An adoptive parent or a prospective adoptive parent has the right to appeal to the commissioner under section 256.045 for reasons including, but not limited to, when eligibility for adoption assistance is denied, when a specific payment or reimbursement is modified or denied, and when the agreement for an eligible child is terminated. A prospective adoptive parent who disagrees with a decision by the commissioner prior to finalization of the adoption may request review of the decision by the commissioner, or may appeal the decision under section 256.045.
(a) An adoption assistance agreement must be signed and fully executed prior to the court order that finalizes the adoption. An adoptive parent who believes that extenuating circumstances exist, as to why the adoption was finalized prior to fully executing an adoption assistance agreement, may request a fair hearing. The parent has the responsibility to prove the existence of extenuating circumstances, such as:
(1) relevant facts regarding the child were known by the child-placing agency and not presented to the parent prior to finalization of the adoption; or
(2) the child-placing agency failed to advise a potential parent about the availability of adoption assistance for a child in the county-paid foster care system.
(b) If an appeals judge finds through the fair hearing process that extenuating circumstances existed and that the child met all eligibility criteria at the time the adoption was finalized, the effective date and any associated federal financial participation shall be retroactive to the date of the request for a fair hearing.
Official Publication of the State of Minnesota
Revisor of Statutes