(1) Notwithstanding any other provisions of this title to the contrary, it is the
intent of the general assembly that the court shall protect and promote the best interests
of the children who are the subjects of proceedings held pursuant to this part 2 while
giving due regard to the interests of any other individuals affected.
(2) The general assembly hereby finds and declares that:
(a) It is beneficial for a child placed for adoption to be able to continue relationships
with his or her brothers and sisters, regardless of age, in order that the siblings
may share their strengths and association in their everyday and often common experiences;
(b) When parents and other adult relatives are no longer available to a child, the
child's siblings constitute his or her biological family;
(c) When placing children in adoptive placements, efforts should be made to place
siblings together, unless there is a danger of specific harm to a child or it is not
in the child's or children's best interests to be placed together. The general assembly further finds that if the county department locates an appropriate,
capable, willing, and available joint placement for all of the children in the sibling
group, there should be a rebuttable presumption that placement of the entire sibling
group in the joint placement is in the best interests of the children. Such presumption should be rebuttable by a preponderance of the evidence that placement
of the entire sibling group in the joint placement is not in the best interests of
a child or of the children.
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