Department for Community Based Services

Standards of Practice Online Manual

11.36.3 Attorneys Involved in the TPR Action

Cabinet for Health and Family Services

Department for Community Based Services
Division of Protection and Permanency
Standards of Practice Online Manual
Chapter 11-CPS Court
11.36.3 Attorneys Involved in the TPR Action

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Legal Authority/Introduction


Practice Guidance

  • The SSW is knowledgeable of and works with, as appropriate, the attorneys involved in the TPR action, to include the:
    • Guardian ad litem (GAL):  The GAL is an attorney who is appointed to represent the best interest of the child as outlined in SOP 11.5 Appointment of the Guardian Ad Litem (GAL);
    • Parents’ attorney:  Parents have a right to legal representation in termination actions.  If a parent does not have an attorney and the Circuit court determines the parent to be indigent, the court may appoint an attorney to represent the interest of the parents;
    • Regional attorney:  The regional attorney or other attorney assigned by the Office of Legal Services (OLS), which represents the Cabinet in the TPR action;
    • Warning order attorney:  A warning order attorney is necessary when the party to be summoned is avoiding summons or the party’s whereabouts are unknown.  If the party is out of state but a current address is known, then the party may be served by certified mail, by personal service or by the warning order attorney; 
  • The SSW does not attempt to request the appointment of a warning order without explicit direction from OLS.
  • The Circuit court clerk appoints a warning order attorney, upon request of the petitioner. 
  • The warning order attorney is required to report the results of their efforts to the court within fifty (50) days after appointment.


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