Adoption of Minors: Statutory Overview

Adoption establishes a legal parent-child relationship between a child and third persons and terminates existing rights and obligations between a child and his or her biological parents. In Kansas, the Adoption and Relinquishment Act, KSA 59-2111 et seq., governs adoptions, which include termination of parental rights and the transfer of legal custody to and creation of legal rights in the adoptive parents. Any adult or married couple may adopt.

KSA 59-2112 defines the different methods of adopting: “adult adoption,” “agency adoption,” “independent adoption,” and “stepparent adoption.” This article focuses on adoption of minors.

Foster Care Services and Child in Need of Care Proceedings

Foster care services are provided when the court finds a child to be in need of care pursuant to the Revised Kansas Code for the Care of Children (CINC Code; KSA 38-2201 to 38-2283). Child in Need of Care (CINC) proceedings can be divided into two categories: those concerning children who lack adequate parental care or control, or have been abused or abandoned; and those concerning children who commit certain offenses listed in KSA 38-2202(d)(6)-(10). This memorandum focuses on the first category.

Prison Review Board

The Prisoner Review Board (Board) is the releasing authority for incarcerated offenders who have committed the most serious, heinous, and detrimental acts against society. The Board also performs a variety of additional functions in the Kansas criminal justice system. As an integral part of the Kansas criminal justice system and consistent with the agency mission, the Board continually strives to provide for public safety through its work with offenders, corrections professionals, victims, families, the public, law enforcement officials, and other criminal justice stakeholders. This memorandum reviews the role of Board, and parole and clemency procedures as they relate to the board.

Community Supervision

In Kansas, three entities comprise the community supervision structure: Court Services, Community Corrections, and Parole Services. Parole Services supervises offenders released from Kansas correctional facilities on parole, post-release supervision, or conditional release. This memorandum will focus on the functions of Court Services and Community Corrections and how they compare to each other.

Mental Health and the Criminal Justice System

Considerations for incarcerated and detained persons with mental health issues have become increasingly common in the criminal justice system in Kansas. This memorandum provides an overview of relevant legislation and available services, including crisis intervention, mental health courts, and Kansas Department of Corrections (KDOC) mental health services. Competency Proceedings and Commitment of Certain Persons —Continue reading “Mental Health and the Criminal Justice System”