Child Welfare Case Compendium

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Results: 713
Case Name & Citation Case Description
In re A.C.
2021-NCCOA-280
Acting inconsistently with constitutional rights must be found by clear and convincing evidence. Request for supreme court to address conflicting opinions about when parent waives appellate review of this issue.
In re A.C.
2021-NCCOA-280
Pending action for legislative amendment applied. Eliminate reunification requires G.S. 7B-906.2(b) and (d) findings.
In re J.K.F.
2021-NCSC-137
When there is a voluntary support agreement, court is not required to make findings of parent's income, assets, or expenses. VSA is evidence of an ability to pay. Location of willfulness is conclusions father than findings is not fatal.
In re A.A.M.
2021-NCSC-129
Findings support conclusion of willful abandonment. Judge has authority to determine witness credibility and draw/reject inference from the evidence when there is conflicting evidence.
In re T.T.
2021-NCSC-145
TPR affirmed; mother did not comply with any aspect of her case plan.
In re N.C.E.
2021-NCSC-141
Relative placement is not a priority under TPR statutes (unlike A/N/D statutes). Court did not abuse its discretion in determining TPR was in child's best interests.
In re L.G.G.
2021-NCSC-139
No abuse of discretion in BIC determination. Lack of adoptive placement is not a bar to TPR; child's behaviors were improving.
In re L.G.G.
2021-NCSC-139
Neglect affirmed. Compliance with a case plan does not preclude a TPR on neglect. Parents continued to deny responsibility and acknowledge concerns. Likelihood of repetition of neglect supported by the findings, which was supported by clear and convincing evidence.
In re J.B.
2021-NCSC-135
Court did not determine likelihood of future neglect based solely on father's lengthy probation but also on his failure to inquire about the child's wellbeing since his arrest up to the time of the TPR hearing.
In re J.B.
2021-NCSC-135
Likelihood of adoption is not required for a TPR (this is a private TPR with no potential second adoptive parent).
In re C.K.I.
2021-NCSC-131
TPR on abandonment affirmed.
In re W.K.
2021-NCSC-146
TPR affirmed. There was a likelihood of future neglect. Discussion of incarceration and father's ability to show interest in his son. Ground being listed in fact and not conclusion section of order was not prejudicial error.
In re M.E.S.
2021-NCSC-140
Private TPR on abandonment affirmed. Findings are supported by the evidence.
In re A.E.
2021-NCSC-130
TPR on ground of neglect affirmed. Discussion of findings (recitation of testimony, judicial notice of prior orders) and conclusion re: prior neglect and likelihood of future neglect discussed in this opinion.
In re S.C.C.
2021-NCSC-144
Unchallenged findings are binding and challenged findings were supported by the evidence. No abuse of discretion.
In re S.C.C.
2021-NCSC-144
No need to prove ability to pay when parent has a child support order. This opinion discusses stare decisis.
In re I.E.M.
2021-NCSC-133
Court did not apply a misapprehension of law re: time period of parent's progress given it overruled DSS objection about post-petition evidence. Judge is presumed to have disregarded incompetent evidence and mother did not show reliance on that evidence. Findings on all evidence presented is not required.
In re A.W.
2021-NCCOA-586
The findings do not support eliminating reunification and awarding guardianship. Discussion of parents acting inconsistently with their parental rights and required findings under G.S. 7B-906.2(b) and (d). Important factor was another child was born and remained in the home with the parents.
In re O.E.M.
2021-NCSC-120
TPR motion must be verified; failure to do so is a jurisdictional defect. TPR vacated.
In re Z.M.T.
2021-NCSC-121
Mother did not argue and cannot show prejudice on IAC claim. There is a dissent that would have remanded for further factfinding on counsel's performance.
In re B.R.L.
2021-NCSC-119
The evidence does not support the findings and the findings do not support the conclusion of willful abandonment. Dissent.
In re B.R.L.
2021-NCSC-119
There were no findings of the likelihood of future neglect.
In re W.C.T.
2021-NCCOA-559
No abuse of discretion when ordering 1 hour of supervised visits a week.
In re W.C.T.
2021-NCCOA-559
Mother waived right to appeal constitutional rights argument.
In re W.C.T.
2021-NCCOA-559
Abuse based on non-accidental, unexplained injuries affirmed. Findings supported reasonable inference respondents' were responsible for nonaccidental injuries.
In re W.C.T.
2021-NCCOA-559
Findings support conclusion of dependent juveniles.
In re W.C.T.
2021-NCCOA-559
Case plan involving proof of income and mental health remedy was reasonably related to conditions leading to children's adjudication.
In re M.R.F.
2021-NCSC-111
Reversing TPR. No evidence child was born out of wedlock or that father did not take any of the 5 actions enumerated in G.S. 7B-1111(a)(5).
In re M.Y.P.
2021-NCSC-113
Father did not preserve issue involving exclusion of his testimony when he failed to make an offer of proof. Dispositional phase gives court greater discretion to receive evidence. There is no burden of proof for any party at dispositional stage. Application of clear, cogent, and convincing evidence standard did not prejudice father.
In re M.Y.P.
2021-NCSC-113
Challenged findings that are not supported by the evidence are disregarded on appeal. Parent's failure to make progress on case plan is indicative of likelihood of future neglect. Juvenile's adjudication as neglected shows prior neglect. TPR affirmed.
In re K.B.
2021-NCSC-108
No abuse of discretion in findings re: likelihood of adoption and parent's bond with child.
In re K.B.
2021-NCSC-108
TPR on neglect affirmed. Evidence supports findings of risk of harm to children and likelihood of future neglect related to mother's substance use and mental health.
In re B.J.H.
2021-NCSC-103
Time period to assess reasonable progress is up to the adjudicatory hearing. G.S. 7B-1111(a)(2) is not precluded as a ground if parent refuses to sign case plan or court does not order specific remedial steps for parent to take. Court has authority to determine witness credibility, give weight to evidence, and draw reasonable inferences. Discussion of judicial notice of PPO included in this opinion.
In re D.T.H.
2021-NCSC-106
Current neglect by abandonment does not required the 2-part test of prior neglect and likelihood of future neglect. Findings were insufficient to support conclusion regarding neglect by abandonment/abandonment. Findings recited testimony and did not resolve material conflict in evidence. Reversed and remanded.
In re D.T.H.
2021-NCSC-106
No evidence of lack of alternative child care. TPR on dependency reversed.
In re M.R.F.
2021-NCSC-111
Court must announce the clear, cogent, and convincing standard in its findings of fact at a TPR adjudication - either in open court or in its written TPR order.
In re D.C.
2021-NCSC-104
Relying on stare decision and In re S.E., 373 N.C. 360 (2020), parent has an inherent duty to support their child. Lack of notice is not a defense re: willfulness on the grounds under G.S. 7B-1111(a)(3).
In re M.R.F.
2021-NCSC-111
Placement outside the home for 12 or more months immediately preceding the filing of the TPR petition must be pursuant to a court order. TPR reversed for no evidence or findings regarding a court order placing the child outside of the home.
In re D.C.
2021-NCSC-104
At adjudication stage of TPR, parent's constitutional rights over child's best interest prevail. At disposition, child's best interests is the polar star.
In re M.R.F.
2021-NCSC-111
G.S. 7B-1111(a)(4) applies when a parent has a court order of custody/agreement and a child support order/agreement. Here, petitioner was grandmother. No evidence mother had a court order/agreement for custody and child support.
In re D.J.
2021-NCSC-105
This opinions discusses ICWA notice requirements and the court's compliance with ensuring DSS made due diligence to notify tribes and BIA. Lack of notice was cured at post-TPR hearing, rejecting parent's argument that the court lacked subject matter jurisdiction in the TPR.
In re D.J.
2021-NCSC-105
Court did not err in denying mother's motion to continue TPR adjudicatory hearing. Offer of proof of potential witness testimony was vague. No prejudice.
In re S.C.L.R.
2021-NCSC-101
  • G.S. 7B-1111(a)(7) authorizes a TPR when a parent willfully abandons their child for 6 months immediately preceding the filing of the TPR. Willfulness is a question of fact.
In re M.R.J.
2021-NCSC-112
Court did not misapprehend the law or abuse its discretion when determining TPR was in child's best interests despite mother having executed a specific relinquishment.
In re L.H.
2021-NCSC -110
TPR on neglect affirmed. Findings were supported by the evidence and were not based on speculation regarding the likelihood of repetition of neglect. Appellate court will not reweigh the evidence.
In re M.J.R.,
2021-NCSC-112
Court had subject matter jurisdiction in underlying neglect action to give DSS director standing to file TPR petition. Discussion of "director," venue, and verification of petition when child was placed in out-of-state safety placement during assessment.
In re M.J.R.,
2021-NCSC-112
Significant connection/substantial evidence prong met under UCCJEA when child had no home state at time underlying neglect petition was filed. This opinion is an appeal of a TPR raising subject matter jurisdiction (and best interests).
In re T.M.B.
2021-NCSC-114
Evidence supported findings that mother had an inability or unwillingness to establish a safe home. Prior TPR was not challenged.
In re K.J.E.
2021-NCSC-109
Findings were insufficient because they did not address father's conduct during the relevant 6-month period. Dispositional findings are not considered by the appellate court on an appeal of an adjudication. Evidence was presented; vacated and remanded.
In re J.R.
2021-NCCOA-491
Guardianship affirmed. Evidence supported findings and findings supported conclusion that mother acted inconsistently with her parental rights, guardian understood legal significance of appointment, and reunification efforts would be unsuccessful or inconsistent with the children's health or safety.
In re J.R.
2021-NCCOA-491
Order of 4 hours supervised visitation a week does not unambiguously set out frequency and duration.
In re A.L.
2021-NCCOA-452
Appeal under G.S. 7B-1001(a)(5) dismissed without prejudice as being premature.
In re A.L.
2021-NCSC-92
Record does not show court made required inquiry of each participant as to whether there was reason to know the child was an Indian child under ICWA. Child is member of Lumbee tribe, but inquiry must still be made.
In re Z.G.J.
2021-NCSC-102
Evidence did not include mother's circumstances at time of TPR hearing such that likelihood of repetition of neglect was not proved.
In re A.L.
2021-NC-92
TPR on failure to make reasonable progress re: substance use affirmed.
In re Z.G.J.
2021-NCSC-102
Findings do not address the determinative 6-month time period under G.S. 7B-1111(a)(3). There is a dissent in part (4-3)
In re Z.G.J.
2021-NCSC-102
There was no evidence about mother's progress up to the time of the TPR hearing.
In re M.J.M.
2021-NCSC-100
Subject matter jurisdiction in a TPR does not require the action be filed in the same county where there is an underlying A/N/D action.
In re Z.G.J.
2021-NCSC-102
There was no evidence of the circumstances at the time of the TPR hearing. Court could not conclude parent did not have ability to provide proper care and supervision.
In re M.J.M.
2021-NCSC-100
Lack of GAL in TPR was not preserved for appellate review.
In re A.P.W.
2021-NCSC-93
Findings satisfy the concerns of G.S. 7B-906.1(d)(3), 7B-906.2(b), 7B-906.2(d)(1)-(4). Findings under G.S. 7B-906.2(c) and DSS efforts were made. Any limitations on father's visitation was conditioned by court order and not DSS re: the reasonable of DSS's efforts.
In re A.S.D.
2021-NCSC-94
Findings were supported by the evidence and support the conclusion. Court had authority to determine mother's recent progress was not reasonable given historical facts of the case.
In re A.P.W.
2021-NCSC-93
Voluntary support agreement (VSA) for child support is treated like an order. Findings of mother's VSA and failure to pay anything toward cost of child's care is sufficient to conclude ground under G.S. 7B-1111(a)(3) exists.
In re K.N.
2021-NCSC-98
Explicit findings demonstrating jurisdiction under the UCCJEA are not required, rejecting parent's argument that G.S. 7B-1101 requires such a finding. The record must reflect the circumstances for UCCJEA jurisdiction exist.
In re S.C.L.R.
2021-NCSC-101
Petition complied with G.S. 7B-1104(2) regarding standing of petitioners.
In re A.C.
2021-NCSC-91
TPR on neglect affirmed. Discusses what constitutes a finding, appellate review of findings, and judicial notice. Mother's progress was extremely limited and supporting finding that there was a likelihood of repetition of neglect.
In re Z.G.J.
2021-NCSC-102
When reading the allegations in the petition as a whole, the DSS social worker acted as the director's authorized representative when verifying the TPR petition. Affirming on standing.
In re M.A.
2021-NCSC-99
TPR on neglect affirmed. Examines likelihood of future of neglect. Issues involve housing and DV.
In re Z.G.J.
2021-NCSC-102
Trial court held a proper adjudicatory hearing when testimony by DSS social worker reaffirmed under oath the allegations in the TPR petition. Affirmed in part.
In re A.D.
2021-NCCOA-398
"Services Needed" is treated the same as "substantiated." DSS was required to file petition when respondent refused to comply with in-home services plan. Evidence supports adjudication of neglected juveniles.
In re E.A.C.
2021-NCCOA-298
Findings under GS 7B-906.2(b) and (d) were not made before eliminating reunification as a permanent plan. Court did not abuse its discretion in not delineating components of mother's case plan in an order. Mother waived right to notice of a permanency planning hearing.
In re N.Z.B.
2021-NCCOA-345 (2021)
Order vacated and remanded for application of clear and convincing evidence standard re: parent acting inconsistently with her constitutionally protected status as a parent.
In re B.R.W.
2021-NCCOA-343
Guardianship affirmed; there is a dissent in part. Discussion of parent acting inconsistently with their constitutional status (affirmed), separate determination of parental unfitness (reversed), and parent preserving the issues for appeal.
In re H.P.
2021-NCCOA-299
Findings were insufficient and not supported by competent evidence to support neglect or dependency adjudications. Discussion of findings, ultimate findings, conclusions of law. Reversed for dismissal. There is a dissent. Reasonable efforts also discussed.
In re B.H.
2021-NCCOA-297
There was sufficient competent evidence to support verification that both guardians understood the legal significance of their appointment.
In re M.S.E.
2021-NCSC-76
TPR on neglect affirmed. Findings were supported by clear and convincing evidence and support conclusion of likelihood of repetition of neglect. Issues involved unstable housing/homelessness, mental health, and substance use by mother.
In re M.S.E.
2021-NCSC-76
G.S. 7B-1110(a) does not require findings about dispositional alternatives the court considered. No abuse of discretion.
In re I.J.W.
2021-NCSC-73
Father's refusal to cooperate with DSS, complete the services before he could exercise visitation, and failure to modify the visitation order during the determinative 6-month time period support the willful abandonment ground. His post-TPR-motion behavior is not a bar to the TPR.
In re E.S.
2021-NCSC-72
No abuse of discretion in best interests determination. Opinion looks at child's consent to adoption, bond with parent, and possible relative placement.
In re B.S.
2021-NCSC-71
No ineffective assistance of counsel when attorney did not advise father to execute AOP or legally establish paternity. This is an inherit duty and attorney's alleged failure is not prejudicial and would not have changed outcome of TPR on 7B-1111(a)(5).
In re J.E.E.R.
2021-NCSC-74
TPR affirmed on failure to pay reasonable cost of care. Obligation to pay exists regardless of parent's wealth or poverty.
In re T.A.M.
2021-NCSC-77
No abuse of discretion in granting TPR. Competent evidences supported the findings. Discussion of parental bon and dispositional alternatives.
In re T.A.M.
2021-NCSC-77
4-3 opinion, affirming TPR and determining no abuse of discretion when court granted father's motion to withdraw.
In re M.S.E.
2021-NCSC-76
Court did not abuse its discretion in not conducting inquiry into mother's competency even though she had an intellectual disability warranting services and supports.
In re K.P.
2021-NCCOA-268
Findings required by statute that are not made is reversible error. Remand for findings addressing eliminating reunification, ceasing further reviews, and waiving further hearings. There is a dissent.
Warren County ex rel. Glenn v. Garrelts
2021-NCCOA-275
Paternity affects a substantial right requiring the application of lex loci when multiple states of involved. Artificial insemination and birth occurred in VA. VA law should have applied. Remanded.
In re I.K.
2021-NCSC-60
PPO granting guardianship affirmed. Findings regarding substance use, housing instability, and domestic violence were sufficient to support conclusion father acted inconsistently with his parental rights. There is a dissent, which in part focuses on housing.
In re M.J.R.B.
2021-NCCS-62
No abuse of discretion in denying father's request for a new attorney and Rule 17 GAL
In re M.J.R.B.
2021-NCSC-62
Unchallenged findings sufficient for conclusion of ground under GS 7B-1111(a)(2) for 3 older juveniles. Youngest juvenile was only outside the home for 9 months.
In re M.J.R.B.
2021-NCSC-62
Facts were insufficient for dependency ground, vacated and remanded.
In re K.M.
___ N.C. App. ___ (June 1, 2021)
No abuse of discretion when court imposed temporary suspension of supervised visitation due to supervised visitation center's temporary closure based on COVID-19. GS 7B-905.1(a) allows court to set conditions for temporary visit suspension.
In re M.S.A.
___ N.C. ___ (April 23, 2021)
TPR on willful abandonment affirmed. Father cannot use his incarceration as a shield.
In re D.A.A.R.
___ N.C. ___ (April 23, 2021)
The findings of mother's sustained reasonable progress do not support the court's conclusion that she failed to make reasonable progress to correct the conditions that led to the child's removal. TPR reversed.
In re T.M.L.
___ N.C. ___ (April 23, 2021)
Although the trial court applied the wrong time period when examining the parent's failure to make reasonable progress, it examined father's actions and made findings up to the date of the TPR hearing. Poverty is not an element of the ground such that an affirmative finding about poverty is not required. TPR affirmed.
In re A.M.
___ N.C. ___ (April 23, 2021)
Although mother made progress on housing, she did not make reasonable progress on domestic violence and substance abuse issues, which were issues that led to the children's removal from her care. TPR affirmed.
In re A,W,
___ N.C. ___ (April 23, 2021)
Neglect adjudication affirmed for newborn whose sibling died as a result of suspected abuse and neglect. TPR and A/N/D consolidated in this case.
In re A.M.
___ N.C. ___ (April 23, 2021)
The court has discretion to give greater weight to G.S. 7B-1110(a) factors than the child-parent bond.
In re A.W.
___ N.C. ___ (April 23, 2021)
Dependency affirmed based on death of sibling and refusal to believe it was intentional by possible caregivers and mother. There's also a neglect adjudication as well as consolidated TPR in this case.
In re A.W.
___ N.C. ___ (April 23, 2021)
Consolidated TPR and A/N/D adjudication and disposition put mother on notice that permanency will be at issue. GS 7B-901(c) aggravating factor found for initial dispositional hearing.
In re M.J.B. III
___ N.C. ___(April 23, 2021)
Findings supported determination of likelihood of future neglect. TPR affirmed.
In re A.W.
___ N.C. ___ (April 23, 2021)
TPR on neglect affirmed based on past neglect and likelihood of future neglect based on death of sibling. This case consolidated the A/N/D adjudication and disposition with the TPR hearing.
In re L.R.L.B.
___ N.C. ___ (April 23, 2021)
This is an appeal of a PPO together with a TPR. This opinion discusses the language of G.S. 7B-1001(a2), addressing insufficient findings in a PPO, supreme court precedent, and the appropriate remedy of remand.
In re J.M.
___ N.C. ___ (April 23, 2021)
Vacate TPR when the court exceeded its statutory limitations in exercising jurisdiction in a TPR while an appeal of a remand order in an underlying neglect action was pending.
In re M.L.B.
___ N.C. ___ (April 23, 2021)
TPR reversed and remanded. Court must comply with the ICWA inquiry of each participant as to whether they know or have reason to know the child is an Indian child.
In re J.E.
___ N.C. ___ (April 23, 2021)
No abuse of discretion in denying motion to continue TPR when parent not present. That absence alone is not a violation of due process. Father did not meet his burden of showing extraordinary circumstances for a continuance required by G.S. 7B-1109.
In re J.E.
___ N.C ___ (April 23, 2021)
The findings supporting the ground of neglect for TPR were not based solely on father's incarceration.
In re N.B.
___ N.C. ___ (April 23, 2021)
TPR on the ground of neglect affirmed for both parents. Discussion of findings related to past neglect and likelihood of future neglect when both parents had been incarcerated.
In re L.G.A.
___ N.C. App. ___ (April 20, 2021)
Mother was not entitled to a continuance based on her argument that she was denied due process rights against self-incrimination with a pending criminal charge. Discussion of GS 7B-803.
In re L.G.A.
___ N.C. App. ___ (April 20, 2021)
When ordered a parent to pay supervised visitation, the court must make findings about a parent's present, and not past, ability.
In re L.G.A.
___ N.C. App. ___ (April 20, 2021)
This opinion discusses judicial notice. The court improperly applied judicial notice. The other findings support the court's conclusion to award custody to father.
In re G.B.
___ N.C. ___ (April 16, 2021)
The BIC standard of review is best interests. De novo review is rejected.
In re G.B.
___ N.C. ___ (April 16, 2021)
Court properly considered father's limitations in making progress to correct the conditions due to his incarceration, which including considering his behavior further limited his opportunities to engage in services and delayed his release date. There is a dissent.
In re J.M.
2021-NCCOA-92
This opinion reverses and remands a PPO that eliminates reunification as a permanent plan. It discusses reasonable efforts, constitutional rights, GS. 7B-906.2(b) and (d) findings. Evidence does not support the findings to support the conclusion. It distinguishes In re Y.Y.E.T.
In re S.R.J.T.
___ N.C. App. ___ (April 6, 2021)
Neglect adjudication affirmed.
In re S.R.J.T.
___ N.C. App. ___ (April 6, 2021)
Mother waived findings on her constitutional rights when guardianship granted. Court did not make all the GS 7B-906.1(n) findings.
In re S.D.
___ N.C. App. ___ (April 6, 2021)
The evidence does not support the findings, which do not support elimination reunification/reunification efforts when granting guardianship and waiving further reviews. This opinion discusses difficulty in securing housing and DSS's failure to make reasonable efforts. It is reversible error to not make statutory required findings (GS 7B-906.2(d), -906.1(n)).
In re J.M.
___ N.C. App. ___(April 6, 2021)
GS 7B-905.1(d) requirements to advise parties of right to review is not required when the court is holding periodic permanency planning hearings.
In re B.T.J.
___ N.C. ___ (March 19, 2021)
Mother's recent progress on her case plan in the 4 months before the TPR hearing was not enough to rectify the issues that led to the child's prior adjudication of neglect based on her substance use. TPR on neglect affirmed.
In re C.R.L.
___ N.C. ___ (March 19, 2021)
Father did not petition for writ of mandamus during 33-month delay in holding TPR hearing. He missed his opportunity to remedy statutory time violation. Appeal is not the proper remedy as it only furthers the delay.
In re L.N.G.
___ N.C. ___ (March 19, 2021)
Findings regarding mother's failure to make reasonable progress to correct conditions re: domestic violence were supported by the evidence. TPR affirned.
In re J.S.
___ N.C. ___ (March 19, 2021)
This opinion discusses likelihood of repetition of neglect and a parent's lengthy incarceration. TPR affirmed.
In re H.A.J.
___ N.C. ___ (March 19, 2021)
TPR on neglect and BIC affirmed. LIkelihood of future neglect determination was supported by the evidence and was not defeated by recent progress mother started making after TPR filed. No abuse of discretion in determining TPR was in BIC.
In re H.A.J.
___ N.C. ___ (March 19, 2021)
Elimination of Reunification as permanent plan affirmed. Mother was on notice of potential change when hearing was designated as a permanency planning hearing. No violation of due process. The findings of GS 7B-906.2 were made even though precise statutory language not used.
In re G.G.M.
___ N.C. ___ (March 19, 2021)
Trial court determines credibility of testimony, the weight of the evidence, and the inferences to be drawn. Here, father's conduct over 5 years supported court's conclusion that he willfully abandoned children during the relevant 6-month period.
In re G.G.M.
___ N.C. ___ (March 19, 2021)
No abuse of discretion in determining TPR was in BIC. Likelihood of adoption is not required. This case is distinguishable from Bost v. Van Nortwick, 117 N.C. App. 1 (1994). Father did not prove ineffective assistance of counsel.
In re A.M.L.
___ N.C. ___ (March 19, 2021)
Findings supported conclusion that mother failed to make reasonable progress on her case plan involving substance use.
In re I.R.M.B.
___ N.C. ___ (March 19, 2021)
Affirmed TPR on willful abandonment based on unchallenged findings and father's acts of domestic violence and not pursuing a custody case when protective order prohibiting contact in place.
In re J.C.-B.
___ N.C. App. ___ (March 16, 2021)
Permanency planning order of custody to non-parent requires findings that parent was unfit or acted inconsistently with their constitutional rights.
In re J.C.-B.
___ N.C. App. ___ (March 16, 2021)
Opinion discusses verification of custodian's understanding of legal significance of placement.
In re J.C.-B.
___ N.C. App. ___ (March 16, 2021)
Discussing how efforts to reunify were not reasonable efforts.
In re J.C.-B.
___ N.C. App. ___ (March 16, 2021)
Older juvenile's express preference should be given weight when considering visitation. GAL did not comply with duty to convey express preference to court.
In re R.P.
___ N.C. App. ___ (March 16, 2021)
This opinion discusses Rule 63 - the role of a substitute judge and held the actions were more than ministerial such that the orders were a nullity. It further discusses stipulations of fact and what may be relied upon for an adjudication.
In re Q.P.W.
___ N.C. ___ (March 12, 2021)
Minor parent who was also in DSS custody and ages out. This opinion and the dissent discuss the mother's failure to make reasonable progress under the circumstances to correct the conditions that led to the juvenile's removal. TPR affirmed.
In re N.P.
___ N.C. ___ (March 12, 2021)
The opinion affirms a TPR that is challenged for lack of subject matter jurisdiction. It addresses 7B-1101, the UCCJEA, the parent's age of minority, and transfer of the child's custody to her parent's resident state of VA.
In re N.P.
___ N.C. ___ (March 12, 2021)
In discussing subject matter jurisdiction under G.S. 7B-1101, there is an analysis of home state status and temporary emergency jurisdiction in this opinion affirmed a TPR order.
In re Z.J.W.
___ N.C. ___ (March 12, 2021)
The opinion discussed findings that are not supported by the evidence and reverses a TPR on abandonment under G.S. 7B-1111(a)(1) and (a)(7).
In re Z.J.W.
___ N.C. ___ (March 12, 2021)
This opinion reverses a TPR on abandonment and vacates and remands on neglect based in past neglect and likelihood of future neglect. It discusses findings.
In re S.R.F.
___ N.C. ___ (Feb. 5, 2021)
Errors in the challenged findings were harmless given related unchallenged findings. The findings support the conclusion of a likelihood of future neglect. TPR affirmed.
In re C.L.H.
___ N.C. ___ (Feb. 5, 2021)
4-3 TPR opinion, reversing in part, and vacating and remanding in part. This opinion discusses the need for evidence and findings about the existence of an enforceable child support order the year before the TPR petition is filed.
In re C.L.H.
___ N.C. ___ (Feb. 5, 2021)
TPR neglect adjudication reversed based on findings that were not supported by the evidence and the findings do not address risk of harm to the juvenile or the likelihood of future neglect.
In re C.L.H.
___ N.C. ___ (Feb. 5, 2021)
TPR on dependency reversed. No evidence or findings of respondent's inability to provide proper care/supervision at the time of the TPR hearing.
In re J.E.B.
___ N.C. ___ (Feb. 5, 2021)
This opinion interprets the role of the respondent's GAL under G.S. 7B-1101.1(d) and determines there is no violation of that statute when the GAL assisted the court-appointed attorney in presenting respondent's case to the court. There is a dissent.
In re J.M.
___ N.C. App. ___ (Dec. 31, 2020)
This opinion addresses the role of a substitute judge on remand under Rule 63. It also addresses an argument that substitute judge resolved an evidentiary conflict. An appeal should not be morphed into a question of culpability of the parent. Adjudication affirmed.
In re A.S.
___ N.C. App. ___ (Dec. 31, 2020)
Findings are unsupported by the evidence. The conclusion of law that parent acted inconsistently with her constitutionally protected rights is based on unsupported findings and is error.
In re R.D.
376 N.C. 244 (2020)
4-3 opinion addresses best interests determination, where TPR was dismissed. Dismissal is affirmed. Discussion of GAL for child in a dual role and Rules of Professional Responsibility; no absolute right to cross-examination at disposition of GAL; and findings by court with discretion to give weight to the evidence, determine credibility, and draw inferences. One finding was not supported by the evidence and prejudicial requiring a remand.
In re B.L.H.
376 N.C. 118 (2020)
This opinion discusses statutory construction of G.S. 7B-1109(f). The court does not err by stating the standard of proof (clear, cogent, and convincing evidence) at the open TPR hearing but not in the written TPR order.
In re J.J.H.
376 N.C. 161 (2020)
The evidence and findings support the likelihood of future neglect. This 54 page opinion addresses finances, budgeting, housing, parenting skills, ability to respond to frustration, mental health treatment, and responding to a complex schedule to address the children's mental health needs. The TPR ground is found. There is a dissent addressing parent's substantial compliance with the case plan and poverty.
In re J.J.H.
376 N.C. 161 (2020)
The court considered each individual child's circumstances including the bond with mother and with each other. There was no abuse of discretion in determining TPR was in the children's best interests.
In re W.K.
376 N.C. 269 (2020)
Discussion of the role of the parent's GAL in a TPR. Respondent failed to show reversible error by his GAL. TPR affirmed
In re A.L.L.
376 N.C. 99 (2020)
G.S. 7B-1101 authorizes a TPR to be filed in a different county than where a pending A/N/D action exists. The court had subject matter jurisdiction to hear the TPR.
In re A.L.L.
376 N.C. 99 (2020)
This opinion interprets G.S. 7B-1111(a)(6) and holds a permanent guardian, regardless of whether the parent identified that person, is an appropriate alternative child care arrangement such that dependency cannot be found for purposes of a TPR. This opinions differs from prior Court of Appeals opinions. There is a dissent.
In re A.L.L.
376 N.C. 99 (2020)
Mother's severe mental illness and the resulting behaviors were not willful conduct on mother's part. TPR on willful abandonment reversed. There is a dissent.
In re K.M.W.
376 N.C. 194 (2020)
This opinion reserves and remands for a new hearing a TPR based on mother not knowingly and voluntarily waiving her right to counsel and by the court allowing her privately retained attorney to withdraw. A discussion of what inquiries the court is required to make is included in this opinion. There is a dissent.
In re A.J.L.H.
___ N.C. App. ___ (Dec. 15, 2020)
A stepparent is a caretaker and does not have standing to appeal.
In re A.J.L.H.
___ N.C. App. ___ (Dec. 15, 2020)
The court relied on inadmissible hearsay, which does not support the abuse adjudication under serious physical injury or cruel or grossly inappropriate discipline.
In re A.J.L.H.
___ N.C. App. ___ (Dec. 15, 2020)
Neglect adjudication reversed and petition dismissed. The trial court relied solely on an adjudication of a sibling without any finding about risk of harm to these juveniles.
In re A.J.L.H.
___ N.C. App. ___ (Dec. 15, 2020)
Denial of visitation was an abuse of discretion.
In re Q.M.
___ N.C. App. ___ (Dec. 15, 2020)
Discussion of signatures on notice of appeal by attorney for mother and her Rule 17 GAL.
In re Q.M.
___ N.C. App. ___ (Dec. 15, 2020)
The court may consider post-petition evidence of paternity when determining whether a child is dependent.
In re D.C.
___ N.C. App. ___ (Dec. 15, 2020)
The required findings under G.S. 7B-906.2(b) and (d) were not made when the court eliminated reunification as a permanent plan and ceased reunification efforts.
In re R.L.D.
375 N.C. 838 (2020)
Private TPR on basis of neglect is affirmed. Review of facts that support conclusion of past neglect (without DSS involvement) and likelihood of future neglect.
In re K.D.C.
375 N.C. 784 (2020)
TPR reversed. Discussion of the likelihood of repetition of neglect and mother's actions to work case plan while incarcerated.
In re A.L.S.
375 N.C. 708 (2020)
TPR on ground of dependency affirmed. Mother's continued extended incarceration supports the court's conclusion that she is incapable of providing care and supervision. Her release date ranging from 22 -42 months after the TPR hearing is the foreseeable future and the trial court's finding of the later, rather than earlier date, does not prejudice mother.
In re D.M.
375 N.C. 761 (2020)
This opinion has an extensive discussion about the evidence and findings regarding the parents' extensive substance abuse and domestic violence. The findings support the determination of the likelihood of neglect. TPR is affirmed.
In re K.P.-S.T.
375 N.C. 797 (2020)
TPR on ground of neglect affirmed. Unchallenged findings support substantial risk of harm to the juvenile and the likelihood of future neglect.
In re N.K.
375 N.C. 805 (2020)
The court did not abuse its discretion in failing to conduct an inquiry into the need for a GAL for respondent mother.
In re T.N.C.
375 N.C. 849 (2020)
Mother's attorney's actions of a brief cross examination of the one adjudication witness and a conciliatory closing argument was not disparaging of mother such that the performance was deficient or would prejudiced mother such that there was a reasonable probability of a different result.
In re N.K.
375 N.C. 805 (2020)
Opinion affirmed TPR on neglect ground. Willfulness is not required. Judicial notice of prior orders was proper. Rights were not terminated solely on the basis of poverty.
In re C.A.H.
375 N.C. 750 (2020)
The court determines the weight and credibility of the evidence. The court's findings for the determinative 2-year period, time before that period, and time after the TPR petition was filed support the conclusion of willful abandonment in this private TPR.
In re N.K.
375 N.C. 805 (2020)
The court is not required to consider mother's poverty or mental health or an alternative disposition when making a best interest determination at the TPR. No abuse of discretion.
In re N.K.
375 N.C. 805 (2020)
Remanded to determine whether the ICWA notice provisions were complied with and whether the child is an Indian child.
In re B.E.
375 N.C. 730 (2020)
TPR affirmed. Findings and evidence supported a likelihood of neglect. Substance abuse, compliance with a case plan, and the nexus for mental health treatment to address past trauma are discussed.
In re B.E.
375 N.C. 730 (2020)
No abuse of discretion in determining TPR was in the 15 year old's best interest and in finding it was also in his best interests to waive his consent to his adoption. Father did not preserve issue of the juvenile's statutory due process rights.
In re Z.O.G.I.
375 N.C. 858 (2020)
A best interests determination to grant a TPR but order co-parenting between the foster/prospective adoptive parents and the parent whose rights are being terminated is a misapprehension of law. Remanded for application of correct legal standard.
In re Z.O.G.I.
375 N.C. 858 (2020)
The court determined weight and credibility of the evidence. The unchallenged findings support the conclusion that father made minimal progress in his case plan - a plan he had notice of through the court orders that required him to comply with the case plan.
In re A.K.O.
375 N.C. 698 (2020)
This opinion discusses the best interests determination as it relates to an older juvenile and adoption vs. guardianship. It also distinguishes the analysis of factors for a younger juvenile vs. an older juvenile. TPR Affirmed to younger juvenile; vacated and remanded to older juvenile.
In re Q.B.
375 N.C. 826 (2020)
This opinion discusses whether a court is required to sua sponte make an inquiry into a parent's incompetency for purposes of a Rule 17 GAL. In this case the parent was adjudicated incompetent and appointed a guardian of the person under Ch. 35A. The court in the TPR case did not abuse its discretion in not conducting an inquiry.
In re K.D.C.
375 N.C. 784 (2020)
TPR reversed. Discussion of the likelihood of repetition of neglect and mother's actions to work case plan while incarcerated.
In re K.D.C.
375 N.C. 784 (2020)
TPR under G.S. 7B-1111(a)(2) reversed. Discussion of incarceration and mother's ability and efforts to comply with her case plan.
In re A.M.O.
375 N.C. 717 (2020)
The standard of review for best interests is an abuse of discretion and is not de novo. A strong bond between a parent-child is only one factor for the court to consider, and the court determines how much weight to give the factors.
In re K.D.C.
375 N.C. 784 (2020)
TPR on dependency reversed because there was no evidence or findings about the lack of an appropriate alternative child care arrangement.
In re K.S.
___ N.C. App. ___ (Dec. 1, 2020)
This is an appeal by the juvenile’s guardians of a permanency planning order that terminates their guardianship and focuses on the district court’s lack of compliance with a prior appeal and the mandate resulting from it. There are two separate neglect actions for the same juvenile that exist simultaneously.
In re S.M.
375 N.C. 673 (2020)
There was no abuse of discretion in determining best interests to TPR. This case is distinguishable from In re J.A.O. (juvenile with severe mental health issues). Some findings were not supported by competent evidence including the failure to admit the GAL report or have the GAL testify.
In re R.L.O.
375 N.C. 655 (2020)
The court did not abuse its discretion in not taking additional evidence on remand. The new findings support the conclusion of neglect.
In re R.L.O.
375 N.C. 655 (2020)
The court did not abuse its discretion in not taking additional evidence on remand. Father did not present a forecast of evidence of current circumstances the court should consider for the best interests determination but instead speculated new evidence was needed.
In re K.S.-D.F.
375 N.C. 626 (2020)
DSS had standing to file TPR petition. The court had jurisdiction to enter a nonsecure custody order on a motion of DSS in an action where the petition was file in 2008 since the court retained jurisdiction in the action.
In re K.S.-D.F.
375 N.C. 626 (2020)
The standard of review of BIC is an abuse of discretion and not de novo. Evidence supports the finding of the likelihood of adoption. Case is distinguished from In re J.A.O.
In re D.L.A.D.
375 N.C. 565 (2020)
The findings support the court's conclusion that there is a likelihood of neglect. TPR affirmed. There is a dissent.
In re K.C.T.
375 N.C. 592 (2020)
A Ch. 50 order without juvenile court involvement is not a court order removing the child for purposes of G.S. 7B-1111(a)(2).
In re K.H.
375 N.C. 610 (2020)
The 12-month period of willfully leaving a child in foster care or placement outside the home under G.S. 7B-1111(a)(2) does not include a period of time when the minor parent and the juvenile were placed together in the same foster home because there was no separation between the parent and juvenile. TPR reversed. There is a dissent.
In re K.C.T.
375 N.C. 592 (2020)
There was no evidence or findings about a lack of an appropriate alternative child care arrangement. TPR on dependency ground reversed. There is a dissent.
In re A.S.M.R.
375 N.C. 539 (2020)
Findings demonstrating jurisdiction under the UCCJEA are not required but the record must reflect jurisdiction exists.
In re K.H.
375 N.C. 610 (2020)
TPR on failure to pay reasonable portion of care reversed for insufficient facts. This is a 4-3 decision. Dissent in part addresses the appropriate remedy as remand, not reversal. Dissent further determined facts were sufficient.
In re K.C.T.
375 N.C. 592 (2020)
The TPR for neglect discusses abandonment and likelihood of repetition of neglect and mother's disability. TPR is reversed. There is a dissent.
In re C.B.
375 N.C. 556 (2020)
The court did not abuse its discretion in determining a TPR was in this child's best interests even though he had significant mental health issues. The opinion discusses the bond with the parent, likelihood of adoption, barriers to adoption, and the child's consent to adoption.
In re K.H.
375 N.C. 610 (2020)
There were no findings addressing the second prong of dependency (lack of an adequate alternative child care arrangement) such that the findings were insufficient to support the TPR ground. In a 4-3 opinion, the dissents focus identify the remedy as remand and not reversal.
In re K.C.T.
375 N.C. 592 (2020)
TPR reversed and remanded to address willfulness prong when findings identify other possible factors for mother's conduct, including her disability. There is a dissent.
In re O.W.D.A.
375 N.C. 645 (2020)
The TPR based on neglect was affirmed. It involves an incarcerated parent and discusses past neglect (collateral estoppel) and the likelihood of future neglect.
In re A.H.F.S.
375 N.C. 503 (2020)
Findings are sufficient to support conclusion that parents each willfully failed to make reasonable progress to correct the conditions that led to their children's removal under G.S. 7B-1111(a)(2). The findings are supported by clear and convincing evidence. Mother is collaterally estopped from challenging conditions of removal.
In re E.C.
375 N.C. 581 (2020)
The TPR is affirmed on the ground of failure to make reasonable progress. This case discusses the case plan and determines there was a nexus with the case plan and reason for the children's removal.
In re A.H.F.S.
375 N.C. 503 (2020)
The court determines the weight to give to the dispositional factors, including the bond between the parent and child when determining best interests. The child's best interests remain paramount. There was no abuse of discretion.
In re N.M.H.
375 N.C. 637 (2020)
Although the order did not use the term "willful," the findings when read in context show the court used the proper standard to TPR based on willful abandonment.
In re A.J.P.
375 N.C. 516 (2020)
There was no abuse of discretion in denying the father's request to continue the TPR hearing beyond 90 days. See G.S. 7B-1109(d).
In re A.S.T.
375 N.C. 547 (2020)
TPR affirmed on neglect. The opinion discusses an Alford plea and a de novo review of the conclusion of law that the neglect ground exists.
In re A.J.P.
375 N.C. 516 (2020)
This case discusses father's willful failure to make reasonable progress to correct the conditions of the child's removal when the child was removed from mother's care,. A nexus in father's case plan and those conditions existed. Although father was incarcerated, the court considered the limitation. There is a dissent.
In re S.E.T.
375 N.C. 665 (2020)
The affidavit required by Rule 4(j1) for service by publication was not filed in this TPR action. The court lacked personal jurisdiction over respondent. TPR vacated.
In re A.J.P.
375 N.C. 516 (2020)
TPR for willful abandonment affirmed. Discusses incarceration and limitations on respondent father as well as the conduct occurring outside of the determinative 6-month period. There is a dissent.
In re A.S.M.R.
375 N.C. 539 (2020)
Challenges to non-jurisdictional issues in an underlying adjudication action are abandonment when not appealed and cannot be raised at TPR. UCCJEA, which is jurisdictional, does not require explicit findings re: jurisdiction under the UCCJEA. The records supports jurisdiction under the UCCJEA exists.
In re S.M.
375 N.C. 673 (2020)
Father's delay in obtaining a psychosexual evaluation resulting in it being provided to the attorney the day before the TPR hearing does not meet the extraordinary circumstances criteria of G.S. 7B-1109(d) for granting a continuance. Father waived his constitutional argument for the basis of the continuance. The review is an abuse of discretion, which did not occur. Continuances are disfavored.
In re S.M.
375 N.C. 673 (2020)
The findings are support by clear and convincing evidence. The findings of mother's lack of reasonable progress in complying with her case plan and it being willful support the conclusion that grounds exists under G.S. 7B-1111(a)(2).
In re B.W.
___ N.C. App. ___ (Nov. 17, 2020)
This opinion discussed the residual hearsay exceptions for admission of a child's statements at the adjudicatory hearing. The statements were inadmissible, resulting in prejudice to mother-appellant.
In re L.G.
___ N.C. App. ___ (Nov. 17, 2020)
This opinion discusses the one year time period for waiving reviews and a court error in terminating jurisdiction when it needed to continue with DSS providing reasonable efforts for the secondary plan of reunification.
In re L.G.
___ N.C. App. ___ (Nov. 17, 2020)
There was no abuse of discretion or prejudice to mother when court denied her motion to continue the permanency planning hearing when mother was not present for it.
In re L.G.
___ N.C. App. ___ (Nov. 17, 2020)
G.S. 7B-906.1(e)(1) requires court to make finding about whether it is possible for juvenile to be placed with a parent within the next 6 months, which did not occur when the court ordered guardianship at a permanency planning hearing.
In re N.K.
___ N.C. App. ___ (Oct. 20, 2020)
Evidence supported findings that one child was abused and neglected as mother took and disseminated pornographic pictures of him and the sibling was neglected.
In re N.K.
___ N.C. App. ___ (Oct. 20, 2020)
G.S. 7B-903(a1) regarding relative placement involves two steps. The first requires a relative to be actually available and appropriate.
In re N.K.
___ N.C. App. ___ (Oct. 20, 2020)
A court may not delegate its judicial function re: visitation, and the order must include notice of the right to request a review.
In re J.D.C.H.
___ N.C. ___ (Sept. 25, 2020)
One single act during the determinative 6-month time period will not defeat the willful abandonment ground to TPR under G.S. 7B-1111(a)(7).
In re L.M.M.
___ N.C. ___ (Sept. 25, 2020)
Evidence and findings support conclusion of willful abandonment by mother. There is a dissent.
In re E.B.
___ N.C. ___ (Sept. 25, 2020)
TPR reversed on all 3 grounds( abandonment, neglect, failure to make reasonable progress), when the order was based on permanency planning hearings and orders that were legally void. DSS had custody through a relinquishment by one parent but never filed a petition alleging abuse, neglect, or dependency such that the trial court lacked subject matter jurisdiction to interfere with father's constitutional rights to parent and hold permanency planning hearings.
In re S.J.B.
___ N.C. ___ (Sept. 25, 2020)
There was no abuse of discretion in the court's determination that TPR was in child's best interests.
In re J.A.M.
375 N.C. 325 (2020)
One judge, one family does not require recusal of judge at TPR.
In re C.M.
848 S.E.2d 749 (2020), aff'd per curiam, ___ N.C. ___ (April 23, 2021)
Credible evidence supports the findings, even when there was contrary evidence to support a different finding. Statutory language for findings is not required if the substance of the statute is met.
In re V.M.
___ N.C. App. ___ (Sept. 1, 2020)
Neglect adjudication reversed and remanded for additional findings.
In re J.M.
___ N.C. App. ___ (Sept. 1, 2020)
G.S. 7B-602(a1) requires findings that a parent's waiver of counsel is knowing and voluntary.
In re J.M.
___ N.C. App. ___ (Sept. 1, 2020)
7B-905.1(c) differs from (b). Court improperly delegated authority to guardian re: modifying visitation.
In re I.K.
273 N.C. App. 37 (2020), aff'd 2021-NCSC-60
Clear and convincing evidence supported findings about ongoing concerns with unstable housing, DV, and substance abuse. Findings supported conclusion parents acted inconsistently with their parental rights such that guardianship order could be based on best interests. There is a dissent.
In re J.T.C.
273 N.C. App. 66 (2020), affirmed per curiam, 376 N.C. 642 (2021)
Evidence and findings support abandonment ground and BIC determination in this private TPR. There is a dissent.
In re E.F.
375 N.C. 88 (2020)
Written findings under G.S. 7B-1110(a) are only required when there is conflicting evidence. There was no evidence presented at the dispositional stage about the availability of maternal grandmother as a placement.
In re K.L.M.
___ N.C. ___ (Aug. 14, 2020)
No abuse of discretion in determining private TPR was in the children's best interests.
In re J.A.E.W.
___ N.C. ___ (Aug. 14, 2020)
When respondent is employed and has paid zero towards the cost of the child's care, the court is not required to make findings about the parent's living expenses.
In re L.E.W.
___ N.C. ___ (Aug. 14, 2020)
Appeal of PPO that eliminated reunification and a TPR. There is no burden of proof in a permanency planning hearing and court's misstatement of applying a clear, cogent, and convincing evidence standard was not prejudicial. The findings addressed the substance of G.S. 7B-906.2. The court did not abuse its discretion in reducing visitation.
In re L.E.W.
___ N.C. ___ (Aug. 14, 2020)
Mother's partial progress was not reasonable progress. TPR based on 7B-1111(a)(2) affirmed.
In re E.J.B.
375 N.C. 95 (2020)
The ICWA notices were deficient and the deficiencies were not cured with a notices sent during the post-TPR proceeding. The trial court must ensure notices are sent to each relevant tribe and the Bureau of Indian affairs and can only make a determination as to whether ICWA does not apply after the tribes & BIA fail to respond to multiple requests.
Harter v. Eggleston
___ N.C. App. ___ (Aug. 4, 2020)
Affidavits were competent evidence to support findings under G.S. 50A-207(b).
In re E.P.-L.M.
___ N.C. App. ___ (Aug. 4, 2020)
Use of stipulations by 3 of 4 parties and shifting of burden of proof to non-stipulating parties not preserved for appellate review. Concurrence addresses erroneous use of stipulations by trial court.
In re E.P.-L.M.
___ N.C. App. ___ (Aug. 4, 2020)
Unchallenged findings support adjudication of emotional abuse.
In re E.P.-L.M.
___ N.C. App. ___ (Aug. 4, 2020)
Unchallenged findings support adjudication of neglect.
In re E.P.-L.M.
___ N.C. App. ___ (Aug. 4, 2020)
Adjudication of dependency affirmed; discussion of use of post-petition evidence.
In re E.P.-L.M.
___ N.C. App. ___ (Aug. 4, 2020)
7B-911 order affirmed; child's adjudications constituted a substantial change in circumstances permitting modification of existing Ch. 50 custody order.
In re E.P.-L.M.
___ N.C. App. ___ (Aug. 4, 2020)
Court must address who pays and ability to pay if a parent when ordering supervised visitation at a visitation center.
In re K.W.
___ N.C. App. ___ (July 21, 2020)
At initial disposition, court may rely on reports and findings in adjudication order. Court did not err in not taking sworn testimony since no new evidence was presented. G.S. 7B-901(a).
In re K.W.
___ N.C. App. ___ (July 21, 2020)
No delegation of judicial function when DSS given discretion to expand mother's visits. Remanded because parties not notified of right to file motion for review. G.S. 7B-905.1.
In re S.M.L.
___ N.C. App. ___ (July 21, 2020)
Findings of fact for one child are supported by the evidence and support the conclusion of neglect. Findings of fact for the sibling do not support a neglect adjudication based on the child living in the home where another child has been abused.
In re S.M.L.
___ N.C. App. ___ (July 21, 2020)
The court did not comply with G.S. 7B-911 regarding terminating 7B jurisdiction and entering Ch. 50 order with proper findings regarding a modification of an existing custody order.
In re K.W.
___ N.C. App. ___ (July 21, 2020)
Adjudication of emotional abuse affirmed.
In re K.W.
___ N.C. App. ___ (July 21, 2020)
Appellate Rule 2 and writ of cert granted.
In re A.B.C.
___ N.C. ___ (July 17, 2020)
In the 4-3 opinions, TPR for failure to make reasonable progress was affirmed. The issues include substance use and methadone treatment, housing, and having another child reside in mother's care.
In re J.S.
___ N.C. ___ (July 17, 2020)
The findings were sufficient to support ground of failure to make reasonable progress. Mother did not make meaningful progress on her case plan and her intellectual disability did not prevent her from addressing the housing issues that resulted in the children's removal from care.
In re N.G.
374 N.C. 891 (2020)
Evidence and findings support the conclusion that father lacked the ability to provide a safe home and that there was a prior TPR. Father's conduct was characteristic of his diagnosis of anti-social personality disorder.
In re J.S.
___ N.C. ___ (July 17, 2020)
TPR affirmed. Trial court has authority to determine weight to give factors in G.S. 7B-1110(a). No findings required when there is no conflicting evidence about a factor.
In re N.G.
___ N.C. ___ (July 17, 2020)
Child's best interests are paramount consideration in disposition of TPR.
In re M.A.
___ N.C. ___ (July 17, 2020)
Lack of an adoptive placement does not preclude a TPR. A child's wishes are not determinative and their consent to adoption may be waived.
In re J.C.L.
___ N.C. ___ (July 17, 2020)
Pre-adoptive homes are by nature potential preadoptive homes.
In re S.M.M.
___ N.C. ___ (July 17, 2020)
Likelihood of adoption rested on juvenile achieving "stability." The court did not abuse its discretion in granting TPR as likelihood of adoption is not necessary for a court to conclude TPR is in the child's best interests.
In re A.B.C.
___ N.C. ___ (July 17, 2020)
In this 4-3 opinion, TPR affirmed. The court did not compare relationship between child and mother and child and foster parent. No abuse of discretion.
In re K.L.T.
___ N.C. ___ (July 17, 2020)
TPR for neglect and dependency reversed. Findings are unsupported by evidence and are based on conjecture. Issues involving completion of a case plan, domestic violence, treatment, and housing are discussed in this opinion.
In re J.J.B.
___ N.C. ___ (July 17, 2020)
The trial court determines weight to give best interests factors (including bond with parent) and makes reasonable inferences from the evidence. No abuse of discretion in determining TPR in the children's best interests.
In re W.I.M.
___ N.C. ___ (July 17, 2020)
There was no need for an alias and pluries summons or endorsement when the court permitted an amended TPR with summons and referred to them as a new filing.
In re A.B.C.
___ N.C. ___ (July 17, 2020)
A TPR order is not an appealable order until after the disposition (no appeal on adjudication order only).
In re K.R.C.
___ N.C. ___ (July 17, 2020)
TPR vacated and remanded for sufficient findings of fact. Grounds and ground are used interchangeably.
In re S.M.M.
___ N.C. ___ (July 17, 2020)
Trial court must strictly comply with mandate. Mandate was remand for new findings. Court had discretion to hear additional evidence and there was no abuse of discretion in failing to do so. There was no forecast of what any new evidence of changed circumstances at the time of the mandate would be in a best interests hearing.
In re J.O.D.
___ N.C. ___ (July 17, 2020)
Findings regarding domestic violence and substance use are sufficient to support conclusion of neglect re: past neglect and likelihood of repetition of neglect.
In re M.A.
___ N.C. ___ (July 17, 2020)
Evidence was sufficient to support findings that were sufficient to support neglect conclusion. Domestic violence was involved in this case.
In re M.C.
___ N.C. ___ (July 17, 2020)
The trial court determines credibility and makes reasonable inferences from the testimony. The findings regarding domestic violence were sufficient to support the conclusion of neglect.
In re J.C.L.
___ N.C. ___ (July 17, 2020)
Evidence and findings were sufficient to support neglect adjudication based on father's limited progress on his case plan.
In re M.H.
___ N.C. App. ___ (July 7, 2020)
Dependency adjudication reversed as there were no findings about the alternative childcare arrangement and the findings and evidence showed the child with living with a parent who was willing and able to provide care and supervision. This case involves unstable housing and a lack of employment.
In re A.B.
___ N.C. App. ___ (June 16, 2020)
Without an objection or argument to limit the court taking judicial notice of the nonsecure custody orders at the adjudication hearing, mother did not preserve the issue for appeal.
In re A.B.
___ N.C. App. ___ (June 16, 2020)
An abuse, neglect, and dependency adjudication is about the circumstances and conditions surrounding the child and not the culpability of the parent. This opinion discusses an abuse adjudication and challenge to findings of fact and conclusions of law related to mother, which were held to be without merit.
In re K.L.
___ N.C. App. ___ (June 16, 2020)
The opinion discusses an abused juvenile, the circumstances and conditions surrounding the child, a parent inflicting serious physical injury by non-accidental means, and unexplained injuries.
In re K.L.
___ N.C. App. ___ (June 16, 2020)
  • Facts: This case involves an appeal of an adjudication of an abused and neglected infant and an adjudication of a neglected juvenile, the infant’s 8-year old sibling who was living in t
In re A.N.T.
___ N.C. App. ___ (June 16, 2020)
Guardianship order with non-relative vacated for failing to make findings and conclusions about the relative placement option required by G.S. 7B-903(a1). This opinion discusses statutory and case law precedent to place juvenile with a ramily member.
In re M.M.
272 N.C. App. 55 (2020)
Discovery in an A/N/D action is governed by G.S. 7B-700. Information sharing must first occur and if additional information is needed, the party seeking that information may file a motion for discovery. These juvenile procedures control, not the Rules of Civil Procedure.
In re M.M.
272 N.C. App. 55 (2020)
The criteria of Rule 702 of the Rules of Evidence were satisfied when the court allowed a witness to testify as an expert in psychology and family evaluations.
In re M.M.
272 N.C. App. 55 (2020)
The findings support the court's conclusion that the juvenile suffered serious emotion damage resulting in an adjudication of abuse and neglect. The facts involve the juvenile's exposure to her parents' high conflict relationship.
In re L.T.
___ N.C. ___ (June 5, 2020)
Respondent father did not meet his burden of showing the court lacked modification jurisdiction under the UCCJEA. Findings are not required, but the record must show jurisdiction exists. Here, the record showed NC was the child's home state, which was the issue in this appeal.
In re F.S.T.Y.
___ N.C. ___ (June 5, 2020)
In a case of first impression, the NC Supreme Court held that the status exception to minimum contacts for personal jurisdiction applies to TPR proceedings, meaning minimum contacts for the nonresident parent are not required.
In re A.L.S.
___ N.C. ___ (June 5, 2020)
There was no abuse in discretion when the trial court denied mother's motion to continue the TPR. She did not make a showing of extraordinary circumstances as required by G.S. 7B-1109(d).
In re A.L.S.
___ N.C. ___ (June 5, 2020)
TPR affirmed on ground of abandonment.
In re C.V.D.C.
___ N.C. ___ (June 5, 2020)
The standard of review for a best interests disposition is an abuse of discretion. Written findings of the relevant factors under G.S. 7B-1110(a) were made. Relevant factors do not include factors based on uncontested evidence.
In re J.M.J.-J.
___ N.C. ___ (June 5, 2020)
TPR on ground of neglect is affirmed. This opinion discusses judicial notice, collateral estoppel, inferences drawn by the trial court, and a respondent parent's incarceration.
In re I.N.C.
___ N.C. ___ (June 5, 2020)
There was no abuse of discretion in determining TPR was in the children's best interests. This case distinguishes In re J.A.O., which involved a TPR for a juvenile with significant behavioral issues and the likelihood of adoption factor under G.S. 7B-1110(a).
In re A.J.T.
___ N.C. ___ (June 5, 2020)
There was no abuse of discretion in determining TPR was in the child's best interests. The factors in G.S. 7B-1110(a) are discussed, including the child's age and preference, a lack of adoptive placement, the bond with the mother, and the likelihood of adoption when there are significant mental health issues the child is experiencing.
Routten v. Routten
___ N.C. ___ (June 5, 2020)
In a custody action between two parents, the trial court determines the child's best interests. The standard that applies in a custody action between a parent and non-parent that must address the parent's constitutionally protected paramount rights to care, custody, and control does not apply in an action between two parents. Moore v. Moore is overruled.
In re J.M.
___ N.C. App. ___ (May 5, 2020)
Upon review of order and hearing transcript, the necessary findings were made under G.S. 7B-906.1(n) to waive further reviews.
In re J.M.
___ N.C. App. ___ (May 5, 2020)
Evidence and findings were sufficient to support the court's determination that mother acted inconsistently with her parental rights in a PPO that awarded guardianship to the foster parents.
In re J.M.
___ N.C. App. ___ (May 5, 2020)
Evidence and findings were sufficient for court's verification that guardians understand the legal significance of their appointment as guardians.
In re J.M.
___ N.C. App. ___ (May 5, 2020)
In order eliminating reunification, case remanded for required statutory findings under G.S. 7B-906.2(d).
In re N.N.B.
271 N.C. App. 199 (2020)
Affirming TPR on dependency ground. Child's mental health needs requiring a Level III PRFT upon discharge from Level IV PRTF made placement with relative an inappropriate and unavailable child care arrangement.
In re A.G.D.
___ N.C. ___ (May 1, 2020)
This opinion affirms a TPR on the ground of willful abandonment and discusses the impact of incarceration on a parent's ability to show love, guidance, affection, and parental concern for his children.
In re C.N.
___ N.C. App. ___ (April 21, 2020)
On remand from NC Supreme Court, the COA reaffirmed its earlier holding reversing the TPR based on neglect and failure to make reasonable progress based on insufficient evidence and findings.
In re S.D.
___ N.C. ___ (April 3, 2020)
The evidence supported the findings that father (who was incarcerated 14 months of the 2 years the child was in DSS custody) made minimal progress on his case plan and reunification. The findings support the conclusion of neglect (past and likelihood of future neglect).
In re B.C.B.
___ N.C. ___ (April 3, 2020)
The petition provided sufficient notice of the grounds for TPR.
In re B.C.B.
___ N.C. ___ (April 3, 2020)
The findings of fact support the conclusion that abandonment under G.S. 7B-1111(a)(7) exist.
In re K.N.K.
___ N.C. ___ (April 3, 2020)
The TPR on willful abandonment is affirmed. Willfulness is a question of fact. The findings support father's willful action to forego all parental duties.
In re K.N.K.
___ N.C. ___ (April 3, 2020)
  • Facts: In 2017, mother filed a petition to terminate father’s parental rights on the ground of willful abandonment.
In re C.J.C.
___ N.C. ___ (April 3, 2020)
The clerical error in not checking the box on AOC-J-207 indicating the attorney advocate was also the GAL was a clerical and not a prejudicial error.
In re C.J.C.
___ N.C. ___ (April 3, 2020)
The court did not abuse its discretion when determining the child's best interests was served by the TPR. In this private TPR, a permanent plan does not exist, and the likelihood of adoption is not relevant when the mother/petitioner has full custody of the juvenile.
In re N.P.
___ N.C. ___ (April 3, 2020)
The findings of fact were sufficient to support the conclusion of neglect.
In re Z.A.M.
___ N.C. ___ (April 3, 2020)
Reviewing father's 3-month period of sobriety in the context of the 22 months the children were outside the home, the court made appropriate findings about the likelihood of future neglect and failure to make reasonable progress.
In re Z.A.M.
___ N.C. ___ (April 3, 2020)
The NC Supreme Court reaffirmed the abuse of discretion standard of a best interests dispositional order. The trial court did not abuse its discretion when giving more weight to factors other than the children's bond with their parents.
In re K.G.
___ N.C. App. ___ (March 17, 2020)
Remand of PPO to ensure proof of notice required by ICWA to the Indian tribes and regional BIA was provided as required by ICWA when the court had reason to know the child was an Indian child based on mother's assertion that she is of Cherokee ancestry.
In re A.K.G.
___ N.C. App. ___ (March 17, 2020)
When juvenile turned 18 during pendency of appeal, case became moot as district court no longer has jurisdiction. No exception to the mootness doctrine applies.
In re D.W.P.
___ N.C. ___ (Feb. 28, 2020)
The TPR based on neglect was supported by findings of fact that are supported by clear, cogent, and convincing evidence. This opinion discusses the role of the trial judge in considering evidence and an unknown cause for non-accidental injuries. There is a dissent.
In re S.E.
___ N.C. ___ (Feb. 28, 2020)
Respondent did not meet her burden of showing the trial court lacked subject matter jurisdiction under the UCCJEA.
In re S.E.
___ N.C. ___ (Feb. 28, 2020)
Mother failed to pay reasonable portion of the cost of child's care when she had an ability to do so and her not being ordered to do so does not prohibit the court from concluding this ground exists.
In re J.M.
___ N.C. ___ (Feb. 28, 2020)
Mother had an ability to work and pay a portion of the cost of the children's care. Her payment of zero is based on her own conduct in quitting her job and not seeking an alternative provider to manage her Rx. Additionally, she did not seek to modify a child support order.
In re C.J.
___ N.C. ___ (Jan 24, 2020)
Nexus existed between elements of case plan and reasons for child's removal. Findings that mother failed to make any progress on her case plan were supported by clear, cogent, and convincing evidence and supported the conclusion that mother failed to make reasonable progress to correct conditions leading to child's removal after willfully leaving child in foster care for one year.
In re S.D.C.
___ N.C. ___ (Jan. 24. 2020)
Evidence of the availability of a potential relative placement was not presented at the TPR hearing. The court was not required to consider or make findings about that issue as a "relevant consideration" under G.S. 7B-1110(a) when determining that the TPR was in the child's best interests.
In re K.N.
___ N.C. ___ (Jan 24, 2020)
Findings were insufficient to support likelihood of future neglect. Issue involved respondent's incarceration, substance use, criminal history, and domestic violence. The TPR was vacated and remanded for further proceedings.
In re J.H.
___ N.C. ___ (Jan 24, 2020)
Court did not abuse its discretion in finding mother only made "some progress" on her case plan and ordering reunification be eliminated.
In re J.H.
___ N.C. ___ (Jan 24, 2020)
Court did not abuse its discretion in determining TPR was in children's best interests. Court made findings of children's likelihood of adoption.
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.
268 N.C. App. 360 (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.
268 N.C. App. 360 (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.
268 N.C. App. 360 (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.
268 N.C. App. 360 (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. ___, 834 S.E.2d 683 (2019)
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 compliant 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.
372 N.C. 372 (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.
266 N.C. App. 448 (2019)
This opinion discusses the application of the UCCJEA to a 7B case when the court has retained jurisdiction.
In re C.M.B.
266 N.C. App. 448 (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
264 N.C. App. 363 (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.
254 N.C. App. 401, 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.
254 N.C. App. 401 (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.
256 N.C. App. 450 (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
256 N.C. App. 34 (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
256 N.C. App. 34 (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.
253 N.C. App. 423, 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.
253 N.C. App. 53 (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.
250 N.C App. 370, 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.
244 N.C. App. 44 (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 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.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 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 tendered 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 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 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 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.