Family Code Section 261.201(a) makes Records of Child Abuse confidential by statute. What happens when the parent or attorney of the child requests this information? 261.201(k) seems to create an exception. On the other hand the PIA manual from the AG says there is no special right of access to these records by the victim and sites OR 587 (1991). What do you all think?
Section 261.201(k) gives the child's parent, if the parent is not accused of the abuse, or the child, if the child is at least 18, access to the report of abuse or neglect regarding that child. The statute as amended supersedes that 1991 AG opinion.
To whom are they directing the open records request? The records are the possession of TDFPS, correct? Shouldn't the request be made of CPS, not a DAs office? CPS has a division devoted to redaction, who would need to redact any confidential information from the reports.
In addition to CPS records, 261.201 covers police reports and DA files involving child abuse cases. In any case, if your office receives a request for records in its possession, including copies of CPS reports, the Public Information Act applies.
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