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RULE §707.571What do the following words and terms mean when used in this subchapter?

The following words and terms, when used in this subchapter, have the following meanings, unless the context clearly indicates otherwise:

  (1) Designated Perpetrator--An individual whom the Department of Family and Protective Services (DFPS) has designated as a perpetrator or victim/perpetrator of child abuse or neglect as specified in §700.512(b)(2) - (3) of this title (relating to Conclusions about Roles).

  (2) Release--The disclosure of information about a designated perpetrator to any party outside DFPS, including employers, licensing boards, and other entities who have control over an individual's access to children and/or vulnerable adults, without the consent of the designated perpetrator. For purposes of this subchapter, however, the term "release" does not apply to disclosures required by law, including those made pursuant to authority as set forth in §700.203 of this title (relating to Access to Confidential Information Maintained by the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services (DFPS)) and/or Texas Family Code §261.201.

  (3) Release hearing--Also commonly known as a Due Process Hearing, provides a designated perpetrator an opportunity to appeal a decision by DFPS to release information about him/her. It is a formal administrative legal proceeding before an administrative law judge of the State Office of Administrative Hearings to determine whether a Child Protective Services finding of abuse or neglect of a child against a designated perpetrator is appropriate.

  (4) Sustained Perpetrator--A designated perpetrator becomes a sustained perpetrator when:

    (A) a Release (Due Process) Hearing under this subchapter (relating to Release Hearings) is held and an administrative law judge has determined that there is a preponderance of the evidence to sustain DFPS's conclusion that the designated perpetrator is responsible for abuse or neglect of a child; or

    (B) DFPS provides the designated perpetrator written notice of the right to request a Release (Due Process) Hearing, and the designated perpetrator either:

      (i) Waives his/her right to appeal in writing; or

      (ii) Fails to request in writing a hearing within 15 calendar days after receiving notice of that right.

  (5) Vulnerable adult--This term includes:

    (A) a disabled person with a physical, mental, or developmental disability that substantially impairs the person's ability to provide adequately for the person's care or protection, and who is 18 years of age or older or under 18 years of age and who has had the disabilities of minority removed (Human Resources Code, §48.002); or

    (B) a person age 65 years or older.

Source Note: The provisions of this §707.571 adopted to be effective March 1, 2012, 37 TexReg 713; transferred effective January 15, 2021, as published in the Texas Register December 11, 2020, 45 TexReg 8882

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