility for the county where the DFPS legal case is filed.

Consular Referrals

•   If DFPS takes custody of a child of a Mexican Family, the agency will make best efforts to provide the child's parents or custodian with a referral to the Mexican Consulate, regardless of the child's citizenship status.

•   DFPS will also make best efforts to provide the child´s parents written information in Spanish and English about the legal proceeding filed by DFPS.

Confidentiality and Additional Information

•   With respect to any notice, communications, records or other information shared pursuant to these Procedures, the Consulate is subject to the confidentiality provisions established in federal and state of Texas law; this includes the confidentiality provisions in the Texas Family and Human Resources Codes.

•   Subject to these confidentiality provisions, the Consulate may contact DFPS to obtain additional information regarding a child welfare legal proceeding filed by DFPS involving a Mexican Minor.


•   A consular officer has the right to interview a Mexican Minor in DFPS legal custody. In order to arrange for an interview, the Consulate must contact the DFPS caseworker or supervisor assigned to the legal case.

Special Immigrant Juvenile Status

•   When a Mexican Minor in the custody of DFPS is eligible to obtain the Special Immigrant Juvenile Status (SIJS), pursuant to 8 U.S.C. §1101(a)(27)(J) or other immigration relief, DFPS will seek assistance from the Consulate in order to obtain the necessary documentation from Mexico, including a certified copy of the birth record, an alternate record of birth, or a record of documentation that no birth record exists.

Assistance Provided by DIF

•   DFPS will seek assistance from the Consulate in order to obtain from DIF the appropriate socio-economic (home) studies of families in Mexico who may be eligible to obtain custody of a child in the custody of DFPS. Upon receipt of the home studies, the Consulate will immediately transmit the information to the DFPS caseworker responsible for the case.

•   DFPS will provide the Consulate all relevant information to assist DIF in locating a parent or family member of a child in DFPS custody who resides in Mexico.

•   When a child in DFPS custody is placed in the custody of a person who lives in Mexico, DFPS will request the Consulate to implement the necessary coordination measures with DIF, in order to carry out the repatriation or placement of said child, procuring their welfare and providing them with all the necessary services.

•   DFPS will request the Consulate to obtain assistance from DIF for the reunification of the minor with the relative in Mexico that will assume custody and to take the necessary measures to ensure the welfare of the minor.

Amendments of Birth Certificates

•   DFPS will work to obtain an amended birth certificate for a minor who will be placed in Mexico with a parent(s) whose name does not appear on the birth certificate, in accordance with the applicable law and any court order regarding parentage. DFPS may obtain assistance from the Consulate for this purpose.

Locating Persons in Mexico

•   DFPS will seek assistance from the Consulate in order to locate parents residing in Mexico to facilitate notice and service of process of a child welfare proceeding brought by DFPS. DFPS may also request assistance from the Consulate for locating extended family members or other persons who may be able to provide a placement or otherwise support a child's permanent plan.

Mutual Exchange of Contact Information

•   DFPS will exchange with the Consulate the names, titles, and contact information for appropriate staff to contact for issues relating to these Procedures, and update that information as necessary.

Review of Procedures

•   DFPS staff may ask the Consulate to review at minimum annually the issues arising from the application of these Procedures. The Consul General and the Commissioner of DFPS, or whoever they designate, may hold consultations as often as is necessary in order to review issues in implementation of the Procedures and discussion of cases of particular import.

Outreach and Training Activities

•   DFPS will participate in joint outreach activities focused on Mexican communities in Texas, to promote healthy families, provide education about foster care and adoption opportunities, permanency, child abuse prevention strategies and ongoing initiatives of mutual interest. In addition, DFPS will collaborate with the Consulate to develop and distribute training and information on best practices regarding Mexican Minors in Texas.

Contact by Consulate

•   Notwithstanding these Procedures, the Consulate may contact, at any time as appropriate, the DFPS Commissioner or Deputy Commissioner, DFPS Office of General Counsel, the Court Appointed Special Advocate, and/or Office of Attorney General of the State of Texas.

Terms of Procedures

•   These Procedures will be in force from the date of issuance unless modified in writing by the DFPS Commissioner or the Commissioner's designee.