2017 Wisconsin Statutes & Annotations
Chapter 48. Children's code.
48.745 Formal complaints regarding child welfare agencies and group homes.

Universal Citation: WI Stat § 48.745 (2017)

48.745 Formal complaints regarding child welfare agencies and group homes.

(1) If a complaint is received by a child welfare agency operating a residential care center for children and youth or by a group home, the licensee shall attempt to resolve the complaint informally. Failing such resolution, the licensee shall inform the complaining party of the procedure for filing a formal complaint under this section.

(2) Any individual may file a formal complaint under this section regarding the general operation of a residential care center for children and youth or group home and shall not be subject to reprisals for doing so. All formal complaints regarding residential care centers for children and youth and group homes shall be filed with the county department on forms supplied by the county department unless the county department designates the department to receive formal complaints. The county department shall investigate or cause to be investigated each formal complaint. Records of the results of each investigation and the disposition of each formal complaint shall be kept by the county department and filed with the subunit of the department that licenses residential care centers for children and youth and group homes.

(3) Upon receipt of a formal complaint, the county department may investigate the premises and records and question the licensee, staff, and residents of the residential care center for children and youth or group home involved. The county department shall attempt to resolve the situation through negotiation and other appropriate means.

(4) If no resolution is reached, the county department shall forward the formal complaint, results of the investigation and any other pertinent information to the unit within the department which is empowered to take further action under this chapter against the facility. The unit shall review the complaint and may conduct further investigation, take enforcement action under this chapter or dismiss the complaint. The department shall notify the complainant in writing of the final disposition of the complaint and the reasons therefor. If the complaint is dismissed, the complainant is entitled to an administrative hearing conducted by the department to determine the reasonableness of the dismissal.

(5) If the county department designates the department to receive formal complaints, the subunit under s. 48.743 (3) shall receive the complaints and the department shall have all the powers and duties granted to the county department in this section.

History: 1977 c. 205, 418; 1979 c. 175; 1985 a. 176; 2001 a. 59; 2007 a. 20.

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