Texas Family Code

Sec. § 261.203
Information Relating to Child Fatality


(a)

Not later than the fifth day after the date the department receives a request for information about a child fatality with respect to which the department is conducting an investigation of alleged abuse or neglect, the department shall release:

(1)

the age and sex of the child;

(2)

the date of death;

(3)

whether the state was the managing conservator of the child at the time of the child’s death; and

(4)

whether the child resided with the child’s parent, managing conservator, guardian, or other person entitled to possession of the child at the time of the child’s death.

(b)

If, after a child abuse or neglect investigation described by Subsection (a) is completed, the department determines a child’s death or a child’s near fatality was caused by abuse or neglect, the department on request shall promptly release investigation information not prohibited from release under federal law, including the following information:

(1)

the information described by Subsection (a), if not previously released to the person requesting the information;

(2)

information on whether a child’s death or near fatality:

(A)

was determined by the department to be attributable to abuse or neglect; or

(B)

resulted in a criminal investigation or the filing of criminal charges if known at the time the investigation is completed;

(3)

for cases in which the child’s death or near fatality occurred while the child was living with the child’s parent, managing conservator, guardian, or other person entitled to possession of the child:

(A)

a summary of any previous reports of abuse or neglect of the child or another child made while the child was living with that parent, managing conservator, guardian, or other person entitled to possession of the child;

(B)

the disposition of any report under Paragraph (A);

(C)

a description of any services, including family-based safety services, that were provided or offered by the department to the child or the child’s family as a result of any report under Paragraph (A) and whether the services were accepted or declined; and

(D)

the results of any risk or safety assessment completed by the department relating to the child; and

(4)

for a case in which the child’s death or near fatality occurred while the child was in substitute care with the department or with a residential child-care provider regulated under Chapter 42 (Regulation of Certain Facilities, Homes, and Agencies That Provide Child-care Services), Human Resources Code, the following information:

(A)

the date the substitute care provider with whom the child was residing at the time of death or near fatality was licensed or verified;

(B)

a summary of any previous reports of abuse or neglect investigated by the department relating to the substitute care provider, including the disposition of any investigation resulting from a report;

(C)

any reported licensing violations, including notice of any action taken by the department regarding a violation; and

(D)

records of any training completed by the substitute care provider while the child was placed with the provider.

(c)

If the department is unable to release the information required by Subsection (b) before the 11th day after the date the department receives a request for the information or the date the investigation of the child fatality is completed, whichever is later, the department shall inform the person requesting the information of the date the department will release the information.

(d)

Repealed by Acts 2015, 84th Leg., R.S., Ch. 944 , Sec. 86(7), eff. September 1, 2015.

(e)

Before the department releases any information under Subsection (b), the department shall redact from the records any information the release of which would:

(1)

identify:

(A)

the individual who reported the abuse or neglect; or

(B)

any other individual other than the deceased child or an alleged perpetrator of the abuse or neglect;

(2)

jeopardize an ongoing criminal investigation or prosecution;

(3)

endanger the life or safety of any individual; or

(4)

violate other state or federal law.

(f)

The executive commissioner of the Health and Human Services Commission shall adopt rules to implement this section.
Added by Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 779 (S.B. 1050), Sec. 2, eff. September 1, 2009.
Amended by:
Acts 2015, 84th Leg., R.S., Ch. 253 (S.B. 949), Sec. 1, eff. September 1, 2015.
Acts 2015, 84th Leg., R.S., Ch. 944 (S.B. 206), Sec. 86(7), eff. September 1, 2015.
Source

Last accessed
Jun. 7, 2021