210.305.  Grandparent placement preferred in emergency placements — definitions — diligent efforts required, when. — 1.  When an initial emergency placement of a child is deemed necessary, the children’s division shall immediately begin diligent efforts to locate, contact, and place the child with a grandparent or grandparents of the child, except when the children’s division determines that placement with a grandparent or grandparents is not in the best interest of the child and subject to the provisions of section 210.482 regarding background checks for emergency placements.  If emergency placement of a child with a grandparent is deemed not to be in the best interest of the child, the children’s division shall document in writing the reason the grandparent has been denied emergency placement and shall have just cause to deny the emergency placement.  Prior to placement of the child in any emergency placement, the division shall assure that the child’s physical needs are met.

Terms Used In Missouri Laws 210.305

  • following: when used by way of reference to any section of the statutes, mean the section next preceding or next following that in which the reference is made, unless some other section is expressly designated in the reference. See Missouri Laws 1.020

 2.  For purposes of this section, the following terms shall mean:

 (1)  “Diligent efforts”, a good faith attempt documented in writing by the children’s division, which exercises reasonable efforts and care to utilize all available services and resources related to meeting the ongoing health and safety needs of the child, to locate a grandparent or grandparents of the child after all of the child’s physical needs have been attended to by the children’s division;

 (2)  “Emergency placement”, those limited instances when the children’s division is placing for an initial placement a child in the home of private individuals, including neighbors, friends, or relatives, as a result of a sudden unavailability of the child’s primary caretaker.

 3.  Diligent efforts shall be made to contact the grandparent or grandparents of the child within three hours from the time the emergency placement is deemed necessary for the child.  During such three-hour time period, the child may be placed in an emergency placement.  If a grandparent or grandparents of the child cannot be located within the three-hour period, the child may be temporarily placed in emergency placement; except that, after the emergency placement is deemed necessary, the children’s division shall continue to make diligent efforts to contact, locate, and place the child with a grandparent or grandparents, or another relative, with first consideration given to a grandparent for placement.

 4.  Nothing in this section shall be construed or interpreted to interfere with or supercede laws related to parental rights or judicial authority.