• Professor Annino files Cert Petition on Child’s Right to Counsel

    News has traveled at this point that FSU Professor Paolo Annino has filed a petition in the First DCA placing the issue of a child’s right to counsel squarely before the court. In his case, the child is fighting a TPR petition that is brought by DCF and supported by the GAL. The child moved […]

  • The Problem of LRM and Abandonment

    The mother appeals an order terminating her parental rights. She argues the court erred in denying her motion to dismiss the amended petition, which failed to allege reasonable efforts to preserve and reunify the family, that termination was not the least restrictive means of protecting the child, and that the mother was not responsible for the lack […]

  • Family and Foster Care Related SCOTUS Cases

    The 2011 Supreme Court Session kicked off yesterday. Family law is not much dealt with at the federal level, and this session is no exception. However, here are a few cases (and their OA dates) that may have some impact on families, and children and youth in and out of foster care: 10/3/11 – REYNOLDS v. […]

  • Florida Declines Jurisdiction Over Every Baby Conceived on Vacation There

    It is completely contrary to the legislative goals of the UCCJEA for Florida to assert jurisdiction to superintend the custody, shared parental responsibility, and visitation where the child is not and has never been a resident of this state. The mere fact of conception in this state is not such a tie to permit the […]

  • When every leaf is a flower

    Autumn started on the 23rd. It was a lazy end of summer, little going on, not even any substantive or ridiculous appellate opinions (except for the one about spanking as domestic violence, which I haven’t gotten to yet). It’s as if the dependency system has stabilized a bit, a finally–if temporarily–well-oiled machine. I know that’s […]

  • Is Civility Important?

  • Leave Them Kids Alone

    My favorite letter to the editor today. From jacksonville.com: SAGGY PANTS Leave kids alone I’m probably going to be the sole dissenter concerning the article Monday about teen fashion of wearing pants low. I am an adult with a college degree, and I feel that other adults are making far too big of a deal […]

  • ACLU and Navy Vet Sue DCF Over Drug Testing

    The Tampa Bay Online is reporting and my inbox was blowing up all night: the ACLU has filed suit against DCF Secretary Wilkins (in his official capacity of course) over the mandatory drug testing of TANF recipients. The lawsuit was inevitable, but the big question on everybody’s lips today is: will they serve Wilkins at […]

  • How Often Does Florida DCF Get Sued and Lose Big?

    The numbers don’t match up and there’s no explanation of why. For example, there were 19 sex abuse cases, but only 17 perpetrators. I’d also like to see the cases they lost/settled under $15,000. If there are 200 of those, then that’s significant. I’d also like an explanation as to why risk outlays plummeted 66% […]

  • A Small Pharmacy in Her Purse

    On appeal, the mother argues that drug tests showing the use of drugs prescribed to her cannot support the conclusion that she failed to substantially comply with her case plan. Certainly, the legitimate use of prescribed medications should not lead to a parent’s loss of parental rights, but that is not the situation here. On […]

  • Tweeting the Florida Dependency Summit #FLDS11

    I wrote the organizers of the Florida Dependency Summit about whether there would be a promoted hashtag for the event. I’m still hoping for a response. Until then, I propose #FLDS11 as the tag. Tell your friends and followers! From: Latham, Robert Sent: Sat 8/27/2011 5:13 PM To: ‘amyk@____’ Subject: summit on twitter? Hi Amy, […]

  • News and Notes: Teachers in MO, Children in France, Catholics in IL

    The Missouri law banning teachers from communicating with students and ex-students via the internet is temporary blocked.  Via, Volkh. France is struggling with a child’s right to know his or her parents. See, Les Enfants X: denied their true identity. Court rules Illinois can stop contracting with Catholic organizations that will not adopt to gay […]