Adoption Assistance and Child Welfare Act of 1980 Law and Legal Definition

Adoption assistance and child welfare act of 1980 is a federal statute passed to correct or alleviate problems in the foster care system and to promote permanency rather than multiple foster placements. The act mandates the states to take reasonable efforts to

(1) avoid removing children from their homes,

(2) reunite families when children had been removed because of abuse or neglect, and

(3) when reunification failed, to terminate parental rights and place the children in permanent homes.

Further, the law provided unprecedented financial assistance to families seeking to adopt a child. The Act provided funds for foster-care placement, Child Protective Services, family preservation and reunification, and foster-care reform to states complying with the Act. This Act is now essentially overruled in philosophy by the 1997 enactment of the Adoption and Safe Families Act.