Friday, July 08, 2005

Dependency - Appeal of Family Service Plan

Sanner v. DPW - Commonwealth Court - July 6, 2005

In dependency case, lower court entered an order approving a family service plan (FSP) recommended by country child welfare agency.

Appellant/mother was dissatisfied with some aspects of court-mandated plan but never challenged the court order, by appeal or otherwise. Rather, mother filed an appeal of the plan with DPW.

Held, appeals of FSPs to DPW are limited to the grounds set out in 55 Pa. Code sec. 3130.62(a)(1) and (2).

  • denial, reduction, discontinuance, suspension or termination of service
  • county agency failure to act on request for service w/reasonable promptness Here, mother's appeal challenged substantive aspects of the FSP. Such an appeal is not reviewable by DPW but must be challenged by an appeal of the court order approving and mandating the FSP.

Donald Marritz, MidPenn Legal Services