Termination of Parental Rights

Issues: Termination under §§ 19b(3)(a)(i), (a)(ii), (c)(i), (c)(ii), (g), & (j); In re Frey; Principle that a petitioner cannot seek termination of parental rights when it intentionally creates the grounds on which termination is sought; In re B & J; Whether the DHS made reasonable efforts to reunify the respondent with the child; In re LE; The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)(42 USC § 12101 et seq.); In re Terry; In re Fried; Best interests of the children; In re White; In re Moss Minors

Court: Michigan Court of Appeals (Unpublished)

Case Name: In re Johnson/Kipp

e-Journal Number: 59268

Judge(s): Per Curiam – Fort Hood, Jansen, and Stephens

 

The court held that the trial court properly terminated the respondent-mother's parental rights to the children where at least one statutory ground for termination existed and it was in the children's best interests. As to her argument that the trial court erred by finding that the cited statutory grounds for termination were established by clear and convincing evidence, the court found that the trial court erred to the extent that it applied §§ (a)(i) and (ii) as those sections "were apparently intended to apply to the children's fathers." Further, there may not have been "sufficient evidence to prove the statutory ground set forth" in § (c)(i). However, there was sufficient evidence to support termination under the remaining sections. As to § (c)(ii), it held that "the trial court did not clearly err by finding that" other conditions existed that "were not likely to be rectified within a reasonable time given the children's ages." Further, as to § (g), it found that "[b]ecause respondent had not overcome the barriers to reunification after more than a year and never identified a relative who could provide for the children in her place, the trial court did not clearly err by finding that she would not be able to provide proper care and custody within a reasonable time given the children's ages." In addition, as to § (j), it found that the evidence showed that "the children had 'a disorganized attachment' to respondent," that she "still had difficulty with parenting" and that she "did not have stable housing or a verifiable source of income with which to support the children." The court also rejected her claim that the DHS failed to provide her with reasonable services to facilitate reunification, holding that "the lack of cooperation on respondent's part does not constitute a failure to provide reasonable services on petitioner's part." As to her contention that the DHS failed to accommodate her special needs under the ADA, she failed to show that the use of a family aide "was not a reasonable accommodation" and failed to identify "any additional services that she believes should have been offered or shown that she 'would have fared better' had those additional services been offered." Finally, the court held that the trial court did not err by finding that termination was in the children's best interests, noting that they were doing well in foster care, that respondent was not visiting, and that she could not support them. Affirmed.

 

Full Text Opinion

Issues: Termination under §§ 19b(3)(c)(i) & (g); Best interests of the child; In re Olive/Metts Minors; In re VanDalen; In re Trejo Minors

Court: Michigan Court of Appeals (Unpublished)

Case Name: In re Poley

e-Journal Number: 59265

Judge(s): Per Curiam – Cavanagh, Meter, and Shapiro

 

The court held that the trial court properly terminated the respondent-mother's parental rights to the child where at least one statutory ground for termination existed and it was in the child's best interests. On appeal, the court rejected her argument that the trial court erroneously found statutory grounds to terminate her parental rights. It found that termination was proper under § (g), noting she "had a history of substance abuse and mental health issues," was "unable to provide proper care and custody," and would not be "'able to provide proper care and custody within a reasonable time considering' the minor child's age." It also rejected her argument that the trial court erred by finding that termination of her parental rights was in the child's best interests. It noted that the record did not support that the child would be safe in her care, and that she was unable to provide "routine, stability, and consistency" at the time of termination "given that she had been employed less than one month before termination and lived with her boyfriend, who was aggressive and paid for their housing through a permanent housing voucher." Further, "foster parents were willing to adopt her, and the record supports that she was thriving in their care and that the foster parents and [the child] loved each other." Affirmed.

 

Full Text Opinion
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