Update on the Status of the Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA) in Texas

The Children’s Commission has released a letter to Judges and Attorneys with a response to the lawsuit that declared the Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA) unconstitutional. The United States and Tribal Defendants both appealed the ruling to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit. On Dec. 3, 2018, the Court of Appeals issued its order in the case, granting the Tribal Defendants’ motion to stay judgment pending appeal.

As a consequence of the stay, all sections of the ICWA and Final Rule are in effect and should be adhered to pending further action by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit. DFPS will resume application of ICWA and its accompanying regulations, and all Texas courts hearing child protection cases should apply ICWA until further notice.

Read Texas CASA CEO Vicki Spriggs’ take on the challenge to ICWA.