Section 39.806(1)(i) now has an expiration date

Three years. As noted above, Appellants’ parental rights were terminated for their previous child, D.B., on June 12, 2009. Almost three years later, on March 31, 2012, V.B. was removed from Appellants’ custody. This time frame is relevant under the holding of F.L. We find that, as a matter of law, such a time frame contains very […]

Judge Griffin in the Fifth: 39.806(1)(j) Makes No Sense

Judge Griffin dissented in part from a TPR appeal to point out the lunacy of section 39.806(1)(j): I am unable to concur in the decision to remand for removal of the termination under Section 39.806(1)(j), Florida Statutes (2011). That section was added to the list of grounds for termination of parental rights in 2008, and, […]

Second DCA En Banc Clarifies TPR Nexus Requirement, Concurrence Dissects LRM

The Second DCA issued an incredible en banc opinion yesterday, clarifying its nexus requirements for TPR of siblings. In re Z.C., — So.3d —-, 2012 WL 1605425 (Fla. 2nd DCA). Authored by Chief Judge Silberman (joined by seven other judges), the opinion holds: DCF argues that the nexus test applied by this court is something different […]

Somewhere Between Henderson and M.M.: TPR’ing for Poverty

The trial court found that the Father breached his case plan in four material aspects: (1) intentionally absconding to Oklahoma, (2) concealing the fact of his relocation to Oklahoma, (3) failing to obtain approved housing, and (4) continuing to neglect N.R.-G. despite the completion of parenting classes. Because these breaches did not pose any danger to N.R.-G.’s well-being and […]

The Power of Experts in Child Welfare Law

The basis of the petition to terminate the mother’s rights was the alleged insufficiency of her attempts to keep the children’s mentally ill and highly abusive father from her home and away from the children. There is no allegation that the mother has otherwise harmed her children or has not provided for their care. With […]

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 […]

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 […]

C.G. v. DCF: Judicial Notice Is Ok

C.G. v. Department of Children and Families — So.3d —-, 2011 WL 3250545 Fla.App. 3 Dist.,2011. August 01, 2011. The only thing interesting about this TPR appeal is the discussion on judicial notice. The Mother argued that the trial court erred in judicially noticing the dependency orders because they were entered at less than clear-and-convincing […]