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State Statute 48.227, Runaway Homes

 

48.227 Runaway Homes (1) Nothing contained in this section prohibits a home licensed under s. 48.48 or 48.75 from providing housing and services to a runaway child with the consent of the child and the consent of the child's parent, guardian, or legal custodian, under the supervision of a county department, a child welfare agency, or the department. When the parent, guardian, or legal custodian and the child both consent to the provision of these services and the child has not been taken into custody, no hearing as described in this section is required.

(2) Any person who operates a home under sub. (1) and licensed under s. 48.48 or 48.75, when engaged in sheltering a runaway child without the consent of the child's parent, guardian or legal custodian, shall notify the intake worker of the presences of the child in the home within 12 hours. The intake worker shall notify the parent, guardian, and legal custodian as soon as possible of the child's presence in that home. A hearing shall be held under sub. (4). The child shall not be removed from the home except with the approval of the court under sub. (4).  This subsection does not prohibit the parent, guardian, or legal custodian from conferring with the child or the person operating the home.

(3) For runaway children who have been taken into custody and then released, the judge may, with the agreement of the persons operating the homes, designate homes licensed under ss. 48.48 and 48.75 as places for temporary care and housing of such children. If the parent, guardian or legal custodian refuses to consent, the person taking the child into custody or the intake worker may release the child to one of the homes designated under this section; however, a hearing shall be held under sub. (4). The child shall not be removed from the home except with the approval of the court under sub. (4). This subsection does not prohibit the parent, guardian, or legal custodian from conferring with the child or the person operating the home.

(4) (a) If the child's parent, guardian, or legal custodian does not consent to the temporary care and housing of the child at the runaway home as provided under sub. (2) or (3), a hearing shall be held on the issue by the judge or a circuit court commissioner within 24 hours of the time that the child entered the runaway home, excluding Saturdays, Sundays, and legal holidays.  The intake worker shall notify the child and the child's parent, guardian, or legal custodian of the time, place, and purpose of the hearing.

(b) If, in addition to jurisdiction under par. (c), the court has jurisdiction over the child under ss. 48.13 to 48.14, excluding s. 48.14 (8), or under ss. 938.12 to 938.14, a hearing may be held under s. 48.21 or 938.21.

(c) For the purposes of this section, the court has jurisdiction over a runaway child only to the extent that it may hold the hearings and make the orders provided in this section.

(d) At the hearing, the child, the child's parent, guardian or legal custodian and a representative of the runaway home may present evidence, cross--examine, and confront witnesses and be represented by a counsel or guardian ad litem.

(e) At the conclusion of the hearing, the court may order:

1. That the child be released to his or her parent, guardian or legal custodian; or

2. That with the consent of the child and the runaway home, the child remain in the care of the runaway home for a period of not more than 20 days. Without further proceedings, the child shall be released whenever the child indicates, either by statement or conduct, that he or she wishes to leave the home or whenever the runaway home withdraws its consent. During this time period not to exceed 20 days ordered by the court, the child's parent, guardian, or legal custodian may not remove the child from the home but may confer with the child or with the person operating the home. If, at the conclusion of the time period ordered by the court the child has not left the home, and no petition concerning the child has been filed under s. 48.13, 48.133, 938.12 or 938.13, the child shall be released from the home. If a petition concerning the child has been filed under s. 48.13, 48.133, 938.12 or 938.13, the child may be held in temporary physical custody under ss. 48.20 to 48.21 or 938.20 to 938.21.

(5) No person operating an approved or licensed home in compliance with this section is subject to civil or criminal liability by virtue of false imprisonment.

(source:  Wisconsin Statutes and Administrative Code, February 2003)