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Juvenile Law

Juvenile Law Supreme Court Opinion

   by Booth, George

 https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=4039

SC20245 - In re Teagan K.-O. ("This case requires us to consider whether a Connecticut trial court has subject matter jurisdiction over a petition to adjudicate a newborn child neglected on the basis of "predictive neglect" when the parents relocated to another state shortly before the child's birth, purportedly with no intention of returning, and that state determined that Connecticut would be a more convenient forum to adjudicate this matter. The respondent father appeals from the trial court's decision denying his motion to dismiss the petition filed by the petitioner, the Commissioner of Children and Families, to adjudicate the respondents' child, Teagan K.-O., neglected. The father contends that, irrespective of the fact that a petition to terminate the respondents' parental rights with respect to another child of theirs was pending in Connecticut when they relocated to Florida, a Connecticut trial court cannot exercise subject matter jurisdiction over Teagan's neglect petition because any neglect of her would never occur in this state. The commissioner contends that the determination by a Florida court that this state would be a more appropriate forum provided a proper basis for the Connecticut trial court's subject matter jurisdiction under the Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement Act (UCCJEA), which has been adopted by both states. See General Statutes §§ 46b-115 through 46b-115gg; Fla. Stat. Ann. § 61.501 et seq. (West 2012). We agree with the father's jurisdictional argument. The trial court, therefore, improperly denied his motion to dismiss the neglect petition.")


Juvenile Law Appellate Court Opinion

   by Booth, George

 https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=4018

AC43478 - In re Corey C. (Termination of parental rights; whether Department of Children and Families made reasonable efforts to reunify respondent father with minor child; "The respondent, Corey C., appeals from the judgment of the trial court terminating his parental rights with respect to his biological minor son, Corey C., Jr., pursuant to General Statutes § 17a-112 (j) (3) (B) (i). The respondent claims that the court improperly (1) concluded that the Department of Children and Families (department) made reasonable efforts to reunify him with Corey and that he was unable or unwilling to benefit from the department's reunification efforts, (2) concluded that he failed to achieve such a degree of personal rehabilitation as would encourage the belief that, within a reasonable time, considering Corey's age and needs, the respondent could assume a responsible position in Corey's life, and (3) compared his suitability as a parent, and that of Corey's biological mother, to that of Corey's foster parent during the adjudicatory phase of the termination proceeding. We affirm the judgment of the trial court.")


Juvenile Law Appellate Court Opinion

   by Booth, George

 https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=4003

AC43251 - In re Omar I. ("The self-represented respondent father, Ammar A. I. appeals from the judgments of the trial court terminating his parental rights pursuant to General Statutes § 17a-112 (j) (3) (B) (i) as to three of his biological minor children, the petitioners, Omar, Safiyah, and Muneer (children), and denying his motion to revoke the court's order committing the children to the care, custody, and guardianship of the Commissioner of Children and Families (commissioner). The respondent claims that (1) judicial bias deprived him of a fair trial, (2) the court improperly found that he failed to achieve such a degree of personal rehabilitation as would encourage the belief that, within a reasonable period of time, considering the ages and needs of the children, he could assume a responsible position in the children's lives, (3) the court improperly found that the termination of his parental rights was in the children's best interests, (4) the court improperly found that the Department of Children and Families (department) made reasonable efforts to reunify him with his children, (5) the department was estopped from supporting the petitions brought by the children to terminate his parental rights, and (6) the court improperly denied his motion to revoke the court's order that committed the children to the care and custody of the commissioner. We affirm the judgments of the trial court.")


Juvenile Law Appellate Court Opinion

   by Townsend, Karen

 https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=3904

AC42961, AC42962, AC42963, AC42964 - In re Gabriel C. (Termination of parental rights; motion to disqualify counsel acting as minor child’s GAL on ground that attorney was previously mother’s GAL; “On appeal, the respondent claims that the court improperly failed to order, sua sponte, an evaluation of her competency to assist her counsel at trial, in violation of her due process rights under the fourteenth amendment to the United States constitution. We affirm the judgment of the court.”)


Juvenile Law Appellate Court Opinion

   by Townsend, Karen

 https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=3891

AC43066 - In re Geoffrey G. (Termination of parental rights; review sought under State v. Golding, 213 Conn. 233, 239–40, 567 A.2d 823 (1989), as modified by In re Yasiel R., 317 Conn. 773, 781, 120 A.3d 1188 (2015); "On appeal, the respondent claims that the court improperly failed to order, sua sponte, an evaluation of her competency to assist her counsel at trial, in violation of her due process rights under the fourteenth amendment to the United States constitution. We affirm the judgment of the court")


Juvenile Law Appellate Court Opinions

   by Penn, Michele

 https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=3853

    • AC43032 - In re Brian P. ("As the trial court aptly observed, "[t]his is another sad case involving opiates and their invidious harm to parents' lives and families." The respondents, Jennifer L. (mother) and Brian P. (father), appeal from the judgment of the trial court rendered in favor of the petitioner, the Commissioner of Children and Families, terminating their parental rights with respect to the minor child, Brian P. On appeal, the respondents claim that the court improperly (1) found that they had failed to achieve a sufficient degree of personal rehabilitation, (2) failed to determine the needs of Brian P. before deciding whether they had failed to rehabilitate, and (3) found that termination of their parental rights was in the best interest of Brian P. We affirm the judgment of the trial court.")
    • AC43119 - In re Brian P. ("The paternal grandmother of the minor child and proposed intervenor, Susan P., appeals from the denial of her motion to intervene, which was filed following the judgment of the trial court granting the petition of the Commissioner of Children and Families (commissioner) to terminate the parental rights of Brian P. (father) and Jennifer L. (mother) with respect to the minor child, Brian P. We conclude that we lack subject matter jurisdiction and, accordingly, dismiss the appeal.")
    • AC43119 - In re Walker C. ("The respondent mother appeals from the judgment of the trial court terminating her parental rights with respect to her minor child, Walker C. III (child).In the termination of parental rights petition, the petitioner, the Commissioner of Children and Families (commissioner), alleged that the respondent had failed to achieve such degree of personal rehabilitation as would encourage the belief that within a reasonable time, considering the age and needs of the child, she could assume a responsible position in the life of the child pursuant to General Statutes § 17a-112 (j) (3) (B) (i). On appeal, the respondent claims that (1) the court's finding that the child's attorney argued in favor of the termination of the respondent's parental rights is clearly erroneous, (2) the court's error was not harmless because there was insufficient evidence tending to support termination of parental rights over permanent transfer of guardianship, and (3) there was considerable evidence tending to show that a permanent transfer of guardianship was in the child's best interest.We affirm the judgment of the trial court.")


              Juvenile Law Appellate Court Opinion

                 by Townsend, Karen

               https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=3827

              AC42870 - In re Yolanda V. (Termination of parental rights; “She contends that the court improperly concluded that (1) she failed to achieve the requisite degree of personal rehabilitation required by General Statutes § 17a-112, and (2) termination of her parental rights was in the best interests of the children. We affirm the judgments of the trial court”).


              Juvenile Law Appellate Court Opinion

                 by Townsend, Karen

               https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=3811

              SC20267 - In re Tresin J. (Termination of parental rights pursuant to General Statutes § 17a-112 (j) (3) (D); “In this certified appeal, we consider whether the parental rights of a father were properly terminated for lack of an ongoing parent-child relationship when, at the time of the termination trial, the six year old child had no knowledge or memory of his father, who had been incarcerated when the child was two years old…the respondent claims that the trial court should have applied the virtual infancy and interference exceptions to the lack of an ongoing parent-child relationship ground for the termination of parental rights because Tresin was only two years old when the respondent’s incarceration separated them, and the circumstances of this case, particularly the deficiencies of Tresin’s mother, rendered contact impossible during his incarceration. In light of our recent explication of these exceptions in In re Jacob W., 330 Conn. 744, 200 A.3d 1091 (2019), we disagree with the respondent’s claims. Accordingly, we affirm the judgment of the Appellate Court”).


              Juvenile Law Appellate Court Opinion

                 by Townsend, Karen

               https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=3775

              AC42678 - In re Cameron W. (Termination of parental rights petition pursuant to § 17a-112 (j) (3) (E), on the ground that the respondent failed to rehabilitate; “The respondent claims that the court improperly found that (1) she was unable or unwilling to benefit from reunification efforts and (2) the Department of Children and Families (department) made reasonable efforts to reunify her with her child. We affirm the judgment of the trial court.”).


              Juvenile Law Appellate Court Opinions

                 by Zigadto, Janet

               https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=3720

              AC42534 - In re Anthony L. (Termination of parental rights; "The respondent mother appeals from the judgments of the trial court rendered in favor of the petitioner, the Commissioner of Children and Families, terminating her parental rights with respect to each of the three oldest of her four minor children on the grounds that the respondent failed to achieve a sufficient degree of personal rehabilitation pursuant to General Statutes § 17a-112 (j) (3) (B) (i). On appeal, the respondent claims that her and her children's substantive due process rights were violated as a result of the trial court's analysis of whether termination of her parental rights was in the children's best interests. Specifically, the respondent claims that the court's failure to conduct a factual inquiry into the petitioner's three permanency plans, which called for the termination of her parental rights and adoption, in its best interest analysis denied her substantive due process of law. She claims that, because adoption was not going to occur immediately, due process required the court to determine whether the permanency plans secured a more permanent and stable life for each of the children compared to that which she could provide if she were given time to rehabilitate herself.

              The record, however, contains insufficient evidence in support of such a claim because it was not raised and pursued by the respondent during trial. Neither the petitioner nor the court were aware, during trial, that it would be asserted as a claim on appeal. Accordingly, for the reasons set forth herein, we decline to review the respondent's unpreserved claim and, therefore, affirm the judgments of the trial court.")

              AC42606 - In re Kadon M. (Child neglect; "The respondent mother appeals from the judgment of the trial court transferring guardianship of her son, Kadon M., to his paternal grandmother. On appeal, the respondent claims that the trial court improperly denied the oral motion of the attorney for Kadon M. to appoint a guardian ad litem. We disagree and, accordingly, affirm the judgment of the trial court.")


              Juvenile Law Supreme Court Opinion

                 by Townsend, Karen

               https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=3695

              SC20151 - In re Taijha H.-B. (Termination of Parental Rights; Practice Book § 79a-3; appointed attorney declined to pursue an appeal; “The principal issue presented by this certified appeal is whether an appellate review attorney appointed to represent an indigent parent in an appeal from the termination of his or her parental rights must follow the procedure set forth in Anders v. California, 386 U.S. 738, 87 S. Ct. 1396, 18 L. Ed. 2d 493 (1967), before being permitted to withdraw from representation on the ground that he or she is unable to identify any nonfrivolous basis for appeal. We hold that when, as in the present case, the circumstances are such that the indigent parent has a constitutional right to appellate counsel, counsel may not be permitted to withdraw without, first, demonstrating, whether in the form of an Anders brief or in the context of a hearing, that the record has been thoroughly reviewed for potential meritorious issues, and, second, taking steps sufficient to facilitate review of the case, by the indigent parent and the presiding court, for the purpose of a determination as to whether the attorney accurately concluded that any appeal would be meritless”.)


              Juvenile Law Appellate Court Opinion

                 by Townsend, Karen

               https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=3580

              AC42633 - In re Adrian K. (“The respondent father, Luis K., appeals from the judgment of the trial court denying his motion to dismiss an order of temporary custody and modifying the dispositive order from protective supervision with the mother to commitment to the custody of the petitioner, the Commissioner of Children and Families. The respondent claims that (1) the court improperly denied his motion to dismiss the order of temporary custody for lack of subject matter jurisdiction, and (2) the court’s denial of his motion to dismiss violated his right to due process under the fourteenth amendment to the United States constitution. We disagree and, accordingly, affirm the judgment of the trial court.”)


              Juvenile Law Appellate Court Opinion

                 by Booth, George

               https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=3559

              AC42499 - In re Skylar F. (Child neglect; "The respondent father appeals from the judgment of the trial court denying his motion to open the judgment of neglect that was rendered after the respondent was defaulted for his failure to attend a case status conference. On appeal, the respondent claims that the court improperly denied his motion to open because the record does not support a finding that he received "actual adequate notice of the [case status] conference in violation of his rights to the due process of law." We disagree and, accordingly, affirm the judgment of the trial court.")


              Juvenile Law Appellate Court Opinion

                 by Townsend, Karen

               https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=3547

              AC42478 - In re Leo L. (Third party; motion to transfer guardianship to grandfather; (“On appeal, the intervenor contends that the court erroneously determined that the transfer of guardianship would not be in the children’s best interests and, thus, abused its discretion in denying his motion. We disagree and, accordingly, affirm the judgment of the trial court.”)


              Juvenile Law Appellate Court Opinion

                 by Townsend, Karen

               https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=3523

              AC41830, AC41889 - In re Anaishaly C. (Claim that there was no evidence that respondents' use of marijuana affected their ability to parent, and that because law concerning criminalization of marijuana had changed, that change had to be reflected in law concerning child protection. “The respondents contend that the court improperly concluded that (1) they failed to achieve the requisite degree of personal rehabilitation required by General Statutes § 17a-112, and (2) termination of their parental rights was in the best interests of the children. We affirm the judgments of the trial court.”)


              Juvenile Law Appellate Court Opinion

                 by Townsend, Karen

               https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=3514

              AC42512 - In re Natalia M. (“On appeal, the respondent claims that the Department of Children and Families (department) violated his rights to due process of law by failing to provide adequate visitation with his child, which, he claims, ultimately led the court to terminate his parental rights after erroneously concluding that the department had made reasonable efforts at reunification, pursuant to § 17a-112 (j) (1). The respondent does not claim that the court erred in its conclusion that he was unable or unwilling to benefit from reunification efforts. Because the respondent challenges only one of the two bases for the court’s determination that § 17a-112 (j) (1) had been satisfied, we conclude that the respondent’s appeal is moot.”)


              Juvenile Law Appellate Court Opinion

                 by Townsend, Karen

               https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=3416

              AC41709 - In re Avia M. ("The respondent mother appeals from the judgment of the trial court terminating her parental rights with respect to her daughter, Avia M. (child). On appeal, the respondent claims that the trial court improperly concluded that the petitioner, the Commissioner of Children and Families, proved by clear and convincing evidence that (1) the Department of Children and Families made reasonable efforts to reunify her, (2) she was unable or unwilling to achieve the requisite degree of personal rehabilitation, and (3) it was in the child’s best interest to terminate her parental rights. We affirm the judgment of the trial court.")


              Juvenile Law Appellate Court Opinion

                 by Townsend, Karen

               https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=3399

              AC41875- In re Malachi E. (“On appeal, the respondent claims that the court erred in determining that the termination of her parental rights was in the best interest of the child because (1) the court relied entirely on its adjudicatory determination that the respondent had failed to achieve sufficient personal rehabilitation, and (2) there was no evidence to support its determination that the termination of her parental rights was in the best interest of the child. We affirm the judgment of the trial court.”)


              Juvenile Law Appellate Court Opinion

                 by Townsend, Karen

               https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=3379

              AC41819 - In re Bianca K. ("On appeal the respondent claims that the court improperly concluded that (1) by the clear and convincing evidence adduced at the termination hearing, she had failed to achieve sufficient personal rehabilitation within the meaning of General Statutes § 17a-112 (j) (3) (B) (i), and (2) that the termination of her parental rights was in the best interest of the child. We affirm the judgment of the trial court.")


              Juvenile Law Appellate Court Opinions

                 by Townsend, Karen

               https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=3353

              AC41577 - In re Angelina M. ("The self-represented respondent mother appeals from the judgment of the trial court terminating her parental rights as to Angelina M., her minor child. She contends that the court improperly concluded that (1) she failed to achieve the requisite degree of personal rehabilitation required by General Statutes § 17a-112 and (2) termination of her parental rights was in the best interest of the child. We affirm the judgment of the trial court.")

              AC41829 - In re Tresin J. ("On appeal, the respondent claims that the trial court erred when it determined, pursuant to General Statutes § 17a-112 (j) (3) (D), that no ongoing parent-child relationship exists between the respondent and Tresin. We affirm the judgment of the trial court.")


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