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HHS Tribal Consultation on the Adoption and Foster Care Analysis and Reporting System Notice of Proposed Rulemaking

April 3 @ 2:30 pm CDT

April 3 at 3:30 pm Eastern
Register in advance

The Department of Health and Human Services, Administration for Children and Families (ACF) is committed to partnering on a nation-to-nation basis with Tribes to ensure the wellbeing of Tribal children and preservation of Tribal families. We invite you to provide your input on a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) to amend the Adoption and Foster Care Analysis and Reporting System (AFCARS) regulations to require state title IV-E agencies to collect and report additional data elements related to the procedural requirements related to the Indian Child Welfare Act of 1978 (ICWA). The NPRM was published in the Federal Register on February 23, 2024 (89 FR 13652).

The NPRM proposes to require State title IV-E agencies to collect and report data elements on: (1) whether the state inquired with named entities as to whether the child is an Indian child as defined in ICWA and when the agency first discovered information indicating that the child is or may be an Indian child as defined in ICWA; (2) information on court determinations that ICWA applies for the child, and whether the testimony of one or more qualified expert witnesses was included for voluntary and involuntary terminations of parental rights, and removals; (3) whether the child’s parent or Indian custodian was sent notice in accordance with ICWA; (4) information on requests to transfer cases to tribal court; (5) information on meeting the placement preferences under ICWA; and (6) whether the court determined there was active efforts. This NPRM does not impose any burden or cost on Tribal title IV-E agencies because ICWA does not apply to Tribal title IV-E agencies, therefore, they do not have to report the data elements proposed in this NPRM. However, we are seeking input from Tribes.

ACF uses AFCARS data for a variety of requirements, including but not limited to providing national statistics on the child welfare population, budgeting, providing reports to Congress, and monitoring compliance with the titles IV-B and IV-E requirements.

The Tribal consultation is open to all tribal leaders or their designees and may address any aspect of the NPRM. In addition to participating in the tribal consultation webinar, ACF encourages Tribal leaders to submit comments in writing in response to the NPRM to The deadline for the receipt of written comments in response to the NPRM is April 23, 2024.

You may submit written comments to the NPRM in any of the following ways:

  • Federal eRulemaking Portal: Use this link for the NPRM, click the “Comment now!” button and follow the instructions for submitting comments:
    The Children’s Bureau recommends use of this method.
  • Email: Include docket number and/or RIN number in subject line of the message.

Additional information is provided in Information Memoranda ACYF-CB-IM-24-02.

If you have any questions regarding registration, please contact Bethany Imbody at