If I accept a child into my home as a kinship caregiver, do I have custody of the child?
There are two types of custody:

  • Physical Custody– The child lives with you but you have no legal authority to make decisions for the child. You may have input into decisions but Hamilton County Children’s Services is the legal guardian and makes all decisions affecting the child. Children’s Services will be actively involved with your family and the child.
  • Legal Custody or Guardianship – You must go to court, and the court grants legal custody or guardianship. As the legal guardian, you have the authority to make most major decisions regarding the child. The Children’s Services case will usually be closed and you and the child will no longer be involved with Children’s Services.


What do I do if I can no longer maintain care of the children in my home?

If you are caring for children in your home as a kinship caregiver and a case manager is still working with your family, you should report your concerns to the case manager. Your case manager may be able to assist you in finding ways to stabilize the placement or will find an alternate placement if necessary.

If the Children’s Services case has been closed and you no longer have a case manager, you should call 241‑KIDS (or the Children’s Services agency in the county in which you reside) for assistance in finding an alternate placement if needed.  Do not return the child(ren) to the home from which they were removed unless a Children’s Services agency has completed safety and risk assessments.


Can I become a licensed foster parent for the kinship children in my care? 

Please ask your case manager for a copy of HCJFS 7807 – If you are also interested in becoming a foster parent or visit the Foster Parenting 101 page at HCKids.org.

Once you have chosen an agency, contact the agency’s foster care training representative to determine their training requirements and schedule.