Utah Administrative Code

The Utah Administrative Code is the body of all effective administrative rules as compiled and organized by the Division of Administrative Rules (see Subsection 63G-3-102(5); see also Sections 63G-3-701 and 702).

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R495. Human Services, Administration.

Rule R495-890. Department of Human Services Conflict Investigation Procedure.

As in effect on October 1, 2019

Table of Contents

R495-890-1. Authority.

(1) This rule is authorized by Sections 62A-1-110, 62A-1-111, 62A-4a-202.6(4).

R495-890-2. Definitions.

(1) The definitions contained in Sections 62A-4a-101, 62A-4a-402 and 62A-4a-1002 apply to this rule and to the child abuse, neglect, or dependency DHS conflict investigations. The definitions contained in Section 62A-3-301 apply to this rule and to the vulnerable adult abuse, neglect, or exploitation DHS conflict investigations. In addition, the following terms are defined for the purposes of this Rule:

(a) "Accepted referral" means a referral that has been screened by APS or DCFS intake and has met the agency's requirements for accepting a referral.

(b) "APS" means Adult Protective Services.

(c) "Case" means a referral that has been accepted for an investigation.

(d) "Child" means a person under eighteen years of age.

(e) "Client" means any person receiving services from DHS.

(f) "Conflict" means that there is an accepted referral alleging child abuse neglect and dependency OR abuse, neglect or exploitation of a vulnerable adult, and DHS has a relationship with either the victim, alleged perpetrator, or another person named in the investigation such that there might be a perceived or actual conflict of interest or a perceived or actual appearance of impropriety if the referral is investigated by DCFS or APS. Potential conflicts of interest include:

(i) There is an accepted referral alleging child abuse, neglect or dependency and an employee, volunteer, board member, provider, or contractor of DHS either is the alleged perpetrator or has a relationship with the alleged victim, alleged perpetrator, or another person named in the investigation.

(ii) There is an accepted referral alleging abuse, neglect or exploitation of a vulnerable adult, and an employee, volunteer, board member, provider, or contractor of DHS either is the alleged perpetrator or has a relationship with the alleged victim, alleged perpetrator, or another person named in the investigation.

(iii) There is an accepted referral and a person's relationship with DHS may influence an investigation of abuse, neglect or dependency of a child, or abuse, neglect or exploitation of a vulnerable adult.

(iv) An accepted referral alleges child abuse, neglect, or dependency by a professional partner of DCFS, including but not limited to: an Assistant Attorney General, a Guardian ad Litem, or a law enforcement officer who works directly with DCFS.

(v) An accepted referral alleges that a child in the custody of DCFS has been abused or neglected, and there is a lapse in the contract for an independent CPS investigation from the private sector.

(vi) An accepted referral alleges that a child has been abused and/or neglected while in the custody or guardianship of DJJS, while placed in the USH or USDC, or while placed with a contracted provider of any of these agencies, and the alleged perpetrator is an employee, volunteer or board member with DHS, or a provider or contractor of DCFS.

(vii) An accepted referral alleges that an adult has been abused, neglected or exploited while in the guardianship of OPG, placed at the USH or the USDC, or placed with a DHS contracted provider of any of these agencies, and the alleged perpetrator is an employee, volunteer, or board member of DHS, or a provider, or contractor of DAAS.

(viii) Any other conflict exists that may prevent the assigned agency from making an objective determination based on the facts of the case.

(ix) The Executive Director of DHS designates a case a "DHS Conflict Investigation" and directs that the case be assigned to a DHS Conflict Investigator.

(g) "DHS Conflict Case" means that a conflict has been identified, and the case has been referred to a DHS Conflict Investigator for a DHS Conflict Investigation.

(h) "DHS Conflict Investigation" means the investigation of a CPS case by a DHS Conflict Investigator or the screening of an APS case to determine whether a conflict exists.

(i) "DHS Conflict Investigator" means an employee of DHS assigned to OSR to conduct DHS Conflict Investigations.

(j) "CPS" means Child Protective Services.

(k) "DHS" means the Department of Human Services, and includes all of the agencies and offices within the Department.

(l) "DCFS" means the Division of Child and Family Services, including its regional offices.

(m) "DAAS" means the Utah Division of Aging and Adult Services.

(n) "DJJS" means the Division of Juvenile Justice Services.

(o) "DJJS Investigator" means an employee of DJJS who conducts internal affairs investigations for DJJS.

(p) "DSPD" means the Division of Services for People with Disabilities.

(q) "Executive Director" is as defined in 62A-1-104 and includes the designee of the Executive Director.

(r) "OPG" means the Office of the Public Guardian.

(s) "OSR" means the Office of Services Review within the Utah Department of Human Services.

(t) "Reasonable Restraint" means: Justifiable restraint to protect the client or to protect others from the client's acts. Supported physical abuse does not include the use of reasonable and necessary physical restraint by an educator in accordance with Section 53A-11-802(2) or 76-2-401. Nor does it include conduct that constitutes the use of reasonable and necessary physical restraint or force in self-defense or otherwise appropriate to the circumstances to obtain possession of a weapon or other dangerous object in the client's possession or control, or to protect the client or another person from physical injury.

(i) In determining whether "reasonable restraint" was used in a DHS facility, the DHS Conflict Investigator shall take into account the nature and purpose of the facility.

(u) "Referral" means information provided to DCFS intake alleging abuse, neglect, or dependency of a child, or to APS intake alleging abuse, neglect or exploitation of a vulnerable adult.

(v) "Secondary worker" means a DCFS employee or an APS employee assigned to a DHS Conflict Investigation to conduct limited casework activities requested by the DHS Conflict Investigator, including but not limited to the following: making priority face to face contact when the DHS Conflict Investigator is unable to do so; assisting with the removal of a child; booking the child into a shelter facility; and filing a petition for ongoing In-Home or Out-of-Home services.

(w) "USDC" means the Utah State Developmental Center.

(x) "USH" means the Utah State Hospital.

(y) "Vulnerable Adult" is the same as defined in 62A-3-301(28).

R495-890-3. Purpose.

(1) The purpose of this rule is to establish the criteria used to determine:

(a) when a conflict investigation is necessary; and

(b) how conflict investigations will be conducted;

(2) It is the Department of Human Services' goal to avoid any impropriety or appearances of impropriety that may arise when a conflict exists and to ensure that investigations involving an employee, volunteer, board member, provider, or contractor of DHS are conducted fairly. DHS conflict investigations shall be conducted in a manner consistent with CPS and APS procedures and policies.

R495-890-4. Procedure Used When a DHS Conflict Investigation Is Necessary for Children.

(1) In general, OSR shall be notified whenever a conflict, as defined above, exists.

(2) When a CPS intake worker identifies a potential conflict, the intake worker shall staff the referral with OSR to determine if a conflict exists. OSR shall determine whether there is a conflict, and will notify the CPS Intake Worker of its decision.

(a) If OSR determines that no conflict exists, the case shall be referred back to CPS intake for investigation by DCFS no later than the next business day after OSR's determination.

(b) If a conflict is identified after the initial referral, OSR shall be notified on the next business day after the conflict is identified. If the DCFS or APS worker is responding to an emergency or priority one call, the worker shall complete whatever protective actions are necessary and then staff the conflict with a supervisor. The assigned CPS worker and/or the CPS worker's supervisor shall notify OSR no later than the next business day after the conflict is identified.

(c) Once the accepted case is assigned to OSR, a conflict investigator shall be assigned and all investigation activities from that point forward shall be supervised by OSR.

(3) If the conflict case involves a child in the custody of DCFS it shall be assigned to an independent CPS investigator from the private sector. If there is a lapse in the contract for an independent CPS investigator from the private sector, the case will be assigned to a DHS Conflict Investigator.

(4) DHS Conflict Investigator shall have training that is substantially similar to the training received by CPS workers.

(5) DHS Conflict Investigators have the same rights, duties, and authority to investigate referrals as CPS workers.

(6) The following duties are to remain the duties of CPS Intake: receipt of the referral; research; disposition of the referral; establish priority of the referral; and, establish allegation categories.

(7) A DCFS investigator may act as a secondary worker and assist the DHS Conflict Investigator.

(8) The DHS Conflict Investigator shall determine whether the allegations are supported, unsupported, or without merit,.

(9) If the Executive Director has designated a case as a conflict case, OSR shall assign the case to a (DHS) Conflict Investigator.

R495-890-5. Procedure Used When a DHS Conflict Investigation Is Necessary for Adults.

(1) Allegations of abuse, neglect, or exploitation of a vulnerable adult shall be referred to APS Intake.

(a) If APS Intake accepts the referral and identifies a potential conflict, the Intake worker shall staff the referral with OSR to determine if a conflict exists.

(b) OSR shall determine whether there is a conflict and will notify APS intake of its decision.

(c) In cases where a conflict exists, OSR shall accept the case, and consult with the APS Director or designee in determining the appropriate APS investigator that APS intake will assign to the case.

(d) If OSR determines that no conflict exists, the case shall be referred back to APS intake for investigation by APS no later than the next business day after OSR's determination.

(2) If any concerns arise during the investigation around conflict issues, APS may consult with OSR as how to handle the conflict.

(3) If a conflict is identified after APS has initiated an investigation, OSR shall be notified on the next business day after the conflict is identified. If the APS worker is responding to an emergency, the worker shall complete whatever protective actions are necessary and then staff the conflict with a supervisor. The supervisor shall notify OSR of the conflict and OSR shall consult with the APS Director or designee in determining the appropriate APS investigator that APS intake will assign to the case.

(4) If the Executive Director has designated a case as a conflict case, OSR shall consult with the APS Director or designee in determining the appropriate APS investigator that APS intake will assign to the case.

R495-890-6. Special Procedures for DHS Conflict Investigations.

(1) Nothing in this rule is intended to limit an agency's ability to conduct its own internal investigation of any incident that occurs in a facility or by an employee during working hours.

(2) The DHS conflict investigation is meant to determine whether abuse, neglect or dependency of a child, or abuse, neglect or exploitation of an adult occurred. If, during the course of the investigation, the DHS Conflict Investigator or APS investigator believes that a separate investigation into policy or personnel matters is warranted, the DHS Conflict Investigator or APS investigator may notify the agency of its concerns.

(3) A DHS Conflict Investigator or APS investigator may determine that a person was not abused or neglected if reasonable restraint was used in a DJJS facility, the USH, the USDC, or other contracted facility or program of DJJS or DSPD.

(4) The DHS Conflict Investigator or APS investigator may notify the agency of the initiation of an investigation and/or the conclusion of an investigation.

KEY

investigations, conflict

Date of Enactment or Last Substantive Amendment

December 10, 2012

Notice of Continuation

June 29, 2015

Authorizing, Implemented, or Interpreted Law

62A-1-110; 62A-1-111; 62A-1-115; 62A-4A-101; 62A-4a-202.6; 62A-4a-202.6(4)


Additional Information

Contact

For questions regarding the content or application of rules under Title R495, please contact the promulgating agency (Human Services, Administration). A list of agencies with links to their homepages is available at http://www.utah.gov/government/agencylist.html or from http://www.rules.utah.gov/contact/agencycontacts.htm.