Question: My sibling is going into foster care. Can I be their foster parent?

If you are family, you are considered a kinship placement option for a child that comes into foster care. Arizona law states that you are able to be the kinship foster care parent if you are at least 18 years old. See below from A.R.S. 8.5.14 B

  1. A kinship foster care parent applicant who is not a licensed foster care parent shall be at least eighteen years of age.  The applicant and each member of the applicant’s household who is at least eighteen years of age shall submit a full set of fingerprints to the Department of Child Safety for the purpose of obtaining a state and federal criminal records check pursuant to section 41-1750 and Public Law 92-544. The Department of Public Safety may exchange this fingerprint data with the Federal Bureau of Investigation. The Department of Child Safety shall determine if the applicant is able to meet the child’s health and safety needs by conducting one or more home visits and interviewing the applicant. The Department of Child Safety may interview other household members, review the applicant’s personal and professional references and conduct Department of Child Safety central registry checks.

If you meet the rules for becoming a licensed family, kinship placements can benefit from extra supports. Here are the requirements to become foster licensed:

You are eligible to foster/adopt in the state of Arizona if you meet the following criteria:

  • Married, single, divorced, or widowed
  • At least 21 years of age to foster/At least 18 years of age to adopt (typically 18 refers to relative adoptions)
  • Legal U.S. and Arizona resident
  • Apartment dweller, renter, or homeowner
  • Able to pass a fingerprint-based criminal history records check
  • Able to meet your household’s financial needs
  • Physically and mentally healthy

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