40-6-502. Caretaker relative medical authorization affidavit -- use -- immunity -- format. (1) A caretaker relative of a child who has voluntarily been given custody of the child by a parent of the child has the same authority as a custodial parent of the child to consent to medical care for the child for which parental consent is usually required if:
(a) in leaving the child with the caretaker relative, the parent expressed no definite time period in which the parent would return for the child;
(b) the child is residing with the caretaker relative on a full-time basis;
(c) the caretaker relative is unable to contact the parent following the voluntary leaving of the child with the relative or the parent refuses to regain custody of the child after a written request by the relative to do so;
(d) no adequate provision, such as the appointment of a guardian ad litem or execution of a power of attorney, has otherwise been made for the medical care of the child; and
(e) a caretaker relative medical authorization affidavit is completed in compliance with this section.
(2) An affidavit is effective only if it is signed by the caretaker relative, under oath, before a notary public. A clear photographic copy of an affidavit completed in compliance with this section is sufficient in any instance in which an original is required by a health care provider.
(3) Unless the rights of a parent have been judicially terminated or unless the ability to give legal consent for the child to receive medical care for which parental consent is usually required has been granted to the caretaker relative pursuant to 40-4-211 and 40-4-228, a decision by a parent of the child communicated to the health care provider regarding the health care of the child supersedes a conflicting decision by a caretaker relative made pursuant to an affidavit completed in compliance with this section. However, a decision by a parent does not supersede a decision by a caretaker relative made pursuant to an affidavit completed in compliance with this section if the decision by the parent endangers the life of the child. A health care provider may require reasonable proof of authenticity of a decision by a parent intended to supersede a decision by a caretaker relative.
(4) (a) A public or private health care provider or a public or private school official who acts in good faith reliance on a caretaker relative medical authorization affidavit completed in compliance with this section and who has no actual knowledge of facts contrary to those indicated in the affidavit is not subject to civil liability or criminal prosecution or to a professional disciplinary procedure for an action that would have been proper if the facts had been as the health care provider believed them to be.
(b) This subsection (4) applies even if medical care is provided to a child against the wishes of a parent of that child if the health care provider rendering the service does not have actual knowledge of the parent's wishes.
(5) A health care provider who relies on an affidavit completed in compliance with this section has no obligation to make further inquiry or investigation.
(6) An affidavit completed in compliance with this section is effective for the earlier of:
(a) 6 months;
(b) until it has been revoked by the caretaker relative; or
(c) until the child no longer resides with the caretaker relative.
(7) If the child ceases to live with the caretaker relative or the caretaker relative revokes the affidavit, the caretaker relative shall provide written notice of that fact to all health care providers to whom the caretaker relative has given the affidavit or to whom the caretaker relative has caused the affidavit to be given.
(8) This section does not relieve a person from a violation of other law, and this section does not affect the rights of a child's parent except as provided in this section.
(9) A caretaker relative medical authorization affidavit is invalid unless it is written in substantially the following form and contains the warning provided for in paragraph 5 of the format below:
History: En. Sec. 2, Ch. 393, L. 2007.