(a) If the juvenile court finds from clear and convincing evidence, competent, material, and relevant in nature, that a child is dependent, the juvenile court may proceed immediately, in the absence of objection showing good cause or at a postponed hearing, to make proper disposition of the case.

Terms Used In Alabama Code 12-15-311

  • child: An individual under the age of 18 years, or under 21 years of age and before the juvenile court for a delinquency matter arising before that individual's 18th birthday. See Alabama Code 45-36-248
  • Continuance: Putting off of a hearing ot trial until a later time.
  • Cross examine: Questioning of a witness by the attorney for the other side.
  • Dependent: A person dependent for support upon another.
  • Evidence: Information presented in testimony or in documents that is used to persuade the fact finder (judge or jury) to decide the case for one side or the other.
  • JUVENILE COURT: The juvenile or family court division of the circuit or district court having jurisdiction over matters as provided by this chapter. See Alabama Code 45-36-248

(b) In dispositional hearings, all relevant and material evidence helpful in determining the best interests of the child, including verbal and written reports, may be received by the juvenile court even though not admissible in the adjudicatory hearing. The parties or their counsel shall be afforded an opportunity to examine and controvert written reports so received and to cross-examine individuals making reports.

(c) On its own motion or that of a party, the juvenile court may continue the dispositional hearing pursuant to this section for a reasonable period to receive reports and other evidence bearing on the disposition or need for care or rehabilitation. In this event, the juvenile court shall make an appropriate order for temporary care for the child, or the release of the child from temporary care during the period of the continuance, subject to those conditions as the juvenile court may impose.

(Act 2008-277, p. 441, §18.)