2010 Georgia Code
TITLE 15 - COURTS
CHAPTER 11 - JUVENILE PROCEEDINGS
ARTICLE 1 - JUVENILE PROCEEDINGS
PART 1 - GENERAL PROVISIONS
§ 15-11-14 - Emergency care and supervision of child by Department of Human Services; search for care provider; shelter care; medical treatment; liability
. Emergency care and supervision of child by Department of Human Services; search for care provider; shelter care; medical treatment; liability
(a) Notwithstanding Code Section 15-11-45
or any other provision of law, the Department of Human Services is authorized to provide emergency care and supervision to any child without seeking a court order for a period not to exceed seven days when:
(1) As a result of an emergency or illness, the person who has physical and legal custody of the child or children is unable to provide for the care and supervision of the child or children, and such person or a law enforcement officer, emergency personnel employed by a licensed ambulance provider, fire rescue personnel, or a hospital administrator or his or her designee requests that the department exercise such emergency custody; and
(2) The child or children are not at imminent risk of abuse or neglect, other than the risks arising from being without a caretaker.
During such period, the department shall endeavor to place the child or children with a relative of the parent or guardian, in shelter care, or in emergency foster care or shall make other appropriate placement arrangements. The department shall have the same rights and powers with regard to the child or children as does the custodial parent or other legal custodian.
(b) Immediately upon receiving custody of the child or children, the department shall begin a diligent search for a relative or other designee of the parent who can provide for the care and supervision of the child or children.
(c) At any time during such seven-day period, upon the parent or guardian's notification to the department that the parent or guardian, or a relative or designee thereof, is able to provide care to and exercise control over the child or children, the department shall release the child or children to the person having custody of the child or children at the time the child or children were taken into the custody of the department or to such person's relative or designee except as provided in subsection (d) of this Code section.
(d) Upon the expiration of such seven-day period, if the child or children have not been released pursuant to subsection (c) of this Code section or if the department determines that there is an issue of neglect, abandonment, or abuse, the department shall promptly contact a juvenile court intake officer or bring the child or children before the juvenile court pursuant to Code Section 15-11-47
. If, upon making an investigation, the intake or other authorized officer of the court finds that shelter care is warranted for the child or children, then, for purposes of this chapter, the child or children shall be deemed to have been placed in shelter care at the time such finding was made. The department may take such other and further actions under this article and all other provisions of law, as are authorized and appropriate, with regard to the child or children.
(e) During the period when a child is in the care and supervision of the department pursuant to this Code section, the department shall have the same authority to consent to medical treatment for the child as does the child's custodial parent or other legal custodian.
(f) The department and its successors, agents, assigns, and employees shall be immune from any and all liability for providing care and supervision for a child pursuant to subsection (a) of this Code section, for consenting to medical treatment for the child pursuant to subsection (e) of this Code section, and for releasing the child pursuant to subsection (c) of this Code section.
Graham Syfert - Jacksonville Lawyer