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Name: In re Silvia R.
Case #: B197381
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 2 DCA
Division: 4
Opinion Date: 01/24/2008

Juvenile court does not have the authority to order relatives with whom the child is not placed to participate in programs or counseling. The minor was removed from mother because mother failed to protect the minor from sexual abuse. As part of the disposition order, the juvenile court ordered the stepfather and older brother to participate in counseling for abusers. Stepfather and brother were not present in court, were not represented by counsel, and did not live with the minor. Mother appealed the order. The appellate court held that mother had standing to challenge the portions of the disposition order which required stepfather and brother to participate in counseling. Disagreeing with In re Venus B. (1990) 222 Cal.App.3d 931, the court held that Welfare and Institutions Code section 362, subdivision (c) does not authorize the juvenile court to order other relatives with whom the child is not placed to participate in counseling or education programs. Section 361, subdivision (c) authorizes the court to impose on the parent as a condition reunification, to demonstrate that the parent can protect the child. It may also order that the parent must reside separately from any perpetrators of sexual abuse, and may also order the parent to demonstrate that the perpetrators have addressed the issues involved in order that the child may safely reside with them.