2022 Edition

Adoption Services (CA-AS) 4: Service and Permanency Planning and Adoption Service Contracts

Clients served by the program participate in the development and ongoing review of service and permanency plans and/or adoption services contracts that are the basis for delivery of services and support.


The program develops service and permanency plans for the clients they are responsible for serving. Plans for some clients may be combined or may be separate depending upon the nature of the program. Service plans are sometimes incorporated into the adoption services contract. Service plans are sometimes drafted prior to the completion of birth parent assessments, child studies and home studies and should be updated when those assessments are complete.

NA The organization only provides foster to adopt services.

NA The organization provides home study services only.

NA The organization provides post-placement and/or post-adoption services only.

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Adoption programs establish permanent family relationships for children in need of permanency, and increase the well-being, functioning, and stability of children, birth parents, adoptive families, and adopted individuals.
All elements or requirements outlined in the standard are evident in practice, as indicated by full implementation of the practices outlined in the Practice Standards.
Practices are basically sound but there is room for improvement, as noted in the ratings for the Practice Standards; e.g.,
  • Minor inconsistencies and not yet fully developed practices are noted; however, these do not significantly impact service quality; or
  • Procedures need strengthening; or
  • With few exceptions, procedures are understood by staff and are being used; or
  • For the most part, established timeframes are met; or
  • Proper documentation is the norm and any issues with individual staff members are being addressed through performance evaluations and training; or
  • In a few instances, client or staff signatures are missing and/or not dated; or
  • With few exceptions, staff work with persons served, when appropriate, to help them receive needed support, access services, mediate barriers, etc.; or
  • Active client participation occurs to a considerable extent.
Practice requires significant improvement, as noted in the ratings for the Practice Standards. Service quality or program functioning may be compromised; e.g.,
  • Procedures and/or case record documentation need significant strengthening; or
  • Procedures are not well-understood or used appropriately; or
  • Timeframes are often missed; or
  • In several instances, client or staff signatures are missing and/or not dated; or
  • Quarterly reviews are not being done consistently; or
  • Level of care for some clients is clearly inappropriate; or
  • Service planning is often done without full client participation; or
  • Appropriate family involvement is not documented; or  
  • Documentation is routinely incomplete and/or missing; or
  • Individual staff members work with persons served, when appropriate, to help them receive needed support, access services, mediate barriers, etc., but this is the exception.
Implementation of the standard is minimal or there is no evidence of implementation at all, as noted in the ratings for the Practice Standards; e.g.,
  • No written procedures, or procedures are clearly inadequate or not being used; or 
  • Documentation is routinely incomplete and/or missing.  
Self-Study EvidenceOn-Site EvidenceOn-Site Activities
  • Service planning and monitoring procedures
  • Adoption Services contract template
  • Procedures for review of permanency plans
  • Reports or other aggregate data regarding the length of stay in out of home care, from the previous 12 months, if the organization facilitates foster care adoptions
  • Interviews may include:
    1. Program director
    2. Relevant personnel
    3. Clients
  • Review case records


CA-AS 4.01

Service plans are developed in a timely manner with the full participation of clients served and others as appropriate, and include:

  1. agreed upon goals, desired outcomes, and timeframes for achieving them;
  2. the adoption services and supports to be provided, and by whom; and
  3. the client's signature.
Examples: Examples of ways to support the full participation of clients and others can include: providing sufficient notice to interested parties, scheduling meetings at times and places where interested parties can attend.

Examples: In child-focused recruitment programs, workers can engage children in the development of the recruitment plan by seeking the child’s input on or participation with: 
  1. types of recruitment activities conducted; 
  2. type of family desired;
  3. development of recruitment tools; and
  4. identification of individuals to consider. 


CA-AS 4.02

The permanency plan for children in foster care defines the permanency goal as adoption, is reviewed at least every 6 months through a court or administrative review process, and specifies:
  1. activities that support the achievement of adoption; and
  2. a timeframe for completing the adoption.


Provincial laws, territorial statutes or administrative rules may provide guidance about when and how administrative reviews are to be conducted. The case review may be conducted by or in collaboration with the public authority. The review is scheduled at times when appropriate parties can attend.
NA The program does not provide services in foster care cases.


CA-AS 4.03

The worker and a supervisor, or a clinical, service, or peer team, review each case quarterly, or more frequently depending on the needs of clients served, to assess:

  1. service plan implementation;
  2. progress toward achieving service goals and desired outcomes;
  3. need for additional or new services or other changes to the plan;
  4. the need for any updates to the child background study or the home study; and
  5. the continued appropriateness of agreed upon goals.


When experienced workers are conducting reviews of their own cases, the worker’s supervisor must review a sample of the worker’s evaluations as per the requirements of the standard.


CA-AS 4.04

The worker and client:

  1. periodically review progress toward achievement of agreed upon service goals; and
  2. sign revisions to the service goals and plans.


 A clinical or other justification demonstrating the need for additional or new services, or for any significant pause in the process should be documented in the case record and discussion of such changes with clients should be documented in the case record to ensure the client fully understands the justification.  


 Each child receives information about progress toward achieving permanency as appropriate to his or her age, cultural needs, and developmental level.


Workers in child-focused recruitment programs should meet with the child at least monthly to establish a productive working relationship and customize the child’s recruitment plan. 


CA-AS 4.05

Birth parents who have made a plan for adoption receive written information which includes:
  1. disclosure of the requirements relating to notice and consent;
  2. provisions for any financial support that will be provided;
  3. provisions for contact with prospective adoptive parents, as appropriate;
  4. steps to be taken if the birth parent believes that any undue pressure or influence is occurring; and
  5. circumstances under which services may be terminated by either party.
NA The program only provides services in cases where birth parents rights have already been terminated.
Examples: The information may be provided for example in a service agreement, a disclosure of organization’s policies, a rights and responsibilities disclosure, etc. 


CA-AS 4.06

The adoption service contract signed by prospective adoptive parents includes:
  1. a description of the services to be provided by the program and obligations of the prospective adoptive parents;
  2. fees and expenses to be paid;
  3. a provision relating to duty of candor and ongoing disclosure requirements;
  4. post-placement and post-adoption services that will be available through the organization and details of any required post-placement visits and reports; 
  5. a plan describing the adoptive parents’ and the organization’s responsibilities if the adoption is disrupted or dissolved;
  6. risks related to adoption services and waivers of liability only when such waivers are limited, consistent with applicable law and regulation, and based on the specific risks detailed in the contract; and
  7. circumstances under which services may be terminated by either party.


When a child is being placed prior to the termination of parental rights, the program should inform the prospective adoptive parents of the risks of such a placement and the steps that will be necessary to complete an adoption.
Examples: Examples of information in the plan if the adoption is disrupted or dissolved can include: legal and financial obligations of the family and the organization; how the child’s wishes may be considered; how relevant authorities will be notified and may be involved.


CA-AS 4.07

The organization works in active partnership with clients to:
  1. assume a service coordination role, as appropriate, when the need has been identified and no other organization has assumed that responsibility;
  2. ensure that they receive appropriate advocacy support;
  3. assist with access to the full array of services to which they are eligible; and
  4. mediate barriers to services within the service delivery system.