DCFS INFO MEMO 2001 - 18

November 15, 2001

Department of Health and Family Services
Division of Children and Family Services


Area Administrators/Assistant Area Administrators
Bureau Directors
County Departments of Community Programs Directors
County Departments of Developmental Disabilities 
      Services Directors
County Departments of Human Services Directors
County Departments of Social Services Directors
Section Chiefs
Tribal Chairpersons/Human Services Facilitators


Susan N. Dreyfus


Bona Fide Consideration of an Agency's Placement Recommendation


Under the changes to Title IV-E of the Social Security Act created by the federal Adoption and Safe Families Act (ASFA), the court must either agree with the recommendation of the agency in terms of a placement recommendation or give bona fide consideration to that recommendation. If neither of these is true, the placement will not be IV-E reimbursable.

Appropriate changes were made to Chs. 48 and 938 by the biennial budget, 2001 Wisconsin Act 16, to reflect this change in the federal law. These changes were made to ss. 48.21(5)(b)2., 48.355(2)(b)6m., 48.357(2v), 938.21(5)(b)2., 938.355(2)(b)6m. and 938.357(2v), Stats. Under these changes, the court must either agree with the agency's recommendation or place a written statement in the record that bona fide consideration was given to the agency's recommendation.

This change became effective on September 1, 2001. The Director of State Courts Office has already made the appropriate changes to the court forms and has notified judges of this new requirement.

I would recommend that you confer with your judges regarding this change to assure that, when appropriate, such a statement be included in the record. A copy of this language has been attached for your convenience.



Area Administrator


Michelle Jensen
Child Welfare Policy Specialist
P.O. Box 8916
Madison, WI 53708-8916
Phone: (608) 261-8084
FAX: (608) 264-6750
E-Mail: jensemm@dhfs.state.wi.us

Attachment (PDF 75 kb)


Pamela Eitland, DOC/DJC
Michelle Jensen, DCFS/BPP

The Department of Children and Families, protecting children, strengthening families, building communities.