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Name: In re A.F.
Case #: A137913
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 1 DCA
Division: 5
Opinion Date: 09/27/2013

A non-minor dependent whose guardian died was not eligible to receive AFDC payments directly, but remand was required to consider appointment of a successor guardian to receive payments. A.F. was removed from her parents shortly after birth and was appointed an unrelated legal guardian. The guardian received payments for her from AFDC. When A.F. turned 18, the guardian continued to receive the payments under the Mutual Agreement for Extended Foster Care, which required A.F. to finish high school and enroll in college. Under the Agreement, A.F. remained eligible for payments until the age of 21. Six months later, A.F.’s guardian died. A.F. requested that the juvenile court secure extended AFDC payments, payable directly to her. The juvenile court granted the request and the Department appealed. Reversed. Former dependents who are placed with a non-relative guardian may receive public assistance until they reach 21. When a guardian dies, and the former dependent wants to continue to receive payments, the court has the authority to appoint a successor guardian to facilitate payments. Here, however, no successor guardian was appointed, so the order for payments could not stand. Remand was required so the juvenile court could consider appointing a successor guardian.