Reinstatement of Parental Rights

Under Washington law, dependent children at least 12 years of age or older may file a legal action in juvenile court to reinstate the legal relationship with their birth or former adoptive parent whose rights were terminated under Chapter 13.34 RCW.  Children under 12 years of age may also file if the court first finds good cause to allow her to do so.    Parents may not file a legal action to reinstate a child-parent relationship in Washington. The minimum requirements for the the child are: she has been in out of home care for at least 3 years after the Termination of the Child-Parent Relationship order was signed by the court; the child has not achieved her permanent plan or she has achieved her permanent plan but it was not sustained.

For more information about these cases, please links to the following resources:

Revised Code of Washington 13.34.215


DCYF Reinstatement of Parental Rights Policy, No. 47351 


Office of Civil Legal Aid Children’s Representation Program Resources


University of Washington (UW) Court Improvement Training Academy (CITA) Benchbook Chapter on Reinstatement of Parental Rights

WDA Proposed Order Directing DOC To Provide Parent Telephonic Access to Hearings


Petition to Reinstate Parental Rights & Other Court Forms

Obtain other court forms for Reinstatement of Parental Rights proceedings here.  Please refer to RCW 13.34.215 and the applicable state and local court rules, if applicable, for more information.