Investigates and protects the best interest of the children for whom the District Court appoints a Guardian Ad Litem. Appointments may occur by individual Court order or by the Local Rules of Civil Procedure in the following types of cases: terminations, adoptions, divorces, modifications, protective orders, suits affecting the parent-child relationship, habeas corpus, paternity and other similar cases involving the care and custody of children.
This is the second in a series of three guardian-related job classifications within the Courts job family. This classification investigates and protects the best interest of the children for whom the District Court appoints a Guardian Ad Litem. Duties performed are initially of a moderately complex nature and type within the scope of Guardian Ad Litem duties and then advance to the fully functioning complex level of Guardian duties. This classification may require a flexible work schedule in order to meet the needs of the department.
Duties and Responsibilities
Conducts forensic interviews and assessments of parents. Reviews legal documents and other forms of written or tangible items of evidence to be submitted by litigants at time of trial. Assesses and advocates the best interest of the child for who appointed in all aspects of the case, including all legal proceedings. Attends and participates in court hearing, depositions, mediations and any other activities associated with a Family Law matter to which a Guardian Ad Litem has been assigned. Appointments continue until the case is no longer active in the Court system or the Guardian is otherwise relieved by the Court. Interviews the children and each individual that the Guardian considers likely to have significant knowledge of the children's history and condition. Observes the children interacting at each home and at school and with any other individuals involved in the case in order to form an opinion for the Court in answering questions of conservatorship. Requests and reviews school, medical and psychological records on parents and children. Recommends appropriate therapeutic intervention where indicated. Monitors participation and progress in recommended or court-ordered parent education or counseling. Conducts and writes social studies for non-agency adoptions and other reports as directed by Court order. Sets hearings when necessary to report to the Court, to request the appointment of an Attorney Ad Litem for the children, or to request dismissal from a case. Files necessary motions, with the assistance of attorneys. Ensures that all required documentation is submitted prior to hearing of uncontested adoption or termination cases. Sets disputed matters for pre-trial. Provides written reports to the Court in adoptions, termination of parental rights suits and any other suit affecting the parent-child relationship. Monitors compliance with Court orders prior to final hearing. Maintains contact with Attorneys to facilitate investigation and settlement of cases. Participates in mediation and promotes out-of-court resolution of issues whenever possible and in the children's best interest. Attends all legal proceedings and provides recommendations and expert testimony to the Court. Provides public information on divorce, mental health, child development and co-parenting topics to groups and individuals. Provides immediate service on an on-call basis as Duty Guardian to the Court. Assists parents and/or attorneys who walk in with request for Guardian appointment or other divorce-related issues. Refers litigants to appropriate community resources, including facilitation of drug testing. Maintains case files and computer records on each case. May assist in providing training of staff and may present department and general public training activities. Performs other job-related duties as assigned.
Education and Experience:
Master's degree in one of the Social or Behavioral Sciences, Social Work, Sociology, Psychology, Counseling or Education AND three (3) years of increasingly responsible experience in casework with children, family counseling or mediation;
Any combination of education and experience that has been achieved and is equivalent to the stated education and experience and required knowledge, skills, and abilities sufficient to successfully perform the duties and responsibilities of this job.
Licenses, Registrations, Certifications, or Special Requirements:
Valid Texas Driver's License.
Bilingual in English and Spanish
Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC);
Licensed Social Worker (LSW);
Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist.
Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities:
Family law and the District Court system. Conciliation and mediation concepts. Policies, practices, procedures, and legal terminology related to court system. Federal, State, Local and County applicable laws, rules, regulations and guidelines. Psychological concepts of good behavior, social adjustment and emotional stability. Local social services, organizations and programs and the resources available. Computer equipment to include word processing, spreadsheets, databases and a variety of software packages. Business letter writing, grammar and punctuation, and report preparation. May be required to develop knowledge of and adhere to federal and state laws requiring the confidential handling of certain health information.
Assessing the medical, psychosocial and environmental status of clients. Negotiating, interviewing and investigating practices and techniques. Application of casework principles. Problem-solving and decision-making. Both verbal and written communication.
Accurately assess the present and future needs of a child, to present that child's case and advocate their best interests in court as well as out of court for as long as the case is in the court system. Evaluate psychological and other professional reports. Research, compile, analyze, interpret and prepare a variety of reports and maintain legal concepts. Perform in a stressful environment while maintaining a professional manner. Manage time well, perform multiple tasks and organize diverse activities. Establish and maintain effective working relationships with departmental clientele, representatives of outside agencies, other County employees and officials, attorneys, children, judges and the general public.
Work Environment & Other Information
Physical requirements include the ability to lift/carry up to 10-50 pounds, visual acuity, speech and hearing, hand and eye coordination and manual dexterity necessary to operate a computer and basic office equipment. Subject to standing, sitting, walking, climbing stairs, bending, stooping, crouching, kneeling, pushing, pulling, reaching, twisting, balancing, repetitive motion, and squatting to perform the essential functions. Subject to client and customer **** AM to 5:00 PM; Monday through Friday
Department: Juvenile Probation
Location: 1010 Lavaca St., Austin
Psychological Exam Required
Drug Test Required
Criminal, Driving, Education and Employment Background Check Required.
Employment at **MEMBERS ONLY**SIGN UP NOW***. comes with a full array of benefits. We offer comprehensive health insurance, a no-cost, on-site Health and Wellness clinic, longevity pay, paid vacations, sick time and personal holidays, not to mention an industry competitive salary structure and a friendly, stable work environment.
2018 **MEMBERS ONLY**SIGN UP NOW***. Benefit Guide
In this valuable benefit resource guide
you will find benefit summaries, eligibility requirements, costs, contact numbers and addresses as well as other general information on the benefits available to **MEMBERS ONLY**SIGN UP NOW***. Employees and Retirees.
Employees may join the **MEMBERS ONLY**SIGN UP NOW***. Credit Union which offers low-interest loans, savings plans through payroll deduction, safe deposit boxes and other benefits.
Employees may enroll in a tax- free sheltered investment plan through payroll deduction.
Employees may sign up for direct bank deposit.
Employee Assistance Program
**MEMBERS ONLY**SIGN UP NOW***. provides a confidential counseling and referral service free of charge to county employees and their family.
Membership in the American Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees Union is available through payroll deduction.
Employee Health & Wellness Clinic
Employees may access the clinic for a variety of wellness program and health care services with no co-pay, no deductible and no co-insurance costs.
An average of eleven paid holidays are designated by the **MEMBERS ONLY**SIGN UP NOW***. Commissioners Court at the beginning of each fiscal year.
Longevity pay is paid for each year completed after three years of continuous service. Peace Officers in a law enforcement activity, whose job requires state peace officer certification, receive pay after one year of certification.
A limited number of assigned parking spaces are available to employees in the Courthouse Complex.
Full-time employees are eligible for up to three paid personal holidays each calendar year. Part-time employees shall be granted personal holidays on a prorated basis. New employees earn personal holidays for the calendar year in which he/she begins employment, based on the month in which employment begins:
January – March
3 personal holidays
July - September
1 personal holiday
April - June
2 personal holidays
October - December
New employees are eligible to take personal holidays after 90 days of employment. Retirement
**MEMBERS ONLY**SIGN UP NOW***. is a member of the Texas County & District Retirement System with mandatory participation by certain classes of employees. Seven percent (7%) of the gross salary is deducted each pay period. An employee is fully vested after eight years of service. Benefits are prorated for part-time employees.
Employees earn sick leave at a rate of eight hours per month with unlimited accrual during employment. Part-time employees earn sick leave on a pro-rated basis.
Certain classes of full-time employees may receive reimbursement for fees associated with pre-approved, job related course work completed satisfactorily.
Based on years of county service, full-time employees earn vacation time at the following rates:
0 to 5 years
4.0 hours per pay period
6 to 10 years
4.5 hours per pay period
11 to 15 years
5.0 hours per pay period
16 to 20 years
5.5 hours per pay period
21 plus years
6.0 hours per pay period
Part-time employees earn vacation leave on a pro-rated basis. Workers' Compensation
The county provides all employees workers' compensation coverage with benefits in accordance with state statute, if the employee sustains an injury out of, or in the course of work.
Select the option that best describes your level of education and experience.
Master's Degree with 2 or more years of related experience
Bachelor's Degree with 4 or more years of related experience
Associate's Degree with 6 or more years of related experience
High School Diploma/GED and 8 or more years of related experience
None of the above
How many years of experience do you have in Social Services or a directly related field?
0 to 1 year
2 to 5 years
6 to 10 years
More than 11 years
Do you have case management experience?
Have you ever been the subject of an investigation and/or an alleged perpetrator in a sexual abuse and/or sexual harassment investigation?
If yes, please explain. If no, please put NA.
Have you been convicted of a Class A or Class B Misdemeanor in the past five (5) years (including deferred adjudication sentence)?
If yes, provide offense description and date of conviction. If no, please put N/A.
Have you been convicted of a felony within the past ten (10) years (including a deferred adjudication sentence)?
If yes, provide offense description and date of conviction. If no, please put N/A.
**MEMBERS ONLY**SIGN UP NOW***.
700 Lavaca Street, Suite 420
Austin, Texas, 78701
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