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Diligent Search

Making a Diligent Effort to Locate Resources for Pennsylvania's Waiting Children

Download the SWAN LSI Diligent Search Packet | pdf

The SWAN LSI Diligent Search Packet contains vital information and forms to help paralegals and agency staff search for relatives or other people who may become a permanency resource for a child in the child welfare system.  The packet also contains information pertinent to individual Pennsylvania counties as well as information about international searches.

Since the first Diligent Search Packet was released in 2005, the focus of searching has changed as federal and state legislation and state initiatives have changed.  In 2024, SWAN LSI released the ninth edition of the SWAN LSI Diligent Search Packet, which continues to assist SWAN LSI paralegals and agency workers throughout Pennsylvania in complying with all mandates in their diligent search efforts. 

The term “diligent search” was incorporated into practice by the Statewide Adoption and Permanency Network’s Legal Services Initiative in 2003. SWAN LSI defines diligent search as a search conducted to locate parents, relatives or other potential permanency resources or connections for a child who is receiving services from or who is in the custody of an agency.  

The packet illustrates each county's unique efforts and procedures set in place to search for parents or other possible placement resources for children.  The packet also captures sample procedures and forms used by searchers.