Dependency & Termination of the Parent-Child Relationship
View the full text of Law RCW 13.34.

The Dependency proceedings include coordination and overseeing the legal and social processing of abused, neglected and/or dependent children as mandated by state and federal laws.

The Dependency process aids abused and neglected children to either be reunited with their families or find an alternative safe, permanent home. Juvenile Court typically holds a myriad of hearings for over 1,000 dependent children per year in Spokane County.

In 2005, there was a monthly average of 882 Dependent Children in Spokane County. The number of children went up considerably in 2006 to a monthly average of 1,004.

Court Appointed Special Advocates & Guardian Ad Litem
Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA), advocate for children who have been abused and/or neglected and report to the court as to the best interest of the child.

Guardian Ad Litems
Guardian Ad Litems (GAL) are paid staff who perform the same role as CASA volunteers. Spokane County currently has five Dependency Guardian Ad Litems.

CASA Volunteers (PDF) make recommendations, provide testimony, and speak for the best interest of abused and neglected children both in judicial and non-judicial Dependency forums. Spokane County maintains approximately 200 CASA Volunteers.
For more information, view the following resources: