Improvement Publications

Court Guides

Dependency court guides have been developed to assist those who are involved in the dependency court system. Below are guides for young children, older youth, parents, and caregivers.

Human Trafficking Overview

  • This document is an overview of the relevant federal and Florida law regarding human trafficking cases, as well as tips for how a judge can recognize these types of cases, steps to follow if a human trafficking victim appears in court, an initial list of remedies available for victims, service needs of victims, and an initial resource list.

What's Happening in Dependency Court - A Guide for Young Children

  • This booklet is intended for young children who are in court for their dependency hearings. It aims to introduce children to the dependency court process, the people who work in the judicial system, and the vocabulary that surrounds judicial proceedings. It is meant to be used as a teaching tool that may foster conversations between children and adults about the dependency court system, and as a game book that gives children who are in court something to do while they wait.

My Future Depends On It! A Guide to Dependency Court for Teens

  • This comic book is designed to help teenagers understand and navigate the dependency court process. It answers many common questions about foster care and the reunification process.

A Parent's Guide to Juvenile Dependency Court - Case Plan insert

  • This booklet is intended for parents who are involved in dependency court. It aims to introduce parents to the dependency court process, the people who work in the judicial system, and the vocabulary that surrounds judicial proceedings. This guide informs parents of their rights, explains what happens in court, and contains helpful information to help parents understand what is going on and why.

A Caregiver's Guide to Dependency Court

  • This guide is intended for caregivers of children who are in foster care, relative care, non-relative care, and pre-adoptive care. Caregivers are important in the court process because their knowledge assists the judges in making informed decisions about the safety and well-being of children. This guide informs caregivers of their rights, describes each dependency court hearing, provides helpful tips, and gives information about the court process for older youth who may be in their care.

Psychotropic Medications Judicial Reference Guide

  • This guide is intended to be used by Florida judges to learn about psychotropic medications, and their interaction with other drugs and with mental health disorders. It is not intended for dissemination to the public, and its use is as an informal guide, not as a substitute for professional medical guidance.