13.34.102  <<  13.34.105 >>   13.34.107

Guardian ad litemDutiesImmunityAccess to information.

(1) Unless otherwise directed by the court, the duties of the guardian ad litem for a child subject to a proceeding under this chapter, including an attorney specifically appointed by the court to serve as a guardian ad litem, include but are not limited to the following:
(a) To investigate, collect relevant information about the child's situation, and report to the court factual information regarding the best interests of the child;
(b) To meet with, interview, or observe the child, depending on the child's age and developmental status, and report to the court any views or positions expressed by the child on issues pending before the court;
(c) To monitor all court orders for compliance and to bring to the court's attention any change in circumstances that may require a modification of the court's order;
(d) To report to the court information on the legal status of a child's membership in any Indian tribe or band;
(e) Court-appointed special advocates and guardians ad litem may make recommendations based upon an independent investigation regarding the best interests of the child, which the court may consider and weigh in conjunction with the recommendations of all of the parties;
(f) To represent and be an advocate for the best interests of the child;
(g) To inform the child, if the child is twelve years old or older, of his or her right to request counsel and to ask the child whether he or she wishes to have counsel, pursuant to *RCW 13.34.100(6). The guardian ad litem shall report to the court that the child was notified of this right and indicate the child's position regarding appointment of counsel. The guardian ad litem shall report to the court his or her independent recommendation as to whether appointment of counsel is in the best interest of the child; and
(h) In the case of an Indian child as defined in RCW 13.38.040, know, understand, and advocate the best interests of the Indian child.
(2) A guardian ad litem shall be deemed an officer of the court for the purpose of immunity from civil liability.
(3) Except for information or records specified in RCW 13.50.100(7), the guardian ad litem shall have access to all information available to the state or agency on the case. Upon presentation of the order of appointment by the guardian ad litem, any agency, hospital, school organization, division or department of the state, doctor, nurse, or other health care provider, psychologist, psychiatrist, police department, or mental health clinic shall permit the guardian ad litem to inspect and copy any records relating to the child or children involved in the case, without the consent of the parent or guardian of the child, or of the child if the child is under the age of thirteen years, unless such access is otherwise specifically prohibited by law.
(4) A guardian ad litem may release confidential information, records, and reports to the office of the family and children's ombuds for the purposes of carrying out its duties under chapter 43.06A RCW.
(5) The guardian ad litem shall release case information in accordance with the provisions of RCW 13.50.100.

NOTES:

*Reviser's note: RCW 13.34.100 was amended by 2014 c 108 § 2, changing subsection (6) to subsection (7)(c) through (g).
Findings2010 c 180: See note following RCW 13.34.100.
Conflict with federal requirements1993 c 241: See note following RCW 13.34.030.
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