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§4.09 Findings and Orders

[1] Findings When Petition Is Sustained
[2] Finding of Prima Facie Evidence
[3] Findings When Allegations Are Not Proved

[1] Findings When Petition Is Sustained

To sustain the petition, you must find [WIC §§355(a), 356; CRC 5.684(f)]:

  • One or more of the allegations of the petition are true as proved by a preponderance of the evidence;
  • The child is described by one or more specific subsections of WIC §300, noting the specific subsections that apply [see Part 2, §4.02];
  • Notice was given as required by law; and
  • The child’s birthdate and county of residence are correct.

Review Question Review Question

If you sustain the petition at the jurisdiction hearing, you must:

  1. Find that the child is described by one or more specific subsections of WIC §300; and
  2. Declare the child to be a dependent of the juvenile court.

True
False


REFERENCE >> For a form of findings and orders after a jurisdiction hearing, see form JV-412.


[2] Finding of Prima Facie Evidence

You may find prima facie evidence that a child is described by WIC §300(a), (b), or (d) [see Part 2, §4.02] if you find, based on expert testimony, that an injury or detrimental condition would not have occurred without unreasonable or neglectful acts or omissions by a parent, guardian, or custodian. [WIC §355.1(a).]

Similarly, you may find prima facie evidence that a child is described by WIC §300(a)(d) by finding that a parent, guardian, custodian, or co-resident [WIC §355.1(d)]:

  • Was previously convicted of sexual abuse;
  • Was found in a prior dependency proceeding to have committed sexual abuse; or
  • Is required to register as a sex offender.

Such a finding of prima facie evidence creates a rebuttable presumption of jurisdiction, shifting the burden of producing evidence to the parent or guardian. [See WIC §355.1(c), (d).]

[3] Findings When Allegations Are Not Proved

If you determine that the allegations are not proved, you must [WIC §§355(a), 356, 361.1(a); CRC 5.684(h)]:

  • Dismiss the petition;
  • Return the child home to the prior custodial parent or guardian immediately, or within two working days of the finding, unless the parent or guardian and the agency with custody agree to a later release; and
  • Find the following:
    • Allegations of the petition are not proved by a preponderance of the evidence;
    • Notice was given as required by law; and
    • The child’s birthdate and county of residence are correct.

   
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© 2006 by Judicial Council of California
updated as of January 1, 2012