Termination of Parental Rights Reversal Examples In California

In Neumann v. Melgar (2004) 121 Cal.App.4th 152, the trial court found the father abandoned his children, and terminated parental rights without reviewing the evaluator's report, interviewing the oldest child or considering whether to appoint independent legal counsel for the children. (Id. at p. 156.) The reviewing court upheld the finding of abandonment and vacated the judgment because the trial court had not complied with its statutory obligation to assess the best interests of the children before it terminated parental rights. (Ibid.) In In re Marcel N. (1991) 235 Cal.App.3d 1007, the reviewing court reversed the judgment terminating parental rights because the record did not contain facts concerning the father's current circumstances sufficient to justify freeing the children from his custody and control, and the record did not contain an explicit finding that termination was in the children's best interests. (Id. at pp. 1014-1015.)