Mendocino County Superior Court Rules, Rule 16.8
Northern California Local Court Rules
Mendocino County
Superior Court
Superior Court of California County of Mendocino Local Rules of Court
Chapter 16. Juvenile Court Rules (Refs & Annos)

Rule 16.8. Informal Exchange of Juvenile Records (Renumbered)

A. For the purpose of this rule, "juvenile records" include those records described in CA Rule of Court 5.552, and all records maintained by the juvenile division of the Mendocino County Probation Department ("Probation") and the Child Protective Services division of the Mendocino County Department of Social Services ("CPS"), even if the Departments' contacts with a child or the child's family are informal and juvenile court proceedings are not instituted. (T.N.G. vs. Superior Court (1971) 4C.3d 767, 780-781)

B. Except as provided in subsection (C) all requests for inspection and disclosure of juvenile records shall be governed by the procedures set forth in W&I 827, CA Rules of Court 5.552, and Local Rule 16.8.

C. Notwithstanding the policy that juvenile records should remain confidential, the law recognizes that it is in the best interest of children that exceptions to confidentiality be made so that persons investigating or working with children and their families may obtain complete, prompt and accurate information concerning the child and the family (See, e.g., W&I 827(a)(1)(J), (K))

The court hereby finds that a limited and informal disclosure of juvenile records by Probation and Child Protective Services to the agencies, individuals and organizations listed below on a "need to know" basis will benefit children and their families by avoiding duplication of investigative efforts, and by allowing the agencies, individuals and organizations who work with, treat, or make recommendations regarding children and their families to promptly access relevant information. This process will benefit the court by ensuring that agencies, individuals and organizations who work with children and families have prompt access to all information which may be relevant in determining what is in a child's best interest. The public interest in achieving these goals outweighs the confidentiality interests reflected in W&I 827 and 10850, et.seq. and establishes good cause for this rule.

1. Child Protective Services and Probation may provide verbal information regarding, allow inspection of, or provide copies of, relevant juvenile records to the following agencies, persons and organizations on an "as needed" basis:

(a) Probation;

(b) Child Protective Services;

(c) Facilitators of Child Protective Services parenting programs, including but not limited to, the Intake Support Group and the Family Empowerment Group;

(d) Mendocino County Mental Health Services, or any private psychologist, psychiatrist, or mental health professional ordered by the Juvenile Court to examine or treat any child who falls within the jurisdiction of the juvenile court, and his or her parent or guardian;

(e) Foster Family Agencies;

(f) Any hospital where a child is an inpatient for psychiatric reasons, for the purpose of treatment or discharge planning;

(g) Redwood Coast Regional Center;

(h) Any sexual abuse treatment program or victims' group to which a child or his or her parent or guardian is referred for treatment by the Juvenile Court;

(i) Any substance abuse treatment provider, including but not limited to the Mendocino County Alcohol and Other Drugs Program (AODP), to which a child or his or her parent or guardian is referred to for treatment by the Juvenile Court;

(j) Victim/Witness coordinators for the State of California Victims of Crime Programs;

(k) Any domestic violence and/or anger management treatment program to which a child or his or her parent or guardian is referred to for treatment by the Juvenile Court;

(l) The designated trial representative or the Indian Child Welfare Worker for any federally recognized Native American Indian tribes located in Mendocino County;

(m) A judge or commissioner assigned to a family law case with issues concerning custody or visitation;

(n) The family court mediator or court-appointed evaluator conducting an assessment or evaluation of child custody, visitation or guardianship for the family or Juvenile Court;

(o) The Mendocino County Victim Offender Reconciliation Program (VORP).

2. Any disclosure or exchange of information authorized by subsection (c) of this rule shall be subject to the following conditions:

a. A request for information exchange of Juvenile Records shall be prepared on form JVMC-3 (Appendix, form 3)

b. Probation and Child Protective Services shall first establish to the agency's satisfaction that the party requesting the juvenile records is in fact a member of an agency or organization, described in subsection (c) of this rule, or is an individual authorized to receive the information;

c. Information identifying the reporting party or source of referral shall be redacted prior to disclosure of juvenile records, and shall remain confidential as required by law (Penal Code 11167, 11167.5);

d. If an agency, person or organization which has received juvenile records pursuant to this rule desires to disclose the information to a third party, it shall make a written application to the Juvenile Court for permission to disclose such information pursuant to W&I 827 and CA Rule of Court 5.552;

e. Juvenile Records obtained pursuant to this rule shall be used exclusively in the investigation and/or treatment conducted the agency, organization or person described in subsection (c), and in any Juvenile or Family Court proceedings following the investigation or treatment;

f. Nothing in this rule is intended to limit any disclosure of information by an agency which is otherwise required or permitted by law.

3. If Probation or Child Protective Services receives a request for disclosure of juvenile records which it deems to fall outside the scope of informal disclosure authorized by this rule, the agency shall deny the request and refer the requesting party to the provisions of W&I 827, CA Rule of Court 5.552 and Local Rule 16.8.


Formerly Rule 16.10, eff. Jan. 1, 1999. As amended, eff. July 1, 2004; July 1, 2005. Renumbered Rule 16.8, eff. Jan. 1, 2010.

Mendocino County Superior Court Rules, Rule 16.8, CA R MENDOCINO SUPER CT Rule 16.8

Current with amendments received through 3/1/2011



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