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COVID Has Extended Foster Care Stays

Thousands of families across the United States have had reunifications with children in foster care shut down as courts delay cases, opt for virtual meetings, and temporarily shut down. There has been a decrease in children exiting the foster care system, meaning families are waiting longer with a system that had intentions of being temporary.


Miami, FL -- (SBWIRE) -- 06/17/2021 -- There has been a dramatic decrease in reunifications during the pandemic, at least 16%, according to the Associated Press. Adoptions have also dropped by 23% since March 2020. At least 22,600 fewer children have left foster care as compared to 2019 statistics.

During this time, services needed for reunification like physiatric evaluations, drug testing, group therapy, housing assistance, and transportation were extremely limited. In foster care, a child's doctor appointment has to be approved by a judge first, adding to the stress that many are feeling due to shutdowns.

For children, this means because of staffing shortages and COVID-19 protocols, there have been limited privileges such as parental visitation and group activities.

Many states have extended support to children on the edge of aging out of the foster care system during COVID-19, a policy that has protected youth in foster care from being wicked out of their appointed living situations. This, however, ties into the overall number of decreases in foster care exits.

As families continue to struggle through the foster care system and visitation, it may be time to consider a Miami family law lawyer. These lawyers can help you understand your visitation rights and help you navigate the complex world of custody and foster care, especially during a time such as this. Rafool, LLC., family law attorneys in Miami are ready to help. Visit us online to get connected.