Child Welfare Case Compendium

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Results: 400
Case Name & Citation Case Description
In re Z.V.A.
___ N.C. ___ (Dec. 6, 2019)
The court did not abuse its discretion in not conducting an inquiry into mother's competency and need for a GAL under G.S. 7B-1101.1(c).
In re Z.V.A.
___ N.C. ___ (Dec. 6, 2019)
The evidence and findings support the court's conclusion of neglect based on prior neglect and likelihood of future neglect.
In re Z.V.A.
___ N.C. ___ (Dec. 6, 2019)
There was no bias warranting recusal when judge made statement at TPR that explained the permanency planning order that placed the child with a relative in New Jersey because of a belief that the child could not live with the parents.
In re I.G.C.
___ N.C. ___ (Dec. 6, 2019)
Mother's limited progress on her case plan was not enough and too late. TPR based on failure to make reasonable progress to correct the conditions that led to the children's removal (substance abuse and DV) is affirmed.
In re A.R.A.
___ N.C. ___ (Dec. 6, 2019)
Finding of mother's prioritization of relationship with father, who did not comply with case plan and was violent toward mother and children, over the children's safety was supported by evidence and supported conclusion that she failed to make reasonable progress to correct the conditions leading to the children's removal
In re A.R.A..
___ N.C. ___ (Dec. 6, 2019)
The court did not abuse its discretion when it determined TPR was in the child's best interests. The court considered all the G.S. 7B-1110(a) factors and made findings of those that were relevant.
In re S.G.
___ N.C. App. ___ (Nov. 19, 2019)
The opinion affirms abuse based on serious physical injury by nonaccidental means as shown by bruising on a 3 year old
In re S.G.
___ N.C. App. ___ (Nov. 19, 2019)
This opinion affirms a neglect adjudication of two siblings who live in the same home as a younger sibling who was abused and neglected.
In re S.G.
___ N.C. App. ___ (Nov. 19, 2019)
This case applies the holding of In re B.O.A., 831 S.E.2d 305 (2019) and overrules In re H.H., 237 N.C. App. 432 (2014) and In re W.V., 204 N.C. App. 290 (2010) when looking at court's authority to order a parent to remedy conditions that directly or indirectly causes the child's removal from the home.
In re S.G.
___ N.C. App. ___ (Nov. 19, 2019)
This opinion discussed G.S. 7B-905.1 and its application to a parent, guardian, or custodian. It also finds there is no abuse of discretion in an order of 1 visit/month but there was abuse of discretion when the length of visit was not ordered.
In re N.D.A.
___ N.C. ___ (Nov. 1, 2019)
This opinion discusses TPR based on abandonment under G.S. 7B-1111(a)(1) and (7) and vacates and remands due to insufficient findings. Findings are discussed as well as the court's authority to question witnesses during trial.
In re F.S.
___ N.C. App. ___ (Oct. 15, 2019) (originally unpublished, now published)
Evidence of mother's current compliance with substance abuse treatment showed an ability to parent at the time of the adjudicatory hearing and therefore there was no dependency.
In re E.B.
___ N.C. App. ___ (Oct. 15, 2019)
Court lacked subject matter jurisdiction to enter permanency planning orders after mother executed a relinquishment since no petition was filed. The TPR findings for abandonment were supported by clear, cogent, and convincing evidence. There is a dissent.
In re J.C.M.J.C.
___ N.C. App. ___ (Oct. 15 2019)
This opinion reverses a neglect adjudication based on insufficient findings. It discusses judicial notice of a prior nonsecure custody order as well as a lack of findings regarding risk of harm related to marijuana use by parents and chronic absenteeism from school.
In re J.C.M.J.C.
___ N.C. App. ___ (Oct. 15, 2019)
Appeal dismissed when record did not include neglect petitions showing the trial court had subject matter jurisdiction.
In re J.T.S.
___ N.C. App. ___ (Oct. 15, 2019)
Under G.S. 7B-906.1(n)(1), the period of at least one year means an uninterrupted period of at least 12 months in the same placement.
In re J.T.S.
___ N.C. App. ___ (Oct. 15, 2019)
Court must address costs of supervised visitation. This opinion also discusses preservation of issue for review.
In re S.B.
___ N.C. App. ___ (Oct. 15, 2019) (originally unpublished, now published)
This opinion affirms a permanency planning order that achieves a permanent plan of guardianship, eliminates a secondary plan, and discusses findings and evidentiary issues to support the order.
In re F.S.
___ N.C. App. ___ (Oct. 15, 2019) (originally unpublished, now published)
The court order did not include the findings required by Rule of Evidence 803(24) for admission of the child's residual hearsay statements. Collateral estoppel does not preclude an adjudication based on new events that occurred after a previous adjudication that was reversed on appeal.
In re F.S.
___ N.C. App. ___ (Oct. 15, 2019) (originally unpublished, now published)
There were no findings about harm or substantial risk of harm to the juvenile based on a lack of proper care, supervision, or discipline by a parent with a substance abuse problem when that parent was complaint with treatment at the time of the adjudicatory hearing.
In re S.P.
___ N.C. App. ___ (Oct. 1, 2019)
Competent evidence requires oral testimony at a permanency planning hearing.
McMillan v. McMillan
___ N.C. App. ___ (Oct. 1, 2019)
A juvenile court neglect action may be terminated even when G.S. 7B-911 procedures are not followed. The juvenile court order expressly terminated its jurisdiction. G.S. 7B-201.
In re C.B.C.
___ N.C. ___ (Sept. 27, 2019)
The findings support the conclusion of abandonment during the relevant 6-month time period. Past conduct may be considered to evaluate intent and credibility. Incarceration and defeating a prior TPR do not preclude the court from granting a TPR based on evidence that supports the findings to support a conclusion of abandonment.
In re A.U.D.
___ N.C. ___ (Sept. 27, 2019)
This opinion discusses the dispositional phase of TPR and the child's best interests based on the purposes of the Juvenile Code and factors identified in G.S. 7B-1110(a). The TPR was denied and the supreme court affirmed that decision. There is a dissent.
In re C.M.C.
___ N.C. ___ (Sept. 27, 2019)
A TPR order that was signed by a judge who did not preside over the TPR proceeding was a nullity and allowed for the district court to grant a Rule 60 motion and enter a new order despite mother having filed an appeal.
In re E.H.P.
___ N.C. ___ (Aug. 16, 2019)
Father's conduct was sufficient to support a TPR based on willful abandonment. Father could have filed a motion to modify the temporary custody order that prohibited contact between him and the children, yet he did not take any such action. The court's determination that TPR was in the children's best interests was not an abuse of discretion.
In re T.N.H.
___ N.C. ___ (Aug. 16, 2019)
This opinion affirms a TPR based on a prior TPR and lack of ability or willingness to establish a safe home. It discusses findings of fact including reliance on prior orders.
In re L.E.M.
___ N.C. ___ (Aug. 16, 2019)
Appellate “Rule 3.1 mandates an independent review on appeal of the issues contained in a no-merit brief….” Sl. Op. at 1. In re L.V. is overruled.
In re B.O.A.
___ N.C. ___ (Aug. 16, 2019)
This opinion gives an expansive interpretation of the language in G.S. 7B-1111(a)(2) regarding conditions that led to the juvenile's removal. It also discusses the court's authority in a case plan to address both the direct and indirect causes of the child's removal rather than limit the condition to what was alleged in the petition.
In re Z.L.W.
___ N.C. ___ (Aug. 16, 2019)
The court did not abuse its discretion when giving more weight to the best interests factors at G.S. 7B-1110(a) than the children's bond with their father.
In re C.M.B.
___ N.C. App. ___ (Aug. 6, 2019)
This opinion discusses the application of the UCCJEA to a 7B case when the court has retained jurisdiction.
In re C.N.
___ N.C. App. ___ (Aug. 6, 2019)
A TPR based on neglect and failure to make reasonable progress is reversed. The facts do not support the conclusion. Compliance with the case plan, including housing, is discussed.
In re K.L.J.
___ N.C. App. ___ (July 16, 2019)
The Tribal Court did not have exclusive jurisdiction over the adoption proceeding of two Indian children. The children were not wards of the tribal court. The NC court did not err in failing to provide full faith and credit to a tribal court order that was not authenticated and did not comply with the UEFJA and where the hearing did not provide due process to the children and adoption petitioners.
In re D.A.Y.
___ N.C. App. ___ (June 18, 2019)
This opinion discusses modification jurisdiction under the UCCJEA when there was an initial custody determination in another state and whether NC had modification jurisdiction to proceed with a TPR. Although both parents and the child moved from the original state, mother (non-custodial parent) returned to that state and was presently residing there when the NC TPR action commenced. Without a finding by the out-of-state court that it no longer had continuing exclusive jurisdiction, NC lacked subject matter jurisdiction under the UCCJEA.
In re T.H.
___ N.C. App. ___ (June 18, 2019)
This opinion discusses findings under G.S. 7B-1110(a)(3) and (6) for a TPR disposition. Findings under G.S. 7B-906.2(b) do not apply to TPR proceedings.
In re T.H.
___ N.C. App. ___ (June 18, 2019)
There is not statutory or constitutional right to an Anders type appellate review in a TPR.
In re C.D.H.
___ N.C. App. ___, 829 S.E.2d 690 (2019)
The record is insufficient to determine whether mother was denied effective assistance of counsel. The record was silent as to why mother was not present, what her relationship with her attorney was, whether she waived her right. The appropriate remedy is remand to the trial court for that determination.
In re A.R.C.
___ N.C. App. ___, 830 S.E.2d 1 (2019)
The record is insufficient to determine whether mother was denied effective assistance of counsel when mother was not present at hearing and attorney did not advocate at hearing but did file motion to dismiss and an answer. No reasons are provided and it is unclear what state mother was in at the time of the TPR hearing or what direction she may have given her attorney or GAL. The appropriate remedy is remand for the trial court to determine whether the representation was deficient.
In re M.T.-L.Y.
___ N.C. App. ___, 829 S.E.2d 496 (2019)
Mother was not denied effective assistance of counsel when the trial court denied a motion to continue. Mother had adequate time to prepare with her attorney, using alternative means (text, email, phone) as opposed to in-person communication.
In re M.T.-L.Y.
___ N.C. App. ___, 829 S.E.2d 496 (2019)
This opinion discusses the precedent set by In re H.L. and In re C.P. that allows the trial court at the first permanency planning hearing (PPH) to cease reunification efforts but requires that reunification be a primary or secondary permanent plan. In this case, the evidence and facts support the cessation of reunification efforts, but the trial court erred in not including reunification as one of the permanent plans at the first PPH.
In re B.C.T.
___ N.C. App. ___, 828 S.E.2d 50 (2019)
Insufficient record on appeal to address mother's argument that a G.S. 7B-910 review of foster care placement was required in case where mother placed child with family friend before any DSS involvement and then via a family services agreement allowed younger child to also be placed in the family friend's home.
In re B.C.T.
___ N.C. App. ___, 828 S.E.2d 50 (2019)
The findings are not supported by competent evidence. The findings do not support the conclusion of law that mother's home is not appropriate.
In re B.C.T.
___ N.C. App. ___, 828 S.E.2d 50 (2019)
DSS cannot take a different position on appeal from what it argued at trial.
In re Willie Reggie Harris
___ N.C. App. ___, 828 S.E.2d 559 (2019)
DSS's failure to send notice to petitioner for more than three years (exceeding the RIL statutory time period and the statute of limitations for misdemeanors) deprived petitioner of his constitutional due process and liberty interests as the delay was prejudicial.
In re H.N.D.
___ N.C. App. ___, 827 S.E.2d 329 (2019)
There was clear and convincing evidence to support the findings and resulting conclusion of law that mother was incapable of providing proper care and supervision such that the children were dependent and mother's incapability was reasonably probable for the foreseeable future. Mother continued relationship with father despite a long and continuing history of domestic violence.The proper TPR made the appeal of a permanency planning order moot.
In re H.N.D.
___ N.C. App. ___, 827 S.E.2d 329 (2019)
The appeal of the permanency planning order "ceasing reunification efforts" was rendered moot by the proper TPR, which relied on evidence about current conditions and not findings of conclusions in the PPO.
Adams v. Langdon v. Malone
___ N.C. App. ___, 826 S.E.2d 236 (2019)
Because grandmother intervened in an ongoing custody dispute between the parents and was awarded visitation rights in a court order in that custody action, her visitation rights were not extinguished when later, mother's rights were terminated in a separate action. Grandmother could seek to enforce those rights through a contempt proceeding brought against father.
Henry v. Morgan
___ N.C. App. ___, 826 S.E.2d 475 (2019)
Plaintiff's failure to exercise due diligence to locate and serve Defendant resulted in improper service by publication. Dismissal is appropriate.
In re J.L.
___ N.C. App. ___, 826 S.E.2d 258 (2019)
Mother who sought to have child placed in home with his half siblings was a nonprevailing party with standing to appeal a permanency planning order that awarded guardianship to foster parents (placement mother objected to).
In re J.L.
___ N.C. App. ___, 826 S.E.2d 258 (2019)
Foster parents were not parties and did not participate as parties even though they testified as the child's current placement provider through direct examination by their attorney. Foster parent's attorney also questioned on direct and redirect an expert called by the GAL attorney advocate who requested foster parent attorney conduct the examination of the expert witness.
In re J.L.
___ N.C. App. ___, 826 S.E.2d 258 (2019)
At a permanency planning hearing (PPH), the court may consider any evidence it finds to be relevant, reliable, and necessary to determine the child’s needs and most appropriate disposition. G.S. 7B-906.1(c). Expert witness provided such evidence through her testimony even though she did not personally evaluate the child.
In re J.L.
___ N.C. App. ___, 826 S.E.2d 258 (2019)
Court must indicate the standard of clear and convincing evidence when determining a parent is unfit or has acted inconsistently with her constitutionally protected rights.
In re J.L.
___ N.C. App. ___, 826 S.E.2d 258 (2019)
Court must inform parties of their right to seek a review of the visitation order when it retains jurisdiction. G.S. 7B-905.1(d). This opinion also discusses findings and conclusions of law related to visitation.
In re J.A.M.
___ N.C. ___, 822 S.E.2d 693 (2019)

There was competent evidence to support the findings of fact and conclusion of law that the newborn was a neglected juvenile. This case has an extensive appellate procedural history based on the proper standard of review to be applied (the court of appeals may not reweigh the underlying evidence).

In re I.R.L.
___ N.C. App. ___, 823 S.E.2d 902 (2019)

Abandonment under G.S. 7B-1111(a)(7) requires a finding of wilfullness. This finding is especially important when there is a DVPO prohibiting contact between the mother (petitioner) and father (respondent) of a toddler.

In re I.R.L.
___ N.C. App. ___, 823 S.E.2d 902 (2019)

This opinion reverses a TPR on the ground of G.S. 7B-1111(a)(4) because of (1) insufficient notice pleading to respondent father and (2) insufficient findings to support the conclusion the ground existed.

In re C.K.C.
___ N.C. App. ___, 822 S.E.2d 741 (2018)

One month before the TPR petition was filed, respondent father sought sole custody of his children when he filed a motion to modify a Chapter 50 custody order. This action by respondent father precludes the trial court from concluding the father abandoned the children under G.S. 7B-1111(a)(1) or (7). The Chapter 50 consent order, as construed by the trial court in the TPR, is void as against public policy. 

State v. Godfrey
___ N.C. App. ___, 822 S.E.2d 894 (2018)

This opinion discusses Rules of Evidence 404(b) and 403 in a trial for a first-degree sex offense with a child. It holds the admission of the victim's testimony regarding two prior acts by the defendant that were strikingly similar to the act for which he was charged - digital penetration of the same victim while she was in defendant's care - was not an error.

In re Y.I.
___ N.C. App. ___, 822 S.E.2d 501 (2018)

Although the order sets for the minimim length, frequency, and whether visitation is supervised as required by G.S. 7B-905.1, it does not address the cost of visitation and whether respondent mother has an ability to pay (if she is to bear the cost).

In re L.S.
___ N.C. App. ___, 822 S.E.2d 506 (2018)

The TPR petition and attached DSS social worker affidavit was insufficient to put respondent on notice that G.S. 7B-1111(a)(2) was a ground to TPR.

In re L.S.
___ N.C. App. ___, 822 S.E.2d 506 (2018)

There was no evidence to support the findings that the respondent father failed to take each of the required actions of G.S. 7B-1111(a)(5) (failure to legitimate).

In re D.A.
___ N.C. App. ___, 822 S.E.2d 664 (2018)

Declining to address respondent's argument on appeal, the court of appeals reversed and remanded because the trial court failed to comply with the statutory mandate of G.S. 7B-906.2 that requires the trial court adopt one or more concurrent permanent plans. The use of the term "shall" is a mandate and failure to comply with that mandate is reversible error.

In re Y.I.
___ N.C. App. ___, 822 S.E.2d 501 (2018)

There was no abuse of discretion in ordering custody to the father as the child's permanent plan, based on the child's best interests.

In re Y.I.
___ N.C. App. ___, 822 S.E.2d 501 (2018)

When the trial court is considering whether to terminate jurisdiction the juvenile proceeding and order custody under G.S. Chapter 50, G.S. 7B-911 does not expressly require the court make a finding as to whether jurisdiction should be terminated and the matter transferred. Here, the court chose not to terminate jurisdiction when ordering custody to the respondent father.

In re Duncan, Jr.
___ N.C. App. ___, 822 S.E.2d 467 (2018)

There is no right to jury trial in a judicial review of the RIL decision. A denial of a Rule 12(b)(1) and 12(b)(6) motion to dismiss is an interlocutory order that is not subject to immediate appeal.

In re I.B.
___ N.C. App. ___, 822 S.E.2d 472 (2018)

This case distinguishes the requirements of an Anders review in criminal cases and NC Appellate Rule 3.1(d), which applies to juvenile cases. App. Rule 3.1(d) does not require the appellate court conduct an independent review of the record; however, the court of appeals has discretion to conduct the review when appropriate.

Rouse v. Forsyth County DSS
___ N.C. App. ___, 822 S.E.2d 100 (2018)

This is an employment case involving the discharge of a Senior Social Worker in the Family and Children’s Division After Hours Unit at Forsyth County DSS. One of the issues addressed in this opinion discusses mandated reporting under G.S. 7B-301 and "cause to suspect" abuse, neglect, or dependency.

In re D.A.
___ N.C. App. ___, 820 S.E.2d 873 (2018)

This opinion discusses App. Rule 3.1(d). The court of appeals may invoke App. Rule 2 to suspend the mandatory requirements under App. Rule 3.1(d) to serve a client with a no-merit brief, record, transcript, and notice of the right to file a pro se brief. The decision to invoke App. Rule 2 is made on a case-by-case basis, and here it applied when appellate counsel made exhaustive efforts to serve the client.

In re L.E.M.
___ N.C. App. ___, 820 S.E.2d 577 (2018), vacated by ___ N.C. ___ (Aug. 16, 2019)

This opinion discusses the procedure regarding Appellate Rule 3.1(d) (no merit brief and Anders-type review) and the controlling authority of prior opinions. Respondent father's failure to file a pro se brief resulted in dismissal of the appeal. There is a concurrence and a dissent.

In re I.P.
___ N.C. App. ___, 820 S.E.2d 586 (2018)

Appeal of  TPR under App. Rule 3.1(d) is dismissed as respondent father's pro se brief was untimely and failed to preserve or argue issues for appellate review. There is a concurrence and dissent.

In re J.M.K.
___ N.C. App. ___, 820 S.E.2d 106 (2018)

The petition was insufficient to put respondent father on notice of the ground of abandonment.

In re J.M.K.
___ N.C. App. ___, 820 S.E.2d 106 (2018)

A TPR based on failure to pay child support requires the petitioner to prove there was a child support order. There was no evidence of any child support order requiring reversal of the TPR.

In re J.M.K.
___ N.C. App. ___, 820 S.E.2d 106 (2018)

The court only made findings addressing 3 of the 5 subsections to G.S. 7B-1111(a)(5) regarding actions taken by a father to a child born out of wedlock. The failure to address all 5 subsections requires reversal of the TPR.

In re W.H.
___ N.C. App. ___, 819 S.E.2d 617 (2018) (originally unpublished but subsequently published)

The trial court did not abuse its discretion when allowing the children's out-of-court statements disclosing their father's sexual abuse to (1) DSS social workers, (2) forensic evaluation interviewers, and (3) law enforcement as a residual hearsay exception. This opinion discusses the factors when applying Rule 803(24).

In re W.H.
___ N.C. App. ___, 819 S.E.2d 617 (2018) (Originally unpublished but subsequently published)

The trial court did not abuse its discretion when determining visitation with the father and all 4 children (2 were adjudicated abused and all 4 were adjudicated neglected) was against the children's best interests, health, and safety.

In re I.K.
___ N.C. App. ___, 818 S.E.2d 359 (2018)

The trial court failed to make sufficiently specific findings to allow for appellate review of a permanency planning order that awarded guardianship to the grandmother and ceased reunification efforts with respondents. 

In re I.K.
___ N.C. App. ___, 818 S.E.2d 359 (2018)

The permanency planning order awarding guardianship did not include findings about the parents' paramount constitutional rights, and respondents' did not waive those findings. Vacated and remanded for additional findings.  

In re A.P.
___ N.C. App. ___, 818 S.E.2d 396 (2018)

Respondent mother's American Indian heritage related to two federally recognized Indian tribes was sufficient to give the court reason to know the child is an Indian child requiring notice be sent to the Indian tribes re: the child's status as an Indian child under 25 U.S.C. 1903(4).

In re K.G.
___ N.C. App. ___, 817 S.E.2d 790 (2018)

In a dependency petition, the allegations must address the respondents’ inability to provide for the child’s care or supervision and lacked an appropriate alternative child care arrangement. Here, the allegations in the petition if taken as true do not address either prong for a dependency adjudication and instead “at best establish that [the juvenile] is a delinquent or undisciplined juvenile..." The child’s willful acts (e.g., his behavior and refusal to go home) do not determine the  parent’s ability to care for the juvenile. The 12(b)(6) should have been granted.

In re B.O.A.
___ N.C. App. ___, 818 S.E.2d 331 (2018), reversed ___ N.C. ___ (Aug. 16, 2019)

The findings the respondent failed to make reasonable progress to correct the conditions that led to the child's removal or adjudication are unsupported by the evidence. This case discusses implementation of skills learned from domestic violence classes and the requirement for the progress (or lack thereof) to be related to the reasons the child was removed. In this case, those reasons were based on domestic violence and a bruise and not substance abuse, mental health issues, or parenting skills.

In re C.C.
___ N.C. App. ___, 817 S.E.2d 894 (2018)

When a child has been voluntarily removed from the parent's home before a neglect petition is filed, the court must consider evidence of changed conditions in light of the evidence of prior neglect and the probability of repetition of neglect. The court looks to factors related to the conditions and fitness of the parent at the time of the adjudication hearing. The parents had not remedied the conditions resulting in the kinship placement. Although there was no ultimate finding of a substantial risk of harm to the child due to the parent's lack of proper care or supervision, it was not reversible error.

In re D.S.
___ N.C. App. ___, 817 S.E.2d 901 (2018)

When placing a child in out-of-home care, the trial court is required to consider placement with a willing and able relative who can provide a safe home and must place with that relative unless there is finding that such placement would be contrary to the child's best interests. Failure to make such findings and conclusions will result in a remand. 

In re D.S.
___ N.C. App. ___, 817 S.E.2d 901 (2018)

Respondent father has standing to appeal a permanency planning order that ordered custody to a non-relative without considering a relative placement. This case is distinguished from In re C.A.D., 786 S.E.2d 745 (2016).

In re D.S.
___ N.C. App. ___, 817 S.E.2d 901 (2018)

A vacated order becomes void and has no effect. Upon remand, a new order may be appealed on any issue.

In re D.S.
___ N.C. App. ___, 817 S.E.2d 901 (2018)

The appeal is not moot by a subsequent order. The question as to whether a relative should have been considered for placement before an order awarded guardianship to a non-relative has never been addressed by the trial court.

In re L.V.
___ N.C. App. ___, 814 S.E.2d 928 (2018); Overruled by In re L.E.M, ___ N.C. ___ (Aug. 16, 2019)

When respondent mother's attorney complied with N.C. App. Rule 3.1(d) and respondent did not file a pro se brief, there were no issues argued or preserved for appeal.

In re M.N.
___ N.C. App. ___, 816 S.E.2d 925 (2018)

When adjudicating neglect, the trial court must make sufficient findings, supported by competent evidence, of harm or substantial risk of harm to the juvenile. Without the evidence or findings, the adjudication of neglect is reversed.

In re M.N.
___ N.C. App. ___, 816 S.E.2d 925 (2018)

G.S. 7B-1002 specifies those parties that have a right to appeal and includes “a guardian appointed under G.S. 7B-600 or Chapter 35A of the General Statutes, or a custodian as defined in G.S. 7B-101 who is a nonprevailing party.” A dispositional order in a prior action is not subject to collateral attack in a subsequent action when the basis to void the order is non-jurisdictional. The appellants in this case, who had been awarded guardianship in a prior proceeding and before that legal and physical custody, had standing to appeal under G.S. 7B-1002.

In re J.D.M.-J.
___ N.C. App. ___, 817 S.E.2d 755 (2018)

Evidence was insufficient to support the court's findings verifying the custodians had adequate resources to appropriately care for the children and understood the legal significance of the placement as required by G.S. 7B-906.1(j).

In re J.D.M.-J.
___ N.C. App. ___, 817 S.E.2d 755 (2018)

Visitation order specifying weekly visits for 2 hours minimum if mother moves to the state where child is placed does not comply with G.S. 7B-905.1(c).

In re R.L.G.
___ N.C. App. ___, 816 S.E.2d 914 (2018)

Mother's admission was a stipulation and not a consent order. The findings from the admission about the child's poor school attendance and performance and missed doctor's visits do not support the conclusion of neglect. The incorporation by reference of the pre-adjudication order does not support the neglect adjudication. 

In re R.L.G.
___ N.C. App. ___, 816 S.E.2d 914 (2018)

The doctrine of invited error does not apply in this appeal of an adjudication of neglect. The respondent mother stipulated to facts but not to an adjudication of neglect or the removal of her child from her care.

In re J.D.M.-J.
___ N.C. App. ___, 817 S.E.2d 755 (2018)

The trial court must make findings required by G.S. 7B-911(c) before terminating jurisdiction in the juvenile court proceeding.

In re J.D.M.-J.
___ N.C. App. ___, 817 S.E.2d 755 (2018)

The ICPC applies to out-of-state placements with a relative. 

In re A.J.C.
___ N.C. App. ___, 817 S.E.2d 475 (2018)

The court lacked personal jurisdiction over respondent father. The affidavit requirement of Rule 4(j1) for service by publication was not satisfied, and the father did not make a general appearance waiving any defect in service.  

In re J.A.M.
___ N.C. App. ___, 816 S.E.2d 901 (2018), affirmed ___ N.C. ___, 822 S.E.2d 693 (Feb. 1, 2019)

In a neglect adjudication, a trial court may determine substantial risk of future abuse or neglect based on the historical facts of the case. The trial court determines how much weight to give the evidence. Here, the cumulative weight of the trial court's findings support the conclusion of neglect. The court of appeals may not reweigh the evidence.

In re A.P.
___ N.C. ___, 812 S.E.2d 840 (2018)

Judicial interpretation must consider the entire statutory text, read holistically, with consideration of the logical relation of its many parts rather than by a rigid interpretation of isolated provisions in the Juvenile Code. The parties statute, G.S. 7B-401.1(a), is not limited by the definition of director at G.S. 7B-101(10). "A director" has standing to file an abuse, neglect, or dependency petition, rather than a specific director based upon where the child resides or is found at the time the petition is filed.

In re Adoption of C.H.M.
___ N.C. ___, 812 S.E.2d 804 (2018)

Respondent father has the burden of proving he complied with all the requirements of G.S. 48-3-601(2)(b)(4)(II) for his consent to an adoption to be required. Here, he failed to show by a verifiable payment record that he made consistent and reasonable payments for the mother and/or child during the relevant time period, which is the period before the petition for adoption is filed.

State v. Blankenship
___ N.C. App. ___, 814 S.E.2d 901 (2018)

This opinion discusses a child victim's hearsay statements under present sense impression, excited utterance, statement for the purpose of medical diagnosis or treatment, and the residual exception under Rules 803(1), (2), (4), and 804(b)(5). The statements were admissible under the residual exception.

State v. Jacobs
370 N.C. 661 (2018)

Defendant’s offer of proof fell within Rule of Evidence 412(b)(2), one of four exceptions in the Rape Shield Statute - “evidence of specific instances of sexual behavior offered for the purpose of showing that the act or acts charged were not committed by the defendant." Results of the victim having STDs and the defendant not having STDs and a report by a proposed medical expert “affirmatively permit an inference that defendant did not commit the charged crime."

In re J.R.S.
___ N.C. App. ___, 813 S.E.2d 283 (2018)

Before removing a custodian, guardian, or caretaker from an A/N/D action, the trial court must make the two findings required by G.S. 7B-401.1(g).

In re J.R.S.
___ N.C. App. ___, 813 S.E.2d 283 (2018)

“The trial court ‘should not broadly incorporate written reports from outside sources as its findings of fact’ [and] … delegate its fact-finding duty” (quoting In re J.S., 165 N.C. App. 509, 511 (2004)).

In re A.A.S.
___ N.C. App. ___, 812 S.E.2d 875 (2018)

Pursuant to Appellate Rule 3.1(d), respondent father’s counsel filed a no-merit brief and requests the appellate court review the record for possible error by the trial court. No error occurred. The TPR order contained sufficient findings, supported by clear, cogent, and convincing evidence, to conclude the neglect ground and relevant findings to determine the TPR was in the children's best interests.

In re A.A.S.
___ N.C. App. ___, 812 S.E.2d 875 (2018)

A G.S. 7B-906.2 permanency planning order that includes adoption and reunification as the concurrent permanent plans is not an appealable order under G.S. 7B-1001(a)(5), even when a TPR has been commenced by DSS. Reunification has not been implicitly or explicitly eliminated as a permanent plan.

In re A.A.S.
___ N.C. App. ___, 812 S.E.2d 875 (2018)

The findings support termination of respondent's parental rights under the grounds of willfully failing to correct the conditions that led to the child's removal regarding two children and neglect regarding a third child. Findings about whether DSS made reasonable efforts toward reunification are required at permanency planning hearings and not a TPR, but even so, DSS provided reasonable efforts toward reunification (such efforts need not be exhaustive).

In re Z.D.
___ N.C. App. ___, 812 S.E.2d 668 (2018)

The evidentiary findings of fact are insufficient to support the ultimate finding required for each ground alleged and the conclusion that any of the alleged grounds under G.S. 7B-1111(a)(1), (2), and (6) existed. The evidentiary findings lacked specificity. The evidence presented focused on events occurring more than 6 months before the TPR hearing and lacked temporal proximity to the hearing to support a TPR on the grounds alleged.

State v. Ditenhafer
___ N.C. App. ___, 812 S.E.2d 896 (2018)

There was sufficient evidence of defendant’s actions pressuring her daughter to recant the daughter’s allegation of repeated sexual abuse by her adoptive father/defendant’s husband with the willful intent to hinder the investigation. There was insufficient evidence that defendant denied DSS or law enforcement access to her daughter to support an obstruction of justice charge on that basis. Defendant's failure to report child abuse without an allegation of an affirmative act does not support a conviction of accessory after the fact.

In re C.P.
___ N.C. App. ___, 812 S.E.2d 188 (2018)

An adjudication of dependency under G.S. 7B-101(9) requires the trial court to address both prongs of the definition regarding (1) the parent’s ability to provide proper care or supervision and (2) the availability to the parent of alternative child care arrangements.

In re C.P.
___ N.C. App. ___, 812 S.E.2d 188 (2018)

The trial court did not err in holding the adjudication, initial dispositional, and permanency planning hearings on the same day as it is not forbidden by the Juvenile Code. The court of appeals distinguished reunification as a permanent plan from reunification efforts. At the initial permanency planning hearing, reunification must be a concurrent plan absent certain findings but reunification efforts may be ceased at the initial permanency planning hearing.

In re C.P.
___ N.C. App. ___, 812 S.E.2d 188 (2018)

Permanent plan of guardianship did not include finding under G.S. 7B-906.1(e)(1). Respondent mother waived her right to findings about her acting inconsistently with her parental rights.

In re S.J.T.H.
___ N.C. App. ___, 811 S.E.2d 723 (2018)

There  must be clear, cogent, and convincing evidence to demonstrate a parent is unfit or has acted inconsistently with his parental rights to support a disposition that does not grant a parent custody.

In re D.A.
___ N.C. App. ___, 811 S.E.2d 729 (2018)

Before ordering custody to a non-parent, there must be clear and convincing evidence and a finding that a parent is unfit or has acted inconsistently with his or constitutionally protected status as a parent. This finding applies to a permanent custody order, even when custody is transferred from a non-parent (in this case DSS) to a different non-parent (in this case the foster parents).

In re D.A.
___ N.C. App. ___, 811 S.E.2d 729 (2018)

The court may cease reunification efforts after making findings under G.S. 7B-906.2(b) and (d). Here, the order did not include the required findings.

In re K.C.
___ N.C. App. ___, 812 S.E.2d 873 (2018)

"The law of the case doctrine does not apply when the evidence presented at a subsequent [TPR] proceeding is different from that presented on a former appeal,” which in this case is the six months next preceding the filing of the second (2016) petition alleging abandonment under G.S. 7B-1111(a)(7).

In re J.A.K.
___ N.C. App. ___, 812 S.E.2d 716 (2018)

G.S. 7B-1001(a) allows for appeal of a TPR order and any prior order eliminating reunification as a permanent plan under G.S. 7B-906.2(b) if all of the criteria under G.S. 7B-1001(a)(5)(a) apply. Written notice preserving the right to appeal the G.S. 7B-906.2(b) order is not required (as it was under the former G.S. 7B-507(c)).

In re J.A.K.
___ N.C. App. ___, 812 S.E.2d 716 (2018)

Without a transcript or narrative in the appellate record, findings of fact are deemed conclusive on appeal, and the review of an order eliminating reunification is limited to whether the findings support the decision to cease reunification. The ultimate finding under G.S. 7B-906.2(b) that reunification efforts clearly would be unsuccessful or inconsistent with the juvenile’s health and safety were supported by findings. 

In re J.A.K.
___ N.C. App. ___, 812 S.E.2d 716 (2018)

The relevant 12 month period under G.S. 7B-1111(a)(2) starts when the trial court enters a court order requiring that the child be removed from the home, which in this case was the nonsecure custody order, and ends when the TPR petition or motion is filed. This 12-month time period applies even when a respondent in the TPR was the “non-removal parent and did not appear in the neglect action until months after the nonsecure custody order was issued. The findings support the TPR as father only made limited progress, which was not reasonable progress.

In re D.E.M.
___ N.C. App. ___, 802 S.E.2d 766 (2017), aff'd per curiam, 370 N.C. 463 (2018)

Although the respondent had limited options to show her love, guidance, and affection for her child during an appeal of a previously granted TPR, she failed to attempt to make any efforts to contact or support her child or seek a stay of the TPR order. Those actions, coupled with her prior conduct, support the termination of parental rights on the ground of abandonment.

In re J.A.M.
370 N.C. 464 (2018)

In an appeal of an abuse, neglect, or dependency adjudication, the standard of review requires the appellate court to “deem conclusive” a trial court’s findings of fact that are supported by clear and convincing competent evidence even when some evidence supports a contrary finding.

In re D.E.M.
___ N.C. App. ___, 802 S.E.2d 766 (2017), aff'd per curiam, 370 N.C. 463 (2018)

A placement made by a G.S. Chapter 50 civil custody order does not negate the ability of the custodian to adopt the child, despite the placement not being made pursuant to G.S. Chapter 48. The court may waive the placement requirement for cause. In a TPR, the court may consider the likelihood of the child's adoption in the dispositional phase when the placement is not made pursuant to G.S. Chapter 48.

In re S.G.V.S.
___ N.C. App. ___, 811 S.E.2d 718 (2018)

Court's denials of respondent mother's motion to continue and motion to re-open evidence in a TPR action when respondent was unable to appear at the TPR hearing due to a previously scheduled criminal matter in a different court in a different county resulted in an unreasonable and substantial miscarriage of justice, implicating mother's due process rights.

In re M.J.S.M.
___ N.C. App. ___, 810 S.E.2d 370 (2018)

Findings, based on evidence, that respondent mother's progress on her case plan were limited were sufficient to support a determination of likelihood of future neglect. Where there was an underlying neglect adjudication with a determination of likelihood of reptition of neglect, the TPR was affirmed.

In re M.J.S.M.
___ N.C. App. ___, 810 S.E.2d 370 (2018)

In a review by the court of appeals upon request of respondent father's attorney when filing a no-merit brief pursuant to Appellate Rule 3.1(d), there was no error. The findings and conclusions in the TPR order were sufficient.

In re Ivey
___ N.C. App. ___, 810 S.E.2d 740 (2018)

The 7-day time period for a revocation of a consent to adoption starts to run when the parent who signed the consent receives an original or copy of the consent he or she signed. The revocation was timely filed within 7 days after the date the parent received a copy of the consent, which was weeks after she signed the consent.

State v. Singletary
___ N.C. App. ___, 810 S.E.2d 775 (2018)

The mandate issues on the day the appellete court transmits the mandate to the lower court, not the day the lower court actually receives the mandate.

In re D.E.M.
___ N.C. App. ___, 810 S.E.2d 375 (2018)

Private TPR order based on abandonment (G.S. 7B-1111(a)(7)) did not include sufficient findings of fact regarding the determinative six-month time period and respondent's wilfulness during his incarceration.

In re B.P.
___ N.C. App. ___, 809 S.E.2d 914 (2018)

The findings of fact were unsupported by the evidence, and the findings did not support the conclusion of neglect. There was no evidence or finding of harm or risk of harm to the child. This case discusses the mother's placement of the child in an appropriate alternative care arrangement without the assistance of DSS.

In re B.P.
___ N.C. App. ___, 809 S.E.2d 914 (2018)

Findings related to alternative placement of child made by mother before petition filed by DSS and without DSS assistance do not support adjudication of dependency.

Brown v. Swarn
___ N.C. App. ___, 810 S.E.2d 237 (2018)

When there is no certificate of service of an order, the burden is on appellee to show appellant received actual notice of the order more than 30 days before filing notice of appeal to warrant dismissal of appeal as untimely.

In re G.T.
791 S.E.2d 274 (2016), aff'd per curiam, 370 N.C. 387 (2017)

G.S. 7B-901(c)(1) requires a previous order finding facts supporting a determination that aggravating circumstances exist to order reasonable efforts for reunification are not required.

In re J.S.K.
___ N.C. App. ___, 807 S.E.2d 188 (2017)

Allegations in a TPR motion must consist of more than bare recitations of the statutory grounds to TPR. The TPR motion was insufficient to put respondent mother on notice as to what acts, omissions, or conditions were at issue. Reversing trial court's denial of a motion to dismiss under Rule 12(b)(6).

McKinney v. Duncan
___ N.C. App. ___, 808 S.E.2d 509 (2017)

Orders that do not bear a file stamp or other indication that they were ever filed with the clerk of court have not been entered under Rule 58. Here, the orders were signed but not file stamped. Because they were not entered, the court of appeals has no jurisdiction to review them.

In re H.L.
___ N.C. App. ___, 807 S.E.2d 685 (2017)

When a child has been voluntarily removed from the home before a petition is filed, the court considers “the conditions and fitness of the parent to care [for the child] at the time of the adjudication.” Although portions of some of the court’s findings were not supported by competent evidence and were disregarded on appellate review, the findings that were supported by the evidence support the trial court’s conclusion that the juvenile was neglected based on drug use and failure to remedy conditions leading to safety resource placement.

In re H.L.
___ N.C. App. ___, 807 S.E.2d 685 (2017)

The court must make findings addressing both prongs of the dependency definition at G.S. 7B-101(9): the parent’s ability to provide proper care or supervision and the availability of an alternative child care arrangement. 

In re H.L.
___ N.C. App. ___, 807 S.E.2d 685 (2017)

A guardian may be appointed at disposition, including initial disposition. Guardianship may be granted without the court making a written finding of a G.S. 7B-901(c) factor regarding reunification efforts because the requirements of G.S. 7B-901(c) only apply when a child is placed in the custody of a county DSS.

In re H.L.
___ N.C. App. ___, 807 S.E.2d 685 (2017)

The court's G.S. 7B-906.2(b) finding that reunification efforts clearly would be unsuccessful or inconsistent with the juvenile’s health or safety may be made at the first permanency planning hearing. The court may consider the respondent’s failure to comply with a case plan that he voluntarily entered into before the petition was filed, even though there was no court order for him to participate in that plan, when considering whether reunification efforts would be (un)successful.

In re H.L.
___ N.C. App. ___, 807 S.E.2d 685 (2017)

Inconsistent findings that visitation should be ceased and visitation should be for a minimum of one hour a week supervised must be remanded to reconcile the discrepancy.

In re R.D.H., III
___ N.C. App. ___, 806 S.E.2d 706 (2017) (originally unpublished but subsequently published)

In a TPR neglect adjudication, the findings of fact must be supported by clear, cogent, and convincing evidence, they must address the likelihood of repetition of neglect based on evidence of current circumstances, neither of which occurred in this case. This case includes circumstances where a man should not know he is the father of a child born out of wedlock.

In re P.S.; In re L.T.; In re N.J.; In re R.J.
___ N.C. App. ___, 807 S.E.2d 631 (2017)

This opinion involves four consolidated appeals regarding procedural issues for the readmission of minors who are voluntarily admitted to an inpatient mental health facility. Issues include the timeliness of the statutorily required judicial review of admission; subject matter jurisdiction based on the requirement that a legally responsible person sign the admission authorization form; and accepting a minor's consent to his or her admission.   

Moriggia v. Castelo
___ N.C. App. ___, 805 S.E.2d 378 (2017)

Standing is jurisdictional. For a non-parent to pursue a G.S. Chapter 50 custody action against a parent, she must show a substantial relationship with the child and that the parent acted inconsistently with her constitutionally protected status. The standard is clear and convincing evidence. There is no bright-line test for making the determination but the court must consider the parent's intentions. Pre-birth actions by the parent should be considered with the parent's actions taken after the child's birth. 

Moriggia v. Castelo
___ N.C. App. ___, 805 S.E.2d 378 (2017)

Plaintiff was limited to one hour for the presentation of her case. She failed to request additional time or object and thus waived her right to appeal on the issue. Trial court did not abuse its discretion.

In re E.B.
___ N.C. App. ___, 805 S.E.2d 390 (2017)

Remanded for additional findings. The findings about continued domestic violence between the parents are vague and insufficient to support a TPR based on neglect and failure to make reasonable progress to correct conditions that led to the children's removal. The findings do not address the circumstances, the severity, or impact of the domestic violence on the children, or that the father was engaged in the domestic violence. 

In re M.A.W.
370 N.C. 149 (2017)

The trial court's findings were sufficient to support a TPR on the ground of neglect (reversing court of appeals decision that findings were insufficient). The father's actions after his release from incarceration supported the court's finding of likelihood of repetition of neglect.

In re N.H.
___ N.C. App. ___, 804 S.E.2d 841 (2017)

Discussing competent evidence to support the trial court's verification of a proposed guardians' adequate resources to appropriately care for the child, this opinion has a concurrence and a dissent and addresses previous published opinions on the issue. Although a close question, evidence supported the conclusion of adequate resources.

In re J.M.
___ N.C. App. ___, 804 S.E.2d 830 (2017)

Respondent mother's statements about the respondent father's conduct were admissible as exceptions to hearsay, based on an admission of a party opponent and statements made for the purposes of diagnosis and treatment.

In re J.M.
___ N.C. App. ___, 804 S.E.2d 830 (2017)

A juvenile may not be adjudicated "seriously neglected" as defined by G.S. 7B-101(19a).

In re J.M.
___ N.C. App. ___, 804 S.E.2d 830 (2017)

A combined initial disposition and permanency planning order implicates G.S. 7B-901(c), and requires findings under 7B-901(c) before the court may order the elimination of reunification efforts.

In re L.W.S.
___ N.C. App. ___, 804 S.E.2d 816 (2017)

ICWA applies when the proceeding is a "child custody proceeding" that involves an "Indian child" as both terms are defined by ICWA. Note this opinion does not apply the ICWA regulations that became effective December 12, 2016 as the TPR order was entered before that date.

In re N.X.A.
___ N.C. App. ___, 803 S.E.2d 244 (2017)

G.S. 7B-1111(a)(3) requires the court to make findings that the respondent parent has an ability to pay support greater than what (s)he paid but does not require the court to make a finding as to the specific amount of support that constitutes a reasonable portion of the child's care. In this case, the findings supported the ground.

In re N.X.A.
___ N.C. App. ___, 803 S.E.2d 244 (2017)

N.C. Civ. P. Rule 11(d) applies to verification by the State, and DSS is acting as an agent of the state when filing a petition alleging abuse, neglect, or dependency. Rule 11(d) requires the person verifying be "acquainted with the facts". The DSS attorney verification that was based upon information and belief was proper under Rule 11(d) as he was "acquainted with the facts".

In re C.M.P.
___ N.C. App. ___, 803 S.E.2d 853 (2017)

Repondent's unexplained absence at TPR hearing did not implicate a constitutional right when her attorney requested a continuance. There was no abuse of discretion or prejudice to the respondent when the trial court denied the continuance request. Respondent's attorney fully participated in the hearing.

In re C.M.P.
___ N.C. App. ___, 803 S.E.2d 853 (2017)

The findings of fact (including the unchallenged finding that is binding on appeal) support the court's conclusion that neglect exists under G.S. 7B-1111(a)(1) to terminate parental rights. There was a prior history of neglect and a probability of repetition of neglect based on domestic violence and unstable housing and employment.

In re R.S.
___ N.C. App. ___, 802 S.E.2d 169 (2017)

A trial court determines reasonable inferences to draw from the evidence. Findings, supported by competent evidence, that a pre-mobile infant who was in the sole care of respondents and who suffered serious non-accidental injuries that were not explained by the respondents support an adjudication of abuse. There was no shifting of the burden of proof from DSS to respondent. 

In re C.S.L.B.
___ N.C. App. ___, 803 S.E.2d 429 (2017) (originally unpublished but subsequently published)

A court is not required to make findings under G.S. 7B-906.2(b) when it does not eliminate reunification as a concurrent permanent plan.

In re C.S.L.B.
___ N.C. App. ___, 803 S.E.2d 429 (2017) (originally unpublished but subsequently published)

The court erred in waiving further review hearings. It did not make all five findings required by G.S. 7B-906.1(n). When reunification is a secondary plan, the respondent continues to have the right to reasonable efforts and for the court to evaluate those efforts.

In re C.S.L.B.
___ N.C. App. ___, 803 S.E.2d 429 (2017) (originally unpublished but subsequently published)

The court may not delegate its judicial function to determine visitation by allowing the guardian to unilaterally suspend or modify the visitation based on his or her concerns. 

In re A.L.L.
___ N.C. App. ___, 802 S.E.2d 598 (2017)

Without a transcript, the court of appeals presumes the trial court's findings are supported by competent evidence.

In re T.P.
___ N.C. App. ___, 803 S.E.2d 1 (2017)

When a child has been reunified with a parent, the court has waived reviews, and a new report is made resulting in an assessment by DSS that requires court action, G.S. 7B-401(b) applies. It requires that DSS file in the existing case a verified petition alleging the new allegations, and that the court conduct a new adjudicatory hearing and adjudicate the juvenile before moving to a dispositional hearing.

In re K.L.
___ N.C. App. ___, 802 S.E.2d 588 (2017)

The trial court must comply with the requirements of the various statutes that apply to permanency planning hearings regarding findings. The findings must be supported by the evidence  and must support the conclusions of law. The evidence did not support the findings, and the findings did not support the conclusion to eliminate reunification as a permanent plan based on reasonable efforts clearly being unsuccessful or inconsistent with the juvenile's health and safety and need for a permanent home within a reasonable period of time.

In re K.L.
___ N.C. App. ___, 802 S.E.2d 588 (2017)

It is reversible error to waive further review hearings when the court does not make findings of each of the G.S. 7B-906.1(n) factors.

In re K.L.
___ N.C. App. ___, 802 S.E.2d 588 (2017)

To award custody or guardianship to a non-parent, the court must address whether respondent is unfit as a parent or acted inconsistently with her parental rights, and those findings must be supported by clear and convincing evidence.

In re A.L.L.
___ N.C. App. ___, 802 S.E.2d 598 (2017)

This opinion discusses temporary emergency jurisdiction at nonsecure custody; modification jurisdiction for adjudication and disposition; and due process arguments under the UCCJEA and Juvenile Code regarding jurisdictional issues. Subject matter jurisdiction is found and the underlying order is affirmed.

In re A.L.L.
___ N.C. App. ___, 802 S.E.2d 598 (2017)

A TPR on dependency can be proved by clear and convincing evidence through an older mental health evaluation that shows the respondent has conditions that are not easily amendable to change and that she fails to follow through with treatment.

In re A.L.L.
___ N.C. App. ___, 802 S.E.2d 598 (2017)

A trial court is not required to make findings of fact on all the evidence that is presented or state every option it considered as part of the best interest factor, “any relevant consideration”, set forth at G.S. 7B-1110(a)(6).

In re K.B.
___ N.C. App. ___, 801 S.E.2d 160 (2017)

The factual allegations attached to the petition were sufficient to put the respondent mother on notice of the alleged ground of dependency even though the box on the form petition for the ground of dependency was not checked. 

In re K.B.
___ N.C. App. ___, 801 S.E.2d 160 (2017)

Respondents allowed to be inflicted or created a substantial risk of serious physical injury by other than accidental means by their failure to (1) maintain the special needs child's Rx and (2) provide adequate supervision, both of which resulted in injuries to the child (even if self-inflicted). 

In re K.B.
___ N.C. App. ___, 801 S.E.2d 160 (2017)

Child was neglected when he he did not receive adequate supervision or discipline. Respondents allowed his Rx to lapse. Child's behavioral needs required more supervision and correct discipline than what respondents provided.

In re M.B.
___ N.C. App. ___, 800 S.E.2d 757 (2017)

The guardian’s return to North Carolina renders the issue of the applicability of the ICPC and respondent mother’s appeal moot.

In re M.B.
___ N.C. App. ___, 800 S.E.2d 757 (2017)

G.S. 7B-906.1(e)(2) does not require the court to make individual findings on whether a parent retains every right he or she had before an order granted custody or guardianship to someone else.

In re J.S.C.
___ N.C. App. ___, 800 S.E.2d 126 (2017)

It was not reversible error for court to fail to state in its consent adjudication order that the adjudicatory findings were based on the clear and convincing evidentiary standard under G.S. 7B-805 (applying to an adjudicatory hearing).

State v. Johnson
___ N.C. App. ___, 801 S.E.2d 123 (2017)

Aggravated offenses requiring lifetime sex offender registration is based on whether the elements of the offense the defendant is convicted of meet the elements of the aggravated factor statute. The elements of sex offense with a child and sexual activity by a substitute parent do not meet the criteria

In re J.D.A.D.
___ N.C. App. ___, 801 S.E.2d 653 (2017)

Incarceration alone does not support conclusion that respondent is unable to provide a safe home for the child, which is one of two required prongs to terminate parental rights under G.S. 7B-1111(a)(9). Adjudicatory findings (and not dispositional considerations) must support the conclusion that a ground exists.

In re A.P.
___ N.C.App. ___, 800 S.E.2d 77 (2017), reversed ___ N.C. ___, 812 S.E.2d 840 (2018)

THIS OPINION HAS BEEN REVERSED BY THE N.C. SUPREME COURT. The opinion looked to the definition of director when holding Mecklenburg County DSS did not have standing to invoke the jurisdiction of district court because the child's residence was in Rowan County and the child was not found in Mecklenburg County when petition was filed. 

In re L.C.
___ N.C. App. ___, 800 S.E.2d 82 (2017)

Recitations of evidence are not findings of fact. Verbatim recitations of allegations in a petition as a finding of fact is not per se reversible error. 

In re L.C.
___ N.C. App. ___, 800 S.E.2d 82 (2017)

A respondent parent who is called as a witness by DSS is a compelled (not voluntary) witness, who can assert or waive the V Amendment privilege against self-incrimination once the testimonial response to the question would tend to incriminate the witness. Respondent mother, who invoked the privilege, did not waive her right to the privilege and should not have been ordered to answer. Respondent parent was prejudiced as a result. 

In re L.C.
___ N.C. App. ___, 800 S.E.2d 82 (2017)

Findings of delay in seeking necessary medical care supported adjudication of neglect.

In re L.C.
___ N.C. App. ___, 800 S.E.2d 82 (2017)

Failure to include findings of both prongs of dependency definition is reversible error.

In re L.C.
___ N.C. App. ___, 800 S.E.2d 82 (2017)

The court cannot determine for the first time in an initial dispositional order that 7B-901(c) aggravating circumstances exist requiring an order eliminating reasonable efforts for reunification.

In re L.C.
___ N.C. App. ___, 800 S.E.2d 82 (2017)

GS 7B-903(a1) requires the court to consider relative placement and when not placing the child with a relative, make findings that the placement with a willing and available relative who can provide a safe home is contrary to the child's best interests. This finding is required even when an evaluation of the relative's home has not been completed.

In re J.K.
___ N.C. App. ___, 799 S.E.2d 439 (2017)

When a clerical error is discovered on appeal, remand to the trial court for correction is appropriate so that the record speaks the truth.

In re J.K.
___ N.C. App. ___, 799 S.E.2d 439 (2017)

Court must comply with 7B-911 and make required findings. "Custody order" is remanded for required findings regarding Chapter 50 action and to terminate 7B jurisdiction.

In re A.B.
___ N.C. App. ___, 799 S.E.2d 445 (2017)

In termination of parental rights on grounds of neglect and willful failure to make reasonable progress to correct conditions, the court must consider evidence of changed conditions up to the time of the termination hearing. Conditions include the parent's fitness to care for the child (neglect) and whether reasonable progress was made. The findings did not support either ground.

In re L.L.O.
___ N.C. App. ___, 799 S.E.2d 59 (2017)

A finding that there is a likelihood of future neglect is required to support the ground of neglect when a child has not been in the parent's custody for a significant period of time before the TPR hearing.

In re T.E.N.
___ N.C. App. ___, 798 S.E.2d 792 (2017)

For modification jurisdiction based on the court of the original decree state giving jurisdiction to North Carolina, the record in the North Carolina custody proceeding must include a court order from that other state that indicates it no longer has jurisdiction.

In re L.L.O.
___ N.C. App. ___, 799 S.E.2d 59 (2017)

The findings did not support the conclusion that the two prongs of GS 7B-1111(a)(2) were met. The opinion also raises but does not resolve the question of whether the respondent had sufficient notice of the ground alleged.

In re R.P.
___ N.C. App. ___, 798 S.E.2d 428 (2017)

Before ordering a permanent plan of guardianship, the court must find a parent is unfit or acted inconsistently with his constitutionally protected status. The parent did not waive those findings in this case.

State v. Jacobs
___ N.C. App. ___, 798 S.E.2d 532 (2017), rev'd, 370 N.C. 661 (2018)

Presence of STDs implicates Rule 412 of the Rules of Evidence. Without satisfying the exceptions enumerated in the Rule, evidence of the victim's STD diagnosis that were also not present in the Defendant were properly excluded.

State v. Varner
___ N.C. App. ___, 796 S.E.2d 834 (2017)

A parent is not criminally liable for for causing physical injury when administering corporal punishment unless that punishment causes lasting injury or is made with malicious purpose.

In re C.P.
___ N.C. App. ___, 801 S.E.2d 647 (2017)

Parent waived right to determination that she was unfit or acted inconsistently with her constitutionally protected status when the court ordered a permanent plan of guardianship to the grandfather.

In re C.P.
___ N.C. App. ___, 801 S.E.2d 647 (2017)

Based on the record, the court properly verified that the proposed guardian had adequate resources to appropriately care for the child. At the permanency planning hearing, there was evidence of the colloquy between court and proposed guardian, the department and GAL reports, and the court's judicial notice of a prior order that addressed the proposed guardian's prior care of the child.

In re C.P.
___ N.C. App. ___, 801 S.E.2d 647 (2017)

Findings of a parent's progress should not be viewed in isolation but must be considered as part of the totality of all the court’s findings when determining a permanent plan based on best interests (in this case, guardianship).

In re J.T.
___ N.C. App. ___, 796 S.E.2d 534 (2017)

Deficits in findings of fact required to cease reasonable efforts were not cured in TPR order.

In re J.T.
___ N.C. App. ___, 796 S.E.2d 534 (2017)

There was no competent evidence when reports were incorporated by reference without any oral testimony.

State v. Barnett, Jr.
369 N.C. 298 (2016)

The court may include third persons (in this case the victim's minor children) in a GS 15A-1340.50 permanent no contact order when there are findings that such contact would constitute indirect contact with the victim.

Corbett v. Lynch
___ N.C. App. ___, 795 S.E.2d 564 (2016)

A N.C.G.S. Chapter 35A guardianship of the person or general guardian includes custody of the person and overrides a Ch. 50 custody order. Jurisdiction remains with the clerk of superior court, rendering a Ch. 50 custody action moot.

In re J.A.M.
795 S.E.2d 262 (2016), rev'd and remanded by 370 N.C. 464 (2018)

CAUTION! REVERSED AND REMANDED to the Court of Appeals for reconsideration by In re J.A.M., 370 N.C. 464 (2018) requiring proper standard of review for findings of fact

In re M.Z.M.
___ N.C. App. ___, 796 S.E.2d 22 (2016)

Respondent mother was not denied effective assistance of counsel in a termination of parental rights proceeding. Her attorney's apparent strategy to concede the adjudicatory grounds and wait to introduce evidence or argument at the dispositional phase of the hearing did not result in the proceeding lacking fundamental fairness or in her being prejudiced.

In re A.H.
___ N.C. App. ___, 794 S.E.2d 866 (2016)

Competent evidence supports the court's findings regarding the relevant G.S. 7B-1110(a) factors.

In re D.T.N.A.
___ N.C. App. ___, 801 S.E.2d 642 (2016)

The evidence and findings do not support the ground of dependency under G.S. 7B-1111(a)(6). Respondent father had recommended an appropriate alternative child care arrangement. Findings of father's drug use were not supported by the evidence and did not show that his drug use interfered with his ability to provide proper care and supervision to his child.

In re D.T.N.A.
___ N.C. App. ___, 801 S.E.2d 642 (2016)

The evidence and findings do not support the conclusion that father abandoned his child as he did not demonstrate a willful intent to forego his parental duties.

In re P.T.W.
___ N.C. App. ___, 794 S.E.2d 843 (2016)

Regarding cease reunification, the court based its findings on competent evidence, which included the dss report that was admitted in evidence without objection and the social worker's testimony.

In re P.T.W.
___ N.C. App. ___, 794 S.E.2d 843 (2016)

When there is not a GAL appointed in an underlying A/N/D action and the respondent has not filed an answer/opposition denying a material allegation of a petition/motion to terminate parental rights, the court is not statutorily required to appoint a GAL for the child. Instead, the court exercises discretion when determining whether to appoint a GAL.

In re D.M.O.
___ N.C. App. ___, 794 S.E.2d 858 (2016)

The findings did not support the courts conclusion that the parent willfully abandoned her child. The findings did not address the parent's limitations on her ability to visit with the child, attend the child's games, or communicate with the father-petitioner because of her incarceration and addiction issues.

In re A.H.
___ N.C. App. ___, 794 S.E.2d 866 (2016)

The court did not abuse its discretion when quashing respondent mother's subpoena compelling her 13 year old son to appear and testify at the TPR hearing. The court's decision was based on findings of fact that supported the conclusion that compelling the child to testify was oppressive and unreasonable. In an offer of proof, the mother provided a specific forecast of her son's testimony.

In re A.H.
___ N.C.App. ___, 794 S.E.2d 866 (2016)

A court’s ruling on a motion in limine is preliminary in nature, and a court may reconsider the admissibility of challenged evidence based on other evidence that is presented at trial. To preserve the underlying evidentiary issue, the party must attempt to introduce the evidence at trial.

In re T.R.
___ N.C. App. ___, 792 S.E.2d 197 (2016)

NC had subject matter jurisdiction under G.S. 50A-203 to modify a prior custody order from Illinois. The Illinois court docket entry satisfied the court order requirement that IL was relinquishing jurisdiction to NC.

In re J.S.
___ N.C. App. ___, 792 S.E.2d 861 (2016)

The criteria of GS 7B-1000 does not apply to a permanency planning hearing held pursuant to GS 7B-906.1.

In re Patron
___ N.C. App. ___, 792 S.E.2d 853 (2016)

The district court has exclusive original jurisdiction over a judicial review of placement on the Responsible Individual List (RIL). The court's jurisdiction does not end when the juvenile turns 18 prior to the hearing.

In re Patron
___ N.C. App. ___, 792 S.E.2d 853 (2016)

The court has discretion when determining whether to stay a judicial review of placement on the Responsible Individual List.

In re Patron
___ N.C. App. ___, 792 S.E.2d 853 (2016)

After finding that a juvenile was abused by the respondent, who is a responsible individual, the court is mandated to conclude as a matter of law that the respondent be placed on the RIL.

In re J.S.
___ N.C. App. ___, 792 S.E.2d 861 (2016)

Failure to appeal the 7B-911 or Ch. 50 civil custody order moots the effect of the mother’s challenge to the permanency planning order.

In re J.R.
___ N.C. App. ___, 791 S.E.2d 922 (2016)

There is no statutory or constitutional right to self-representation in an abuse, neglect, or dependency proceeding. The court did not abuse its discretion in denying respondent mother's request to proceed pro se.

Hedden v. Isbel
___ N.C. App. ___, 792 S.E.2d 571 (2016)

Personal jurisdiction is obtained over defendent when (s)he is served while physically in North Carolina.

In re G.T.
791 S.E.2d 274 (2016), aff'd per curiam, 370 N.C. 387 (2017)

The stipulated facts supported the court's conclusion of neglect.

In re T.W.
___ N.C. App. ___, 796 S.E.2d 792 (2016)

When ordering no reasonable efforts for reunification, a court may only make a finding of a GS 7B-901(c) factor at the initial dispositional hearing. When reunification is not a concurrent permanent plan and the court has not previously ordered no reasonable efforts at the initial disposition, the court must make a GS 7B-906.2(b) finding.

In re T.W.
___ N.C. App. ___, 796 S.E.2d 792 (2016)

Custody to a non-parent requires verification that the proposed custodian (1) understands the legal significance of the order (this was proved) and (2) has adequate resources to care for the child (there was insufficient evidence to support this finding).

In re K.G.W.
___ N.C. App. ___, 791 S.E.2d 540 (2016)

The court as trier of fact has discretion to determine what weight and credibility to give to evidence. That discretion includes determining an expert should not testify because the witness lacks information that would assist the trier of fact in deciding a fact or issue.

In re T.W.
___ N.C. App. ___, 796 S.E.2d 792 (2016)

Based on the court's findings, there was no abuse of discretion when the court determined there would be no visitation under GS 7B-905.1 between the mother and her child.

In re T.W.
___ N.C. App. ___, 796 S.E.2d 792 (2016)

It is reversible error for the court to waive permanency planning hearings when it has not made written findings of fact by clear and convincing evidence of each of the factors enumerated in 7B-906.1(n).

In re K.P.
___ N.C. App. ___, 790 S.E.2d 744 (2016)

An adjudication of abuse, neglect, or dependency requires a court hearing. Stipulations of fact or a consent agreement must be made on the record and comply with GS 7B-801, -802, and -807.

In re J.M.
___ N.C. App. ___, 797 S.E.2d 305 (2016)

GS 7B-1101 requires the child reside in, be found in, or be in the custody of a county department or child placing agency at the time a petition or motion to TPR is filed in the district in order for the court to have subject matter jurisdiction.

In re E.B.
___ N.C. App. ___, 791 S.E.2d 691 (2016)

The trial court had subject matter jurisdiction to terminate respondent mother’s parental rights after the child’s GAL filed a verified motion to terminate parental rights.

In re L.Z.A.
___ N.C. App. ___, 792 S.E.2d 160 (2016)

A child may be adjudicated abused when he or she sustains unexplained non-accidental injuries when in the care of her parents.

In re L.Z.A.
___ N.C. App. ___, 792 S.E.2d 160 (2016)

A child may be adjudicated neglected when the evidence and findings show the child suffered non-accidental injuries while in her parents’ custody even though there is no explanation for how those injuries occurred.

In re L.Z.A.
___ N.C. App. ___, 792 S.E.2d 160 (2016)

“[I]t is not per se reversible error for a trial court’s fact findings to mirror the wording of a petition or other pleading prepared by a party.”

In re L.Z.A.
___ N.C. App. ___, 792 S.E.2d 160 (2016)

When reading two orders together, the order established a visitation plan that includes supervision, duration, and frequency and complies with G.S. 7B-905.1.

In re L.Z.A.
___ N.C. App. ___, 792 S.E.2d 160 (2016)

An initial disposition order that establishes a concurrent plan of reunification and adoption does not require findings of fact that are specified in G.S. 7B-901(c) since reasonable efforts for reunification were not ceased. Findings enumerated in G.S. 7B-906.1 are not required to be made at initial dispositional hearings held pursuant to G.S. 7B-901.

In re C.L.S.
369 N.C. 58 (2016)

A parent can show an interest in his child's welfare despite being incarcerated. In this case there was sufficient evidence provided through the DSS social worker that the father neglected his child.

In re K.B.
___ N.C. App. ___, 791 S.E.2d 669 (2016)

The court must verify a proposed guardian has adequate resources to care for the child. Without evidence of monthly expenses and income, the evidence was not sufficient to support the court's finding that the proposed guardian had adequate resources to appropriately care for the child.

In re K.B.
___ N.C. App. ___, 791 S.E.2d 669 (2016)

The court must make findings of each 7B-906.1(n) factor to waive further permanency planning hearings.

In re M.M.
___ N.C. App. ___, 795 S.E.2d 222 (2016)

A no contact provision must be based on findings that are supported by competent evidence in the record.

In re M.M.
___ N.C. App. ___, 795 S.E.2d 222 (2016)

When an order changes a previous order by adding a no contact provision regarding a child and her grandfather, that is a change in custody. That order may be appealed under G.S. 7B-1001(a)(4).

In re E.M.
___ N.C. App. ___, 790 S.E.2d 863 (2016)

Respondent parent did not preserve for appellate review the court's consideration of reports that were not formally offered into evidence.

In re E.M.
___ N.C. App. ___, 790 S.E.2d 863 (2016)

Regarding the effect of legislative changes on "pending" cases, the amendments do not apply to written orders that are entered after the effective date when the hearing that results in the written order occurred prior to the effective date of the amendments.

In re E.M.
___ N.C. App. ___, 790 S.E.2d 863 (2016)

Before ordering custody to a non-parent, the court must verify that the person has adequate financial resources to appropriately care for the child and understands the legal significance of the placement. The court's findings regarding these two requirements must be based on competent evidence.

In re E.M.
___ N.C. App. ___, 790 S.E.2d 863 (2016)
Before ordering a parent to pay for supervised visits, the court must make findings of the cost of visitation and the parent’s ability to pay for it.
In re E.M.
___ N.C. App. ___, 790 S.E.2d 863 (2016)

To order custody to a non-parent, the court must find by clear and convincing evidence that parent has acted inconsistently with his or constitutionally protected interest to care, custody, and control of his or her child.

In re E.M.
___ N.C. App. ___, 790 S.E.2d 863 (2016)

It is reversible error when the court does not make findings by clear and convincing evidence of all the enumerated factors in G.S. 7B-906.1(n) when ordering that permanency planning hearings are waived.

Tanner v. Tanner
___ N.C. App. ___, 789 S.E.2d 888 (2016)

The court should not proceed with a hearing on the merits of an issue before a necessary party is joined in the action.

In re K.C.
___ N.C. App. ___, 791 S.E.2d 284 (2016) (originally unpublished but subsequently published)

The court should not hold a permanency planning hearing when a parent objects on the basis of receiving an untimely, and therefore, deficient notice of the hearing.

In re E.R.
___ N.C. App. ___, 795 S.E.2d 103 (2016)

G.S. 7B-903(a1) requires the court make findings of fact explaining why a proposed relative placement is not in the child's best interests. These findings are still required when ICWA applies.

In re K.J.B.
___ N.C. App. ___, 797 S.E.2d 516 (2016)

Neglect adjudication requires findings that child has been harmed or is at substantial risk of suffering harm.

In re T.D.
___ N.C. App. ___, 790 S.E.2d 752 (2016) (originally unpublished but subsequently published)

Parents are entitled to effective assistance of counsel in a termination of parental rights hearing.

In re Adoption of C.H.M.
___ N.C. App. ___, 788 S.E.2d 594 (2016), rev'd, ___ N.C. ___, 812 S.E.2d 804 (2018)

An unwed father satisfied all three statutory requirements mandating his consent to the child's adoption.

In re D.L.W.
368 N.C. 835 (2016)

Findings in the TPR order demonstrate the mother’s failure to correct the conditions that led to the children’s removal and were not simply the result of being poor.

In re D.L.W.
368 N.C. 835 (2016)

The trial court’s findings support the court’s conclusion that there would be a repetition of neglect based on the children living in an injurious environment because of their parents' continued incidents of domestic violence even after the children were removed from their home and adjudicated neglected.

In re A.M.
___ N.C. App. ___, 786 S.E.2d 772 (2016)

G.S. 7B-904 authorizes a court to order a parent to pay a reasonable amount of child support after making findings of the parent's ability to pay and the child's reasonable needs.

In re D.L.W.
368 N.C. 835 (2016)

G.S. 7B-904(d1)(3) authorizes the trial court in an A/N/D action to order a parent to “take appropriate steps to remedy conditions in the home that led to or contributed to the juvenile’s adjudication or to the court’s decision to remove custody of the children from the parent, guardian, custodian, or caretaker," which in this case included making a budget.

In re A.M.
___ N.C. App. ___, 786 S.E.2d 772 (2016)

G.S. 7B-101(1)e. defines abused juvenile as “[a]ny juvenile less than 18 years of age whose parent, guardian, custodian, or caretaker . . . [c]reates or allows to be created serious emotional damage to the juvenile… evidenced by a juvenile’s severe anxiety, depression, withdrawal, or aggressive behavior toward [herself] or others.” The statute does not require a formal psychiatric diagnosis.

In re O.D.S.
___ N.C. App. ___, 786 S.E.2d 410 (2016)

For entry of an order, N.C Civ. P. Rule 58 that an order be (1) in writing, (2) signed by the judge, and (3) filed with the clerk. The written order, and not the oral rendition, is what controls. A written judgment may differ from the oral rendition; however, if it does the appellant must file a written notice of appeal of the written judgment even if an written notice of appeal was filed after the oral judgment was rendered.

Weideman v. Shelton
___ N.C. App. ___, 787 S.E.2d 412 (2016)

The non-parent failed to establish by clear and convincing evidence that the mother acted inconsistently with her protected parental status to care, custody, and control of her child. The mother never intended to permanently cede her parental rights to a non-parent. Also, the non-parent cannot simultaneously intentionally prevent the mother from having a relationship with her child and argue that the mother has failed to shoulder her burden to care for her child.

State v. Bohannon
___ N.C. App. ___, 786 S.E.2d 781 (2016)

G.S. 14-318.4(d)(1) defines "serious bodily injury" as “[b]odily injury that creates a substantial risk of death...." In determining if there is a substantial risk of death, “the age and particular vulnerability of a minor victim must factor into this analysis.” Three expert witnesses who treated the child testified about the impact of bleeding on an infant’s developing brain, and how it could be life-threatening and would require monitoring for dangerous side effects that could arise as the brain continues to develop.

In re A.C.
247 N.C. App. 528 (2016)

The government may only take a child away from a parent upon a showing, supported by clear and convincing evidence, that the parent is unfit or has acted inconsistently with his or her constitutionally protected status. There is no bright line test when determining if a parent has acted inconsistently with his or her parental rights. A court employs a case-by-case analysis and looks to the parent’s conduct and intentions. The parent acted inconsistently with her parental rights.

In re A.C.
247 N.C. App. 528 (2016)

G.S. 7B-1000 authorizes a modification of an order based on a change in circumstances OR the needs of the juvenile. The evidence and court’s findings supported its conclusion that there was a substantial change in circumstances that affected the child’s general welfare and best interests since the entry of the review order.

In re C.A.D.
247 N.C. App. 552 (2016)

A respondent mother was not the "aggrieved party" when the court did not award custody to the maternal grandparents in a permanency planning order. Therefore, she did not have standing to appeal.

In re C.A.D.
247 N.C. App. 552 (2016)

When determining if termination of parental rights is in the child’s best interests, the court must consider factors specified in G.S. 7B-1110(a). The availability of a relative for placement is not one of the designated factors, and whether a relative is available is not determinative of the child’s best interests.

In re S.Z.H.
247 N.C. App. 254 (2016)

The petition failed to put the respondent on adequate notice of the ground of abandonment. Respondent did not raise the issue.

In re S.Z.H.
247 N.C. App. 254 (2016)

A TPR order shall be entered no later than 30 days after the completion of the hearing. A party may petition for a writ of mandamus when this time period is not met.

In re S.Z.H.
247 N.C. App. 254 (2016)

A TPR based on willful abandonment requires that a parent's actions during the statutory required six-month period preceding the filing of the action are demonstrated to be wholly inconsistent with a desire to maintain custody of the child.

In re S.Z.H.
247 N.C. App. 254 (2016)

A termination of parental rights (TPR) hearing consists of two stages: adjudication of a ground and disposition based on the best interests of the child.

State v. Watkins
247 N.C. App. 391 (2016)

In misdemeanor child abuse action, the state introduced substantial evidence that Defendant created a “substantial risk of physical injury” to her 18-month child. Defendant’s reliance on findings of fact that supported conclusions of neglect in juvenile proceedings (7B actions) illustrate some circumstances that can create a substantial risk of harm to a child but are not determinative on the jury.

In re M.S.
247 N.C. App. 89 (2016)

Both the Juvenile Code and adoption statutes differentiate between a parent and stepparent. G.S. 7B-101(3) includes stepparent in the definition of "caretaker." Caretakers do not have standing to take an appeal in an abuse, neglect, or dependency proceeding.

In re K.C.
___ N.C. App. ___, 805 S.E.2d 299 (2016)

To terminate parental rights on the grounds of neglect by abandonment, the court must make findings that "the parent has acted in a way that manifests a willful determination to forego all parental claims to the child as of the time of the termination hearing." The findings do not support the conclusion that the respondent neglected the child by abandonment as respondent paid child support, saw and talked to the child, and did not stop visiting with the child voluntarily. 

In re N.T.
368 N.C. 705 (2016)

Although subject matter jurisdiction may be raised at any time, there is a presumption that a court has jurisdiction when it acts on a matter. The respondent, who is raising subject matter jurisdiction, has the burden of proving there is no jurisdiction. Respondent mother did not show that the petition, which appeared to be facially valid, was not verified before a person who was authorized to administer oaths.

In re M.P.M.
368 N.C. 704 (2016)

Completion of a case plan by a parent does not preclude a court's conclusion that grounds of neglect exist for TPR. When the ground is neglect, a court may look to the historical facts of the case when predicting whether neglect is likely to occur in the future.

State v. McLaughlin
246 N.C. App. 306 (2016)

The Confrontation Clause in a criminal trial does not apply to a 15 year old's nontestimonial statement made to a nurse as part of medical evaluation conducted at the Children's Advocacy Center. The primary purpose of the statement was for medical diagnosis and treatment to safeguard the child's mental and physical health.

State v. McLaughlin
246 N.C. App. 306 (2016)

A 15 year old's statements to mother were an excited utterance, even though there was a 10 day delay between the last incident of abuse and the child's statement.

In re C.B.
245 N.C. App. 197 (2016)

Ineffective assistance of counsel includes both the deficient performance of an attorney and the degree of the deficiency being significant enough to deprive someone of a fair hearing.

In re C.B.
245 N.C. App. 197 (2016)

On appeal, unchallenged findings of fact made by the court support challenged findings of fact.

In re C.B.
245 N.C. App. 197 (2016)

A child is dependent when her parent (guardian or custodian) (1) is unable to provide for her care or supervision and (2) lacks an appropriate alternative child care arrangement. Here, the child was dependent when her mother failed to participate in the child's discharge planning from a psychiatric hospitalization.

In re C.B.
245 N.C. App. 197 (2016)

A child with a severe mental illness and her sister are both neglected juveniles, based on their mother's continued failure to maintain meaningful mental health treatment for the child with severe mental illness and to mitigate the effects of that child's behavior on the child's sister.

In re Q.A.
245 N.C. App. 71 (2016)

Neglect is based on the circumstances and conditions surrounding a child, not on the fault of a parent. Children exposed to the same injurious environment are neglected even when some of the children have a parent from whom they were not removed available for placement.

In re A.B.
245 N.C. App. 35 (2016)

The findings of fact were sufficient even though some referred to the allegations in the petition and not every one was identified as having been found by clear, cogent, and convincing evidence. The court indicated it was applying the standard of clear, cogent, and convincing evidence and no other contradictory standard was included in the order.

In re A.L.
245 N.C. App. 55 (2016)

District court lacks jurisdiction to issue custody review orders after DSS voluntarily dismisses a petition.

In re A.L.
245 N.C. App. 55 (2016)

The district court acquired jurisdiction when a petition to terminate parental rights was filed by a person or agency with standing. The department had standing to initiate a TPR based on the mother’s relinquishment of custody of the child to the department (G.S. 7B-1103(a)(4)).

In re C.R.B.
245 N.C. App. 65 (2016)

A county department social worker's testimony regarding events that occurred before her involvement with the case but which she learned of from the department's case record was admissible when the foundation for the business record exception to hearsay was established.

In re A.B.
245 N.C. App. 35 (2016)

When the appellate court remands an order that was appealed to the trial court with specific direction to make its order internally consistent, the remand requires the trial court to make new findings and omit other findings. These changes would contradict findings the trial court had orally rendered for inclusion in the first order. The trial court is not obligated to consider new evidence and respondent failed to show how the court abused its discretion by not hearing new evidence .

In re A.L.
245 N.C. App. 55 (2016)

When a mother executes a relinquishment to the county department, the department obtains custody of the child. The other parent may have his rights terminated on the ground of failing to pay a reasonable portion of the cost of care for a child in department custody when the parent is physically and financially able to do so.

In re T.N.G.
244 N.C. App. 398 (2015)

Acts that occurred in South Carolina may be considered by the North Carolina trial court when determining whether the child was neglected.

In re T.N.G.
244 N.C. App. 398 (2015)

In a case in which a child has no "home state," the trial court determined North Carolina had initial child custody jurisdiction based on "significant connection jurisdiction."

In re M.C.
244 N.C. App. 410 (2015)

Subject matter jurisdiction for a termination of parental rights (TPR) requires compliance with both G.S. 7B-1101 and the Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction Enforcement Act. Here, there was no jurisdiction under G.S. 7B-1101.

In re T.N.G.
244 N.C. App. 398 (2015)

The court had the authority under G.S. 7B-904 to order the respondent father to maintain stable employment and obtain a domestic violence assessment.

In re T.N.G.
244 N.C. App. 398 (2015)

Dependency adjudication is reversed because there was no evidence addressing the respondents’ ability to provide care or supervision to the child.

In re F.C.D.
244 N.C. App. 243 (2015)

In determining neglect, a court may consider whether another child who lives in the home has been abused or neglected by an adult who regularly resides in the home. A sibling who witnessed her brother's abuse was neglected even though she herself was not physically harmed.

In re J.H.
244 N.C. App. 255 (2015)

The court must make independent findings that prospective guardians have adequate financial resources to provide for the child and understand the legal significant of the guardianship.

In re F.C.D.
244 N.C. App. 243 (2015)

Respondent mother was appropriately placed on RIL and was not deprived of her right to represent herself or retain her own attorney when her court appointed attorney in the A/N/D also represented her in the RIL hearing.

In re J.H.
244 N.C. App. 255 (2015)

When admitted without objection, reports my be considered by the court and the issue is not preserved for appeal.

In re F.C.D.
244 N.C. App. 243 (2015)

The definition of abuse at G.S. 7B-101(1)c. looks to the procedures or devices a parent, guardian, custodian, or caretaker used to modify a child's behavior. It does not examine the child's behavior that the procedures or devices are meant to correct.

In re J.H.
244 N.C. App. 255 (2015)

It is reversible error if the court does not make findings of each of the enumerated factors in G.S. 7B-906.1(n) when waiving permanency planning hearings.

In re J.H.
244 N.C. App. 255 (2015)

Remanded for the NC trial court to examine the Texas order and determine if TX exercised temporary emergency jurisdiction, exclusive continuing jurisdiction, or jurisdiction in substantial conformity with the UCCJEA when issuing its January 2014 order. Depending on the trial court’s determination of how the TX court exercised jurisdiction, the NC court must communicate with the TX court. If NC determines it does not have subject matter jurisdiction, it must dismiss the petition.

In re J.H.
244 N.C. App. 255 (2015)

An order that does not specify the length of visits does not comply with G.S. 7B-905.1.

In re J.R.
243 N.C. App. 309 (2015)

Neglect requires the child to experience a physical or emotional impairment or substantial risk of such impairment. A single violation of a safety agreement signed by both the respondent mother and father and the mother's lack of stable housing did not place the child at risk of harm. A court should look at the totality of the evidence when determining if the child is neglected.

In re E.L.E.
243 N.C. App. 301 (2015)

Because the child was placed with blood relatives whose home does not meet the criteria of a foster home, the mother's TPR cannot be based on G.S. 7B-1111(a)(3).

In re E.L.E.
243 N.C. App. 301 (2015)

A termination of parental rights based on neglect requires a finding about the probability of the repetition of neglect when the child has not been in the parent’s custody for a significant period of time before the TPR hearing. Without this finding the court may not terminate a parent’s rights on the ground of neglect set forth at G.S. 7B-1111(a)(1).

State v. Pender
243 N.C. App. 142 (2015)

There is no kidnapping when a parent or legal custodian consents to the unlawful confinement of his own minor child, even if the child does not consent. Only one parent is required to consent.

In re S.D.
243 N.C. App. 65 (2015)

Pivotal findings of fact are not supported by the evidence, and the findings of fact do not support the conclusion of law that the respondent mother failed to make reasonable progress to correct the conditions that led to the child’s removal. “While ‘extremely limited progress is not reasonable,’…certainly perfection is not required to reach the ‘reasonable’ standard.”

In re R.R.N.
368 N.C. 167 (2015)
A caretaker includes an adult relative who is entrusted with the juvenile's care. A totality of the circumstances test that looks at duration, frequency, location of care, and level of decision-making authority given to the adult relative by the parent must be applied when determining whether an adult relative is "entrusted with the juvenile's care." The relative supervising a sleepover was not a caretaker.
In re J.A.U.
242 N.C. App. 603 (2015)

Under G.S. 7B-1103(a), a guardian has standing to initiate a TPR; a custodian does not. A custodian will only have standing if the child continuously resided with him or her for two years preceding the filing of the TPR petition. Because standing is jurisdictional, evidence must support the court's finding that the 2-year requirement was satisfied.

In re D.L.P.
242 N.C. App. 597 (2015)

When a court determines a respondent parent is incompetent and requires a Rule 17 GAL, the court may not proceed with a hearing if the appointed substitute GAL is not present. In this case, the timing of the court's determination that the mother needs a GAL is unclear and no GAL was present at the adjudication or disposition hearings.

In re P.S.
242 N.C. App. 430 (2015)

A temporary disposition order is not a final order that allows for an appeal of the adjudication and initial disposition under G.S. 7B-1001(a)(3) or an order changing legal custody of a juvenile under G.S. 7B-1001(a)(4).

In re M.A.E.
242 N.C. App. 312 (2015) (originally unpublished but subsequently published)

The court did not abuse its discretion when it admitted statements made by the eight-year old child to the DSS social worker and the forensic interviewer. The court found the criteria required under Rule 803(24) of the Rules of Evidence had been satisfied.

In re M.A.E.
242 N.C. App. 312 (2015) (originally unpublished but subsequently published)

G.S. 7B-101(1)d. includes in the definition of abuse, a juvenile whose parent who has permitted or encouraged the commission of certain sex crimes by, with, or upon the child. Both the older sibling that repeatedly sexually abused the younger sibling and the younger sibling were abused when the respondent parents were aware of the abuse and failed to take appropriate remedial measures to prevent it from recurring.

In re J.C.
235 N.C. App. 69 (2014)

When supported by clear and convincing evidence, findings of trial court are conclusive even when some evidence supports different findings.

Ohio v. Clark
135 S.Ct. 2173 (2015)
Testimonial statements are excluded by the Confrontation Clause. In determining if a statement is testimonial, a court will apply the “primary purpose test”: was the statement made with the primary purpose of being an out-of-court substitute for trial testimony. Here, a child’s statement to his teacher was not testimonial and its admission did not violate the Confrontation Clause. A mandated reporting law does not convert the primary purpose to one of obtaining evidence for criminal prosecution.
In re A.G.M.
241 N.C. App. 426 (2015)

The court does not have authority to order a parent to participate in therapy in an adjudication order. G.S. 7B-904 authorizes a court to order a parent to participate in therapy in a dispositional or subsequent order. A TPR hearing 3 months after the dispositional order is entered is insufficient to determine if the children are at risk of repetition of neglect.

In re A.G.M.
241 N.C. App. 426 (2015)

The ground that the mother willfully left her children in a foster care placement for more than 12 months is not valid when the TPR hearing was held less than 4 months after the children were removed by a valid court order after the court acquired subject matter jurisdiction under the UCCJEA. Orders entered before the court had subject matter jurisdiction are void ad initio.

In re A.L.T.
241 N.C. App. 443 (2015)

The rules of evidence apply at adjudicatory hearings; at dispositional hearings, the court relies on evidence that is relevant, reliable, and necessary to determine the most appropriate disposition for the child. Competent evidence supported a neglect adjudication. A court need not make findings regarding a parent's culpability when adjudicating neglect.

In re A.G.M.
241 N.C. App. 426 (2015)

Emergency temporary jurisdiction under the UCCJEA limits a court’s authority to ordering temporary custody of the children to DSS. The court is without jurisdiction to order DSS to do anything beyond what is necessary to take care of the children or to consider other matters related to the custody of the children. Orders entered before the court had subject matter jurisdiction are void ab initio and evidence of mother's noncompliance with those void orders may not be considered in subsequent court proceedings.

In re M.K.
241 N.C. App. 467 (2015)

A child’s exposure to domestic violence may constitute an environment injurious to a child’s welfare resulting in an adjudication of neglect.

In re M.K.
241 N.C. App. 467 (2015)

Findings of fact must reflect the court's logical reasoning when considering the evidence.

In re J.C.
368 N.C. 89 (2015)
When a parent is ordered to pay for the cost of supervised visitation, the court must make findings that the parent has the ability to pay.
In re T.L.H.
368 N.C. 101 (2015)
The court has discretion in deciding whether to hold a competency hearing to determine whether the parent requires a Rule 17 GAL. Substantial deference will be given to the trial court, who has interacted with and observed the respondent.
In re D.L.W.
241 N.C. App. 32 (2015)

The court made the best interests of the child findings pursuant to G.S. 7B-1110(a)(1)-(5) and is not required to make a finding on all the evidence that was presented under G.S. 7B-1110(a)(6), “any relevant consideration.”

In re J.W.
241 N.C. App. 44 (2015)

To be neglected, a juvenile must suffer some physical, mental, or emotional impairment, or a substantial risk of such impairment.

In re P.A.
241 N.C. App. 53 (2015)

Cross-examination that demonstrated respondent's prior history with DSS was not objected to during trial and was not fundamentally unfair.

In re J.W.
241 N.C. App. 44 (2015)

G.S. 7B-905.1 requires the court order include the minimum frequency and length of visits and whether the visits shall be supervised.

In re J.W.
241 N.C. App. 44 (2015)

The court did not abuse its discretion when ordering the children remain in DSS custody despite their mother completing her case plan. At disposition, the court looks at the best interests of the child.

In re P.A.
241 N.C. App. 53 (2015)

A court is required to verify and make an independent determination that the proposed guardian (1) understands the legal significance of the guardianship and (2) has adequate resources to care for the child.

In re J.W.
241 N.C. App. 44 (2015)

"It is not per se reversible error for a trial court's fact findings to mirror the wording of a petition or other pleading prepared by a party."

In re P.A.
241 N.C. App. 53 (2015)

It is reversible error if the court does not make findings of each of the enumerated factors in G.S. 7B-906.1(n) when waiving permanency planning hearings. Child had not resided in the placement for one year before the hearing waiving further reviews.

In re C.J.H.
240 N.C. App. 489 (2015)

Willfulness is a question of fact for the court. Although the relevant time period for abandonment is the six months immediately preceding the filing of the petition or the motion, the court may look to the respondent's conduct before that time period when determining if the parent was acting in good faith to maintain or re-establish a relationship with the child.

In re C.J.H.
240 N.C. App. 489 (2015)

The court did not abuse its discretion when denying a continuance after findings the respondent's decision to start a new job the week of the TPR hearing was not extraordinary circumstances.

In re N.B.
240 N.C. App. 353 (2015)

New York court relinquished jurisdiction to North Carolina in UCCJEA case. Although respondent mother argued that the NY order relinquishing jurisdiction did not contain required findings under NY law, the UCCJEA does not require a NC court to collaterally review a facially valid order from the original decree state before exercising jurisdiction.

In re N.B.
240 N.C. App. 353 (2015)

An order that sets forth visitation of at least one visit per month for a minimum of one hour to be supervised by the family therapist with the respondent mother to coordinate the schedule with the family therapist meets the minimum requirements of G.S. 7B-905.1.

In re N.B.
240 N.C. App. 353 (2015)

The findings in a cease reunification order need not quote the exact language of the statute but instead must make clear that the trial court considered the substance of the statutorily required findings.

In re N.B.
240 N.C. App. 353 (2015)

When an order eliminates reunification as a permanent plan effectively ceases reunification efforts.

In re N.B.
240 N.C. App. 353 (2015)

There are no specific findings a court must make where verifying the proposed guardians understand the legal significance of the guardianship and have adequate resources to care for the child.

In re M.B.
240 N.C. App. 140 (2015)

A 12-year-old boy in DSS custody is readmitted to a level IV PRTF. There was no available less restrictive setting because one had not been pursued. The child's constitutionally protected liberty interests were compromised by DSS' lackluster performance in taking timely action to secure a less restrictive discharge placement. A readmission hearing is not a custody proceeding that is automatically stayed by an A/N/D action. The issue addressing DSS' party status was not timely preserved for appeal

In re O.J.R.
239 N.C. App. 329 (2015)

In a TPR based on neglect, the court must look to the fitness of the parent at the time of the termination proceeding and cannot base its decision solely on past conditions that no longer exist.

In re O.J.R.
239 N.C. App. 329 (2015)

There must be adequate findings of fact to support the court’s ultimate finding or a conclusion of law. Findings that are not supported by competent evidence are insufficient. The order must specify the ground on which the TPR was granted.

In re H.D.
239 N.C. App. 318 (2015)

TPR due to willfully leaving a child in foster care or other placement requires (1) that the parent willfully left the child in foster care or other placement outside the home for 12 months and (2) the parent has not made reasonable progress to correct the conditions that led to the child's removal. Willfulness does not require fault, but requires the parent's unwillingness to make an effort toward reasonable progress.

In re H.D.
239 N.C. App. 318 (2015)

Court did address best interests factor regarding the likelihood of the children's adoption.

In re H.D.
239 N.C. App. 318 (2015)

The findings of fact in a court order do not need to recite the statutory language. Instead, the findings may embrace the substance of the statutory language. The findings support the conclusion that reunification efforts would be futile or inconsistent with the juvenile's health and safety.

In re V.B.
239 N.C. App. 340 (2015)

Although post-petition evidence is not admissible in an adjudicatory hearing for abuse, neglect, or dependency, for dependency, evidence of paternity being established after the petition has been filed is admissible. Here, there were no allegations about the father's ability to provide for or arrange for the child's care and supervision. Dependency requires both prongs of G.S. 7B-101(9) be proved by clear and convincing evidence for both parents.

State v. Houser
239 N.C. App. 410 (2015)

Defendant was convicted of felony child abuse on his 3-year old stepdaughter where he inflicted serious bodily injury and the jury found two aggravating factors: EHAC & victim was very young. The officer's testimony was not expert opinion testimony or a comment on the defendant's truthfulness; it was an explanation of the investigative process.

In re I.D.
239 N.C. App. 172 (2015) (originally unpublished but subsequently published)

An adjudication cannot be ordered as a judgment on the pleadings but instead requires a hearing where evidence beyond the verified petition is required.

In re A.B.
239 N.C. App. 157 (2015)

An order is the trial court’s responsibility even when a mistake is made by the counsel who prepared it. The findings of fact were inconsistent and contrary to the conclusions of law.

In re A.B.
239 N.C. App. 157 (2015)

A motion to reopen an action to admit additional evidence after the close of a hearing, and not a Rule 60 motion, is the appropriate procedure for a party to take when the court has not yet entered

In re B.L.H.
239 N.C. App. 52 (2015)

Under the UCCJEA, continuing exclusive jurisdiction looks to where a party presently resides, and not the party's domicile.

In re J.D.R.
239 N.C. App. 63 (2015)

G.S. 7B-905.1 requires the court order for visitation include a minimum duration, frequency, and level of supervision. The court may not delegate its judicial function of awarding visitation to the child’s custodian, such as determining whether the mother complied with the court’s order for conditional expansion of her visitation rights.

In re J.D.R.
239 N.C. App. 63 (2015)

The court found that the child lived in an environment injurious to his welfare and was neglected despite his mother's providing for him financially, medically and educationally.

In re A.E.C.
239 N.C. App. 36 (2015)

Order of paternity was entered and father became a party to the A/N/D action after the entry of a cease reunification order that included a permanent plan of adoption and ordered DSS to file a TPR. Despite father's late appearance in the case, the trial court is required to make findings regarding reunification and reasonable efforts.

In re M.G.
239 N.C. App. 77 (2015)

A parent who is represented by an attorney in an underlying A/N/D action continues to be represented by that attorney in the TPR action. The attorney is not provisionally appointed in the TPR. The attorney must seek to withdraw and must provide reasonable notice to the client.

In re B.L.H.
239 N.C. App. 52 (2015)

A father was denied fundamental fairness in a TPR action because his attorney failed to make sufficient efforts to communicate with him.

In re A.E.C.
239 N.C. App. 36 (2015)

A permanency planning order that does not explicitly cease reunification efforts but has a permanent plan of adoption and orders DSS to file a TPR is a cease reunification order.

In re A.N.S.
239 N.C. App. 46 (2015)

A preliminary hearing applies "only when the TPR petition demonstrated the petitioner is unaware of the name or identity of a parent." A preliminary hearing was not required when a father's identity is known but "John Doe" is named in the petition as well.

In re J.D.R.
239 N.C. App. 63 (2015)

Without any evidence or findings regarding the availability of an alternative child care arrangement, the child is not dependent.

In re J.D.R.
239 N.C. App. 63 (2015)

A custody order under G.S. 7B-911 requires that the court make findings and conclusions required under G.S. Chapter 50 and that continued state intervention is not needed.

In re A.E.C.
239 N.C. App. 36 (2015)

A proper and timely appeal of a termination of parental rights order that includes a cease reunification order as an issue for appeal properly raises the cease reunification order for appeal pursuant to G.S. 7B-1001(a)(5)a.

In re H.D.
239 N.C. App. 318 (2015)

A cease reunification order can also be considered upon the appeal of a TPR as a "proposed issue."

In re A.E.C.
239 N.C. App. 36 (2015)

Relying on the reasoning in an unpublished case, In re J.R., 233 N.C. App. 786 (2014), a proper and timely appeal of a termination of parental rights order that includes a cease reunification order as an issue for appeal properly raises the cease reunification order for appeal pursuant to G.S. 7B-1001(a)(5)a. A writ of certiorari is moot.

In re J.C.
235 N.C. App. 69 (2014)

When a clerical error on a trial court’s order is discovered on appeal, it should be remanded for correction and ensure the record “speaks the truth.”

In re Baby Boy
238 N.C. App. 316 (2014)
G.S. 7B-1003 does not limit the court’s jurisdiction to hear a TPR pending an appeal of an order entered in non-7B action, such as an adoption proceeding brought pursuant to G.S. Chapter 48.
Gerhauser v. Van Bourgondien
238 N.C.App. 275 (2014)
North Carolina lacked subject matter jurisdiction under UCCJEA to hear a modification of North Carolina custody order when the mother, father and children had not resided in North Carolina for several years. North Carolina did not have significant connection jurisdiction. Parties cannot consent to subject matter jurisdiction.
In re Adoption of B.J.R.
238 N.C. App. 308 (2014)
Father's consent is not required in adoption proceeding because he failed to make reasonable and consistent support payments within his financial means for the mother, child or both. Father also failed to grasp the opportunity to develop a relationship with the child.
In re J.K.P.
238 N.C. App. 334 (2014)
Respondent mother knowingly and voluntarily waived her right to appointed counsel.
In re A.R.
238 N.C.App. 302 (2014)
The trial court did not abuse its discretion in appointing a guardian ad litem of assistance after determining the mother had diminished capacity but was not incompetent.
In re L.M.
238 N.C. App. 345 (2014)
A parent’s progress and/or a child’s preference (that he or she be returned to his or her parent) is not conclusive on a court’s best interests determination. When ordering guardianship, the court must verify the proposed guardian understands the legal significance of the guardianship and accepts the responsibility.
In re J.K.P.
238 N.C. App. 334 (2014)
A court has jurisdiction to correct a clerical mistake in its order so long as the correction occurs before an appeal is docketed.
In re Baby Boy
238 N.C. App. 316 (2014)
An appeal of a TPR is not moot even after a child's adoption because of the future collateral legal consequences of the TPR on the parent.
In re A.R.
238 N.C.App. 302 (2014)
When the right to appeal a cease reunification order is timely preserved, the appeal may be heard if a TPR is not commenced within 180 days of the cease reunification order. To be timely, the appeal must be made within 30 days after the 180 days lapses.
In re H.H.
237 N.C. App. 431 (2014)

G.S. 7B-904 limits a court's authority to order a parent to take specific actions to those actions that would correct the conditions that contributed to a juvenile's adjudication or removal.

OVERRULED BY In re S.G., ___ N.C. App. ___ (Nov. 19, 2019)
In re H.H.
237 N.C. App. 431 (2014)

"We take this opportunity to urge our district court judges to make detailed findings of fact on all competent evidence relevant to juvenile adjudications."

In re H.H.
237 N.C. App. 431 (2014)
G.S. 7B-101(1)c. defines abuse as using or allowing to be used cruel or grossly inappropriate procedures or devices to modify a child’s behavior. Child was abused when struck with a belt
In re H.H.
237 N.C. App. 431 (2014)

A child is not dependent if placed with his non-removal parent, who the court finds is able to properly care for the child.

In re A.W.
237 N.C. App. 209 (2014)
A parent’s rights may be terminated for willfully leaving a child in a county department of social services custody for more than 12 months and not making progress to correct the conditions that led to his child being placed in DSS custody regardless of who was at fault for the child coming into care.
In re J.R.W.
237 N.C. App. 229 (2014)
A respondent parent's mental health diagnosis is not per se evidence of incompetence and does not necessarily mean there is a substantial question of a parent's competency or incompetency.
In re N.G.H.
237 N.C. App. 236 (2014)

Petitioners did not prove they had standing to file a TPR petition when the failure to attach or incorporate by reference the petition for adoption under G.S. Chapter 48. 

State v. Walton
237 N.C. App. 89 (2014)
Testimony describing the physical evidence observed by the treating experts was consistent with allegations of abuse is not opinion testimony regarding the victim’s credibility but is instead testimony of the experts’ diagnosis based on the experts’ examination.
In re L.R.S.
237 N.C. App 16 (2014)
A child may be adjudicated dependent due to any cause or condition when the court finds a reasonable probability that a parent's incapability to provide care or supervision will continue for the foreseeable future.
In re D.C.
236 N.C. App. 287 (2014)
It is not reversible error if the court does not use the exact statutory language when making findings of fact.
In re D.C.
236 N.C. App. 287 (2014)

Trial court changed permanent plan to adoption and ordered a termination of parental rights petition be filed without ordering cease reunification. Although the permanency planning order standing alone was deficient in its required statutory findings of fact regarding cease reunification, the termination of parental rights order cured that deficiency,

State v. Harris
236 N.C. App. 388 (2014)
G.S. 14-316.1 does not require a parental or caregiver relationship between the defendant and the juvenile. Instead, it requires defendant’s conduct to have placed the juvenile in a position where she did not receive proper care from a caretaker or was not provided necessary medical care.
In re S.T.B.
235 N.C. App. 290 (2014)
A child's guardian ad litem is the GAL program, not one specific individual. The TPR petition through the GAL attorney advocate and not the individual volunteer GAL is proper.
State v. Mosher, Jr.
235 N.C. App. 513 (2014)
Felony child abuse convictions based upon intentional infliction of serious bodily injury and serious bodily injury resulting from a willful act or grossly negligent omission that shows a reckless disregard for human life are not mutually exclusive when there are two separate successive acts.
In re S.T.B.
235 N.C. App. 290 (2014)
Because a child support order is a determination of a parent's ability to pay for his child's needs, TPR does not require the petitioner to demonstrate that the parent is able to pay child support during the period on which the TPR is based.
State v. King
235 N.C. App 287 (2014)
Testimony describing a common characteristic of children who are sexually abused as not initially disclosing or only partially disclosing the abuse is not opinion testimony as to the individual child victim’s credibility.
Dowd v. Johnson
235 N.C. App. 6 (2014)
Service of process by publication is void if due diligence did not occur first. A Defendant’s general appearance in a matter after the judgment is entered is not a waiver of the defense of insufficient service of process.
In re J.C.
235 N.C. App. 69 (2014)
Findings that NC is the home state are not required but the record must show that circumstances exist for NC to exercise jurisdiction under the UCCJEA.
In re B.S.O.
234 N.C. App. 706 (2014)
The court may conclude a ground not specifically alleged so long as the facts in the petition are sufficient to put a party on notice of that ground.
State v. Godley
234 N.C. App. 562 (2014)
There was no error when the court closed the courtroom during a 12-year old victim's testimony.
In re B.S.O.
234 N.C. App. 706 (2014)
The court may consider a parent’s conduct toward the child prior to their adjudication so as to assess the likelihood of future neglect for TPR. A mother's failure to address her mental health issues and complete the domestic violence program indicated a likelihood of future neglect, supporting TPR.
In re N.T.U.
234 N.C. App. 722 (2014)

A TPR based on dependency requires a finding that there is a reasonable probability that the parent's incapability of providing proper care and supervision will continue in the foreseeable future. There is no requirement that the court find the incapability will last until a date certain. Respondent's proposed child care placements were not appropriate.

Magazian v. Creagh
234 N.C. App. 511 (2014)
Appeal was untimely when plaintiff did not file notice of appeal within 30 days of the entry of judgment after receiving actual notice (via email) of the order within 3 days of when the judgment was entered.
In re B.S.O.
234 N.C. App. 706 (2014)
A parent does not abandon a child simply because he is incarcerated or deported. One single event will not prevent a court from concluding a parent willfully abandoned his child.
State v. McClamb
234 N.C. App. 753 (2014)
It is a Class D felony for any parent or legal guardian of a child younger than 16 to commit or allow to be committed any “sexual act” on the child. The term “sexual act,” found at G.S. 14-318.4(a2), includes vaginal intercourse.
In re N.T.U.
234 N.C. App. 722 (2014)
At the time DSS filed the petition to terminate respondent mother’s parental rights, NC had become the child’s home state. No other custody action had been filed in another state, thus giving NC initial child-custody jurisdiction under G.S. 50A-201.
In re N.T.U.
234 N.C. App. 722 (2014)
G.S. 50A-204 does not require the court to make written findings of the circumstances that must exist for the court to exercise temporary emergency jurisdiction under the UCCJEA.
In re J.D.
234 N.C. App. 342 (2014)
North Carolina court lacked subject matter jurisdiction under the UCCJEA because there was nothing in the record demonstrating that the court of Indiana determined it no longer had exclusive continuing jurisdiction.
In re S.D.W.
367 N.C. 386 (2014)
Unwed father, who had unprotected intercourse with the child's mother, did not grasp the opportunity to obtain notice of pregnancy and/or child's birth. As a result, his consent to the child's adoption was not required.
Nanny’s Korner Care Center v. N.C. DHHS
234 N.C. App. 51 (2014)
A county DSS substantiation is not dispositive when determining an administrative action to be imposed by DHHS on a licensed child care facility. Although a collaborative investigation occurs, and evidence is shared, that collaboration does not relieve DHHS of its affirmative duty to conduct its own investigation and determine if abuse or neglect occurred.
In re J.C.B.
233 N.C. App. 641 (2014)

Respondent father in one case has no standing to appeal the adjudication of the child named in a companion action as he is not a specified party enumerated in G.S. 7B-1002. Respondent mother did not timely appeal.

In re J.C.B.
233 N.C. App. 641 (2014)

In a neglect adjudication based on a child living in the home where another child was abused, the court's findings failed to address whether there was a substantial risk that the abuse or neglect might be repeated. As a result, the conclusion that the juveniles were neglected was not supported by the findings.

In re Adoption of Baby Boy
233 N.C. App. 493 (2014)
Administering an oath is a ministerial duty. If a notary is present to observe a mother who is executing a relinquishment make a vow of truthfulness to the adoption agency worker, the oath and relinquishment is valid. Failing to include the child's gender in a relinquishment does not void the relinquishment.
In re K.A.
233 N.C. App. 119 (2014)
Respondent mother's response to an objection preserved the issue for appeal.
In re K.A.
233 N.C. App. 119 (2014)
Collateral estoppel did not apply to an issue litigated in a Chapter 50 custody action that was also an issue at the adjudicatory hearing in a juvenile proceeding. Different burdens of proof apply.
In re D.H.
232 N.C. App. 217 (2014)
The court made findings of those best interest factors that were relevant. A lack of an adoptive placement is not a bar to a termination of parental rights, and a finding about the quality of the relationship between the child and proposed adoptive parent is not relevant.
In re T.H.
232 N.C. App. 16 (2014)
Visitation must be ordered unless the court finds the parent forfeited his or her right to visitation or that it was in the child’s best interests to deny visitation.
In re T.H.
232 N.C. App.16 (2014)
Adoption severs all parental rights of a biological parent such that the biological parent has no right to intervene in or appeal an order in an abuse, neglect, or dependency proceeding.
In re T.H.
232 N.C. App. 16 (2014)

By participating without objection in a disposition hearing that addressed a permanent plan, any lack of formal notice for a permanency planning hearing was waived.