Matter of Welfare of M.S.S

In Matter of Welfare of M.S.S. (1997) 86 Wash.App. 127 [936 P.2d 36], the tribe was given less than 10 days' notice of a termination of parental rights proceeding. The tribe informed the social worker prior to the hearing that it did not intend to intervene or be involved in the proceeding. The Washington appellate court deemed the notice inadequate despite the communication from the tribe because of the possibility the tribe's decision was motivated by the time constraints imposed by the untimely notice. The court noted: "Ten days may be barely sufficient time for the tribe to ascertain whether the children are members, and if so, whether the tribe wants to intervene." (Id. at p. 41.) The court held: "In view of this short timeframe, substantial compliance means strict compliance--the full 10 days." (Ibid.)