ILNews

Mom’s progress leads court to reverse termination

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A Grant County mother who lost parental rights to twin children won a reversal of the termination order after the Indiana Court of Appeals noted her progress in areas of concern to the Department of Child Services.

The twins were born in 2007, and since then mother K.B. and the children’s father were arrested after a domestic dispute, and K.B. had been accepted into a drug court program for treatment of a prescription drug abuse problem. She has complied with drug court terms, has maintained an appropriate home, has been working and visiting regularly with her girls, the order noted.

“In light of the undisputed evidence that mother had eight months of solid progress in each area of concern, we conclude that DCS did not meet its burden of demonstrating that the conditions resulting in removal would not be remedied. Therefore, we reverse,” Judge Terry Crone wrote in a unanimous opinion.

The court said there was evidence that K.B. was invested in her recovery through the drug court process and had shown no cause for concern during the previous eight months.

“When a parent has been involved with drugs or an abusive relationship, there will always be concern about relapse. However, this is not a case where the parent’s progress has been inconsistent or last-minute. We do not feel that it is necessary to speculate about mother’s potential for relapse. There are no longer any immediate concerns about her ability to parent the twins, and her ability to cope with the added responsibility can be quickly assessed without substantial risk of harm to the twins,” Crone wrote.

The order said that while the ruling will cause some disruptions in the twins’ lives, they had a loving relationship with their mother and termination also would be a disruption.

“It is well established that the involuntary termination of parental rights is an extreme measure that is designed to be used as a last resort when all other reasonable efforts have failed,” Crone wrote in reversing.
 

 

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  2. The practitioners and judges who hail E-filing as the Saviour of the West need to contain their respective excitements. E-filing is federal court requires the practitioner to cram his motion practice into pigeonholes created by IT people. Compound motions or those seeking alternative relief are effectively barred, unless the practitioner wants to receive a tart note from some functionary admonishing about the "problem". E-filing is just another method by which courts and judges transfer their burden to practitioners, who are the really the only powerless components of the system. Of COURSE it is easier for the court to require all of its imput to conform to certain formats, but this imposition does NOT improve the quality of the practice of law and does NOT improve the ability of the practitioner to advocate for his client or to fashion pleadings that exactly conform to his client's best interests. And we should be very wary of the disingenuous pablum about the costs. The courts will find a way to stick it to the practitioner. Lake County is a VERY good example of this rapaciousness. Any one who does not believe this is invited to review the various special fees that system imposes upon practitioners- as practitioners- and upon each case ON TOP of the court costs normal in every case manually filed. Jurisprudence according to Aldous Huxley.

  3. Any attorneys who practice in federal court should be able to say the same as I can ... efiling is great. I have been doing it in fed court since it started way back. Pacer has its drawbacks, but the ability to hit an e-docket and pull up anything and everything onscreen is a huge plus for a litigator, eps the sole practitioner, who lacks a filing clerk and the paralegal support of large firms. Were I an Indiana attorney I would welcome this great step forward.

  4. Can we get full disclosure on lobbyist's payments to legislatures such as Mr Buck? AS long as there are idiots that are disrespectful of neighbors and intent on shooting fireworks every night, some kind of regulations are needed.

  5. I am the mother of the child in this case. My silence on the matter was due to the fact that I filed, both in Illinois and Indiana, child support cases. I even filed supporting documentation with the Indiana family law court. Not sure whether this information was provided to the court of appeals or not. Wish the case was done before moving to Indiana, because no matter what, there is NO WAY the state of Illinois would have allowed an appeal on a child support case!

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