Conceptual Model of Judicial Decision-Making and Hearing Quality in Child Welfare

This new brief presents a conceptual model that shows how aspects of the child welfare court process relate to case outcomes for children and families. This model can help researchers, practitioners, and policymakers better understand the child welfare court process … Read More

Child Welfare Court Cases Involving Prenatal Substance Use: Policy Considerations

State supreme and appellate courts presiding over civil child protection cases often decide legal issues relating to a mother’s prenatal use of substances. As courts answer questions that arise during child welfare proceedings, they often interpret state civil child abuse … Read More

Opioids and the Courts- Difficult Conversations

The National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges (NCJFCJ) with support from the State Justice Institute (SJI) hosted a series of five webinars titled Opioids and the Courts- Difficult Conversations. The NCJFCJ and expert faculty explored challenges associated with referring children and … Read More

Using a Trauma-Informed Approach With Parents of Color in Family Court

A Report by Tricia Stephens, LCSW-R, Ph.D. Shifting to more trauma-informed practices in family court has been shown to improve outcomes for families. A report presented on the Rise website details the importance of using a trauma-informed approach in working … Read More

Family First Planning & Readiness Toolkit

The Family First Prevention Services Act is a unique opportunity to implement more prevention-oriented and family-centered child welfare systems. The tools in this kit align with the first phase of Family First Implementation: planning and readiness. These Chapin Hall tools … Read More

Enhanced Resource Guidelines

Enhanced Resource Guidelines – Improving Court Practice in Child Abuse and Neglect Cases

The National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges (NCJFCJ) has announced the release of the Enhanced version of the Resource Guidelines to improve court practice in child abuse and neglect cases, 20 years after the original publication. “The Enhanced Resource Guidelines will serve as the … Read More

Supporting Remote Family Time

Supporting Remote Family Time During the Pandemic and Beyond: The Judge’s Role

This Judge’s Action Alert highlights: trends in use of remote family time by the legal child welfare community during the pandemic;  benefits and drawbacks of using remote family time approaches;  keys to effective remote family time;  how judges can support remote family … Read More

Identifying Effective Counter-Trafficking Programs and Practices in the U.S.: Legislative, Legal, and Public Opinion Strategies that Work

Identifying Effective Counter-Trafficking Programs and Practices in the U.S.: Legislative, Legal, and Public Opinion Strategies that WorkBouche, Vanessa. Farrell, Amy. Wittmer, Dana.2015 After more than a decade of sustained efforts to combat human trafficking in the United States, it is necessary to step back … Read More


HOW AND WHY TO INVOLVE THE COURTS IN YOUR CHILD AND FAMILY SERVICES REVIEW: Suggestions for Agency Administrators As the third Round of Federal Child and Family Service Reviews (CFSR) begins, this paper describes how involving courts and attorneys in the CFSR can support … Read More

Working with the Courts in Child Protection

This manual provides the basic information needed by CPS caseworkers to work successfully with the courts. It introduces concepts and terminology associated with the courts, describes the key court processes, and presents practical information to help caseworkers prepare for what … Read More