(a)(1) A judgment in a proceeding under Section 300 may be appealed in the same manner as any final judgment, and any subsequent order may be appealed as an order after judgment. However, that order or judgment shall not be stayed by the appeal, unless, pending the appeal, suitable provision is made for the maintenance, care, and custody of the person alleged or found to come within the provisions of Section 300 , and unless the provision is approved by an order of the juvenile court. The appeal shall have precedence over all other cases in the court to which the appeal is taken.
(2) A judgment or subsequent order entered by a referee shall become appealable whenever proceedings pursuant to Section 252 , 253 , or 254 have become completed or, if proceedings pursuant to Section 252 , 253 , or 254 are not initiated, when the time for initiating the proceedings has expired.
(3) An appellant unable to afford counsel, shall be provided a free copy of the transcript in any appeal.
(4) The record shall be prepared and transmitted immediately after filing of the notice of appeal, without advance payment of fees. If the appellant is able to afford counsel, the county may seek reimbursement for the cost of the transcripts under subdivision (d) of Section 68511.3 of the Government Code as though the appellant had been granted permission to proceed in forma pauperis.
(b)(1) In any appellate proceeding in which the child is an appellant, the court of appeal shall appoint separate counsel for the child. If the child is not an appellant, the court of appeal shall appoint separate counsel for the child if the court of appeal determines, after considering the recommendation of the trial counsel or guardian ad litem appointed for the child pursuant to subdivision (e) of Section 317 , Section 326.5 , and California Rule of Court 1448 , that appointment of counsel would benefit the child. In order to assist the court of appeal in making its determination under this subdivision, the trial counsel or guardian ad litem shall make a recommendation to the court of appeal that separate counsel be appointed in any case in which the trial counsel or guardian ad litem determines that, for the purposes of the appeal, the child's best interests cannot be protected without the appointment of separate counsel, and shall set forth the reasons why the appointment is in the child's best interests. The court of appeal shall consider that recommendation when determining whether the child would benefit from the appointment of counsel. The Judicial Council shall implement this provision by adopting a rule of court on or before July 1, 2007, to set forth the procedures by which the trial counsel or guardian ad litem may participate in an appeal, as well as the factors to be considered by the trial counsel or guardian ad litem in making a recommendation to the court of appeal, including, but not limited to, the extent to which there exists a potential conflict between the interests of the child and the interests of any respondent.
(2) The Judicial Council shall report to the Legislature on or before July 1, 2008, information regarding the status of appellate representation of dependent children, the results of implementing this subdivision, any recommendations regarding the representation of dependent children in appellate proceedings made by the California Judicial Council's Blue Ribbon Commission on Children in Foster Care, any actions taken, including rules of court proposed or adopted, in response to those recommendations or taken in order to comply with the Child Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act, as well as any recommendations for legislative change that are deemed necessary to protect the best interests of dependent children in appellate proceedings or ensure compliance with the Child Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act.
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