Other Roles and Responsibilities

  1. Transitional Arrangements
  2. Permanency Case Management
  3. Legal Issues
  4. Resolving conflict
  5. Other Roles and Responsibilities
  6. Background
  7. Definitions
  8. APPENDIX 1: Packaged Care Service Model

Relevant statutory powers exercised by FACS

FACS is a statutory agency with the exercise of specific statutory powers including responsibility for child protection and OOHC. The following is a list of some of these powers relevant to the Permanency Support Program.

Table 2: Statutory Powers exercised by FACS

Give effect to principles of the Care Act Promote the development, adoption and evaluation of policies and procedures that accord with the objects and principles of the Care Act.
Provide services under the Care Act Provide services that accord with the objects and principles of the Care Act.
Steward the service system Promote a partnership approach between the government and non-government sector agencies responsible for and dealing with children and young persons who are in need of care and protection.
Conduct (ROSH) assessment Receiving, investigating and assessing risk of significant harm (ROSH) reports.
Protection of a child Take whatever action is necessary to safeguard or promote the safety, welfare and well-being of a child assessed as in need of care and protection.
Write Care Plans Facilitate the development of a care plan to meet the needs of a child and his or her family.
Write Parental Responsibility Contract (PRC) Facilitate the development of a PRC aimed at improving the parenting skills of the parents and encouraging them to accept greater responsibility.
Apply for certain orders (exclusively)

Make application for warrants; and parent capacity orders (PRO), emergency care and protection orders (ECPO), supervision orders, guardianship orders and care orders.

This does not include section 90 applications.

Consent to application of certain orders Consent to application for a guardianship order by another party.

The Functions of Parental Responsibility exercised by FACS

Entry to (statutory) OOHC by a child occurs when:

  1. the child is in the care and control of a person other than a parent at a place other than the child’s usual home and
  2. an interim or final care order is made allocating PR to:
    • the Minister or another suitable person (or to the Minister and another suitable person jointly) or
    • the Minister or Secretary under an order of the Supreme Court or made under the Family Law Act 1975
  3. the child is in care for a period of 14 days or more.

The powers of PR mean all the powers, duties, responsibilities and authority which by law, parents have in relation to their children.

The Minister is able to delegate powers and functions of PR either to FACS officers or the principal officer of an external service provider. However the Minister has a duty of care that cannot be delegated. Currently through a deed of agreement, the Minister has delegated specific (not all) powers and functions of PR to just one external service provider in NSW.

FACS, or a delegated service provider, exercise the powers and functions of PR, which may include making certain decisions in relation to the child that a parent would normally make.

All other external service providers are not delegated any powers and functions of PR. In relation to these external service providers, the Minister is able to transfer to the service provider case management responsibility. A service provider with case management responsibility has the supervisory responsibility of the child’s placement; including supervising the authorised carers’ exercise of care responsibility and provision of day-to-day care and control of the child.

Table 3: Powers and Functions of PR exercised by FACS

Case Planning Change of child’s case plan goal
Contact A contact dispute arises that cannot be resolved
Contact Approve changes to contact plans not specified in Children’s Court order (for 12 months after making final orders)
Court Proceedings Apply for uncontested adoption matters; OR contested adoption matters & instruct Crown Solicitor*
Court Proceedings Approve report on suitability of PR arrangements & submit to Children’s Court, including section 76 and 82 report filing (albeit service provider with case management is required to draft a section 82 report)
Court Proceedings Approve the commencement of an adoption action*
Court Proceedings Arrange for children to meet with their legal representative
Court Proceedings Consent to application for guardianship order by a service provider
Court Proceedings Development and approval of care plan for registration with the Children’s Court
Court Proceedings Make referral for specialist reports required by Children’s Court
Court Proceedings Provide consent for appearing in proceedings as a delegate of Minister
Court Proceedings Provide consent for new court applications by service provider
Court Proceedings Respond to applications for rescission or variations to court orders filed by other parties
Financial Approve exceptions support expenditure
Financial Approve financial component of leaving care plans
Interstate Carer moves interstate (excepting border towns)
Interstate Residency of children outside the NSW jurisdiction
Legal Apply for rescission or variation to care order (including contact orders)
Legal Approve a trust account or will on behalf of CYP*
Legal Approve a behaviour management plan which includes the use of a restricted practice
Legal Approve bail, surety & fine payment*
Legal Approve name changes for CYP
Legal Consent for travel outside of NSW and Australia
Legal Duty of Care in relation to parental responsibility
Legal Obtain birth certificate
Legal Provide consent for (sub)delegating function to carer
Legal Provide consent for citizenship
Legal Provide consent for marriage
Legal Provide consent for passport application
Media Consent to publication of children identifying information or public performance
Media Significant media attention for a child or their family’s situation
Medical Apply for Medicare or Health Care Card
Medical Approve a behaviour management plan which includes the use of a restricted practice including the use of psychotropic medications for the purpose of controlling behaviour
Medical Consent to non-intimate children body piercing & tattooing
Medical Consent to non-urgent surgical medical & dental treatment*
Medical Grant exemption to a written request from Health Secretary for administration of addictive drug
Medical Health Pathway referral (when it hasn’t been completed by CSC that brought the children into OOHC)
Medical Provide consent for end of life medical intervention
Medical Provide consent for termination of pregnancy
Medical Provide consent to medical treatment involving potential terminal illness
Medical Provide consent to medical treatment rendering a children infertile
Medical Seek NCAT consent for a special medical procedure
Other A breakdown in interagency negotiations, especially involving another government service provider
Other Approve apprenticeship or enlistment in Australian Defence Force (ADF)*
Other Disagreement between FACS and a service provider
Other Exit from OOHC through restoration or transition to a guardianship arrangement
Other Other circumstance arising from OOHC accreditation (or loss of accreditation)
Other Request for FACS intervention by CYP
Other Responding to a critical event such as a serious injury or death of a child
Placement A child is moving from foster care to residential care
Placement Apply CAT with CIF to match needs to placement
Placement Respond to multiple placement breakdowns
Placement Respond unauthorised absence of more than 4 weeks (from placement)
Victim’s Compensation Assess & refer for Victims Support
Victim’s Compensation file audit to ensure recognition payment claims have been addressed for children who have been victims of crime
Victim’s Compensation initiate claim on behalf of a children who have been victims of crime

NOTE: Tasks/decisions/consents marked with *do not include Barnardos.

To report suspected child abuse or neglect, call the Child Protection Helpline on 132 111 (24 hours/7 days)