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Juvenile Law

Juvenile Law Appellate Court Opinion

   by Townsend, Karen

 https://www.jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=3250

AC41451 - In re Lilyana L.- (Termination of parental rights; claim of deliberate, nonaccidental assault; " On appeal, the respondent claims that the trial court erred when it determined, pursuant to General Statutes § 17a-112 (j) (3) (F), that the respondent committed an assault, through a deliberate, nonaccidental act that resulted in serious bodily injury to another child of the parent. We affirm the judgment of the trial court.")


Juvenile Law Appellate Court Opinion

   by Roy, Christopher

 https://www.jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=3246

AC41531 - In re Zakai F. ("The respondent mother, Kristi F., appeals from the judgment of the trial court denying her motion for reinstatement of guardianship of her minor son, Zakai F. The respondent claims that the court violated her fundamental right to the care and custody of Zakai under the United States constitution by denying her motion (1) without a showing that she was unfit, and (2) without a finding by clear and convincing evidence that Zakai would be at a substantial risk of physical or emotional harm if the current guardianship of him by his aunt, the respondent's sister, were terminated. The respondent additionally claims that the court abused its discretion in concluding that her reinstatement as guardian was not in Zakai's best interest. We disagree with the respondent's claims and, accordingly, affirm the judgment of the court.")


Juvenile Law Appellate Court Opinion

   by Townsend, Karen

 https://www.jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=3225

AC41469 - In re Madison M. ("On appeal, the respondent claims that he was not provided the specific steps mandated by General Statutes § 17a-112 (j) (3) (B) (i) and, consequently, was unable to achieve a level of rehabilitation that would reasonably encourage a belief that at some future date he could assume a responsible position in the lives of his children. Additionally, the respondent contends that the failure to provide him with the specific steps did not constitute harmless error. We do not agree with either argument and, therefore, affirm the judgments of the trial court.")


Juvenile Law Appellate Court Opinion

   by Booth, George

 https://www.jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=3124

AC41349 - In re Joheli V. (Termination of parental rights; "The respondent father, Luis V., appeals from the judgment of the trial court terminating his parental rights with respect to his minor child, Joheli V. On appeal, the respondent claims that the court erred when it determined, pursuant to General Statutes § 17a-112 (j) (3) (B), that he had failed to achieve such degree of personal rehabilitation as would encourage the belief that within a reasonable time, considering the age and needs of Joheli, he could assume a responsible position in her life, based solely upon the fact that he is currently incarcerated and awaiting trial for allegedly sexually assaulting Joheli. We affirm the judgment of the trial court.")


Juvenile Law Appellate Court Opinion

   by Townsend, Karen

 https://www.jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=3113

AC41106 - In re Briana G. (Termination of parental rights to three minor children; “On appeal, the respondent claims that the court (1) prematurely determined that the respondent failed to rehabilitate because the Department of Children and Families (department) did not provide him with sufficient time and resources to do so, and (2) improperly admitted into evidence transcripts of text messages obtained by the police, although a proper chain of custody was not proved prior to their admission. We affirm the judgments of the trial court.”)


Juvenile Law Appellate Court Opinions

   by Townsend, Karen

 https://www.jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=3085

AC41248, AC41249 - In re Katherine H., In re James H.("In these consolidated appeals, the self-represented respondent mother, Ann C., appeals from the judgments of the trial court finding her minor children, Katherine H. and James H., neglected and committing them to the custody of the petitioner, the Commissioner of Children and Families. On appeal, the respondent essentially takes issue with the manner in which the Department of Children and Families (department) performed its responsibilities and the court’s factual findings. We affirm the judgments of the trial court.")


Juvenile Law Appellate Court Opinion

   by Townsend, Karen

 https://www.jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=3080

AC41157- In re Zoey H. ("The respondent claims that (1) his right to procedural due process under the United States constitution was violated by the court’s failure to hold a hearing to determine his fitness as a parent before depriving him of the custody and care of his child, and (2) as applied, General Statutes § 46b-129 (m) violates his right to substantive due process under the United States constitution and improperly assigns the burden of proof to him. We affirm the judgment of the trial court.")


Juvenile Law Appellate Court Opinion

   by Townsend, Karen

 https://www.jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=2991

AC40809 - In re Athena C. (Petition by the Commissioner of Children and Families to terminate parental rights; “The respondent claims that the trial court improperly (1) determined that the termination of his parental rights was in the child’s best interest; and (2) denied his motion to transfer guardianship of the child to the child’s maternal grandmother (grandmother). We affirm the judgment of the trial court.")


Juvenile Law Appellate Court Opinion

   by Townsend, Karen

 https://www.jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=2963

AC40760 - In re Mariana A. ("The petitioner claims that the court improperly (1) concluded that she had not met her burden of proving by clear and convincing evidence that the mother had failed to rehabilitate in accordance with General Statutes § 17a-112 (j) (3) (B) (i), and (2) failed to analyze properly whether the father had abandoned Mariana pursuant to § 17a-112 (j) (3) (A). We disagree with the petitioner’s claims and, accordingly, affirm the judgment of the trial court.")


Juvenile Law Appellate Court Opinion

   by Booth, George

 https://www.jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=1902

AC40437 - In re Kyllan V. (Termination of parental rights; collateral estoppel; "The respondent father appeals from the judgment of the trial court terminating his parental rights with respect to his biological daughter, K, pursuant to General Statutes § 45a-717 (g). The respondent claims on appeal that the trial court improperly relied on the adjudicatory findings from a prior proceeding involving two of his other children to support the adjudicatory ground in the present case, namely, that because of a parental act of commission or omission, K was denied care, guidance, or control necessary for her physical, educational, moral, or emotional well-being as required by the statute. We agree with the respondent that the trial court improperly applied collateral estoppel in determining that K was denied the care, guidance, or control necessary for her physical, educational, moral, or emotional well-being as a result of the respondent's act of commission or omission. Accordingly, we reverse the judgment and remand the case for a new trial.")


Juvenile Law Supreme Court Opinion

   by Townsend, Karen

 https://www.jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=834

SC19913, SC19914 - In Re Egypt E. (Termination of parental rights; "This case chiefly concerns the scope of the ground for termination of parental rights contemplated by General Statutes § 17a-112 (j) (3) (C), regarding acts of parental commission or omission that deny a child the care necessary for the child’s physical or emotional well-being… The respondents claim, therefore, that the termination of their parental rights improperly was based on a finding of predictive harm, a type of harm not contemplated by § 17a-112 (j) (3) (C). We agree with the respondents that a termination of parental rights pursuant to § 17a- 112 (j) (3) (C) may not be based upon predictive harm. Under the unusual procedural circumstances underlying this appeal, however, we conclude that the court properly found that § 17a-112 (j) (3) (C) was proven on the basis that Egypt had been harmed by the respondents’ postremoval acts of parental commission or omission. Specifically, because the petitions to terminate the respondents’ parental rights were amended, and, therefore, the adjudicatory date was extended to encompass events subsequent to the filing of the original petitions, the court properly considered the conduct following the removal of the children, which had an actual, harmful effect on the well-being of Egypt. Accordingly, we affirm the judgments of the trial court.")


Juvenile Law Supreme Court Opinion

   by Mazur, Catherine

 https://www.jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=797

SC19907 - In re Henrry P. B. - P. ("In this certified appeal, we consider whether the Probate Court retains the statutory authority to make findings pursuant to General Statutes § 45a-608n (b) in connection with a petition for special immigrant juvenile status (juvenile status) under 8 U.S.C. § 1101 (a) (27) (J), when the minor child who is the subject of the petition reaches the age of eighteen years old during the pendency of the petition. The petitioner, Reyna P. A., and her son, Henrry P. B.-P., appeal, upon our grant of their petition for certification, from the judgment of the Appellate Court, which affirmed the judgments of the Superior Court for Juvenile Matters dismissing their appeals from the decisions of the Probate Court. In re Henrry P. B.-P., 171 Conn. App. 393, 415, 156 A.3d 673 (2017). We agree with their dispositive claim in this appeal, and conclude that the Probate Court did not lose its authority to make juvenile status findings pursuant to § 45a-608n (b) when Henrry turned eighteen years old during the pendency of the petition. Accordingly, we reverse the judgment of the Appellate Court.")


Juvenile Law Appellate Court Opinions

   by Townsend, Karen

 https://www.jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=758

AC40202 - In re Jacob W. (Termination of parental rights; "On appeal, the petitioner challenges the trial court’s conclusion that she had failed to prove the nonexistence of an ongoing parent-child relationship by clear and convincing evidence as required by General Statutes § 45a-717 (g) (2) (C).3 The petitioner argues, inter alia, that the trial court applied the incorrect legal test to determine whether such a relationship exists by focusing on the respondent’s actions rather than the children’s feelings.4 We agree that the trial court applied the incorrect test because the court legally and logically cannot have found both that a parent-child relationship exists and that the custodians prevented such a relationship from existing. Moreover, even under the test as applied, the trial court’s conclusions are inconsistent. Accordingly, we reverse the judgments of the trial court and remand the case for a new trial.")

AC40517 - In re Damian G. (Termination of parental rights; “The respondent claims that the court erroneously found that: (1) she failed to rehabilitate and (2) the termination of her parental rights was in the best interests of the children. We affirm the judgments of the trial court... The respondent has failed to demonstrate that any of the court’s findings were clearly erroneous. The court’s best interest determination rests on a variety of findings, several of which are not challenged on appeal.”)


Juvenile Law Supreme Court Opinion

   by Townsend, Karen

 https://www.jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=713

SC19902 Order on Motion- In Re Elianah T.-T. ("Following the release of our decision in In re Elianah T.-T., 326 Conn. 614, 165 A.3d 1236 (2017), in which this court concluded that General Statutes § 17a-10 (c) did not authorize the petitioner, the Commissioner of Children and Families (commissioner), to vaccinate a child placed in her temporary custody over the objection of that child's parents, the commissioner moved for reconsideration pursuant to Practice Book § 71-5. In this motion for reconsideration, the commissioner states that, in briefing this case, she should have claimed that General Statutes § 17a-10 (c) should be interpreted in the context of General Statutes §§ 17a-93 and 17a-98. Specifically, the commissioner contends that the operation of General Statutes § 17a-10 (c) is limited to custody over juveniles who have been adjudicated delinquent, and that General Statutes §§ 17a-93 and 17a-98 confer broader guardianship authority that permits her to vaccinate minor children in her custody. The commissioner candidly acknowledges that she did not advance her arguments concerning the effect of General Statutes §§ 17a-93 and 17a-98 until the filing of this motion for reconsideration. As this argument was not previously advanced to this court, we grant the motion for reconsideration, but deny the relief requested.")


Juvenile Law Supreme Court Opinion

   by Booth, George

 https://www.jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=607

SC19695 - In re Elijah C. (Termination of parental rights; dismissal of appeal by Appellate Court as moot; certification from Appellate Court; "In this certified appeal, the respondent, Marquita C., appeals from the judgment of Appellate Court, which dismissed her appeal from the judgment of the trial court terminating her parental rights as to her son, Elijah C.[1] See In re Elijah C., 164 Conn. App. 518, 519, 137 A.3d 944 (2016). The respondent claims that the Appellate Court incorrectly concluded that she had failed to adequately brief one of the two independent grounds for reversing the judgment of the trial court and, consequently, that her appeal was moot. She further claims that the trial court incorrectly determined, first, that the Department of Children and Families (department) made reasonable efforts to reunify her with Elijah and, second, that she was unable to benefit from those efforts.[2] We agree with the respondent that the Appellate Court improperly dismissed her appeal as moot. We further conclude, however, that the evidence supports the trial court's determination that the respondent was unable to benefit from reunification efforts. Because our resolution of that issue constitutes an independent basis for affirming the trial court's judgment, we need not address the respondent's claim that the trial court incorrectly concluded that the department made reasonable efforts to reunify her with Elijah. We therefore vacate the judgment of the Appellate Court and remand the case to that court with direction to affirm the trial court's judgment.")


Juvenile Law Appellate Court Opinions

   by Townsend, Karen

 https://www.jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=587

AC39953 - In re Luis N. (Termination of parental rights; mother; "On appeal, the respondent claims that the court (1) violated her right to due process by meeting with the children ex parte, (2) failed timely to canvass her pursuant to In re Yasiel R., (3) erred by concluding that she had failed to rehabilitate to the degree that she could not be restored as a responsible parent within a reasonable time, and (4) erred by finding that it was in the best interests of the children to terminate her parental rights in them. We affirm the judgments of the trial court.")

AC39934- In re Luis N. (Termination of parental rights; father; "On appeal, the respondent claims that the judgments should be reversed because the court met with the children ex parte in the presence of a Department of Children and Families visitation supervisor, failed to make a record of its observations regarding the children, and failed to declare a mistrial. We affirm the judgments of the trial court.")


Judicial Branch Now Publishing Headnotes for its Supreme & Appellate Court Opinions

   by Booth, George

 https://www.jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=534

The Judicial Branch has announced that it is now publishing a syllabus (headnote) at the top of each Supreme and Appellate Court opinion:

The Judicial Branch is now posting online headnotes for both Supreme and Appellate Court opinions. These headnotes, which accompany individual Supreme and Appellate Court decisions, include a short summary of the ruling and the procedural history of a case. The Reporter of Judicial Decisions prepares the headnotes, which are not part of the opinion. As such, the opinion alone should be relied upon for the reasoning behind the decision [Emphasis added].

Subscribe to a case law category (or categories) of your choice through our Email Digest or RSS delivery services to receive the latest cases from the Supreme or Appellate Courts delivered directly to your inbox.


Juvenile Law Supreme Court Opinions

   by Townsend, Karen

 https://www.jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=472

SC19707 - In re Natalie S. ("On appeal to this court, the respondent asserts that the Appellate Court incorrectly concluded that the Department of Children and Families (department) was not required to provide reunification efforts to her in the present case because the father was awarded temporary guardianship of Natalie. The petitioner, the Commissioner of Children and Families, asserts that the department was not required to continue providing reunification efforts to the respondent because the trial court granted custody and guardianship to the father. We affirm the judgment of the Appellate Court.")

SC19844- In re Natalie S. ("On appeal to this court, the mother asserts that the trial court incorrectly determined that North Carolina was the appropriate forum to adjudicate the issues raised in her motion for visitation. The respondent father, Matthew B. (father), asserts that the trial court properly denied the mother’s motion for visitation on the ground that North Carolina is the more appropriate forum to decide the issues raised therein. We affirm the judgment of the trial court.")


Juvenile Law Supreme Court Opinion

   by Booth, George

 https://www.jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=387

SC19798 - In re Santiago G. (Termination of parental rights; "The dispositive issue in this appeal is whether the denial of a third party's motion to intervene in a proceeding brought to terminate the parental rights of a minor child's biological mother is an appealable final judgment. The proposed intervenor, Maria G., appeals from the judgment of the trial court, Hon. Barbara M. Quinn, judge trial referee, denying her motion to intervene as of right and permissively. On appeal, Maria G. claims that her guardianship interests over the minor child, Santiago G., will effectively be extinguished if the court terminates the parental rights of the respondent Melissa E., who is Santiago's biological mother. As such, she claims to have a right to intervene or, in the alternative, that she should be granted permissive intervention. We disagree, and conclude that Maria G. does not have a colorable claim of intervention as of right and, as such, is not appealing from a final judgment. Accordingly, we dismiss this appeal for lack of subject matter jurisdiction.")


Juvenile Law Appellate Court Opinion

   by Booth, George

 https://www.jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=373

AC39594 - In re Savannah Y. (Termination of parental rights; "The respondent mother, Ashley R., appeals from the judgment of the trial court, rendered in favor of the petitioner, the Commissioner of Children and Families, terminating her parental rights with respect to her minor child, Savannah Y. On appeal, the respondent claims that the court improperly determined that (1) the Department of Children and Families (department) made reasonable reunification efforts, (2) she had failed to achieve a sufficient degree of personal rehabilitation to encourage a belief that she could assume a responsible position in Savannah's life within a reasonable period of time, (3) there was no ongoing parent-child relationship, and (4) termination of her parental rights was in the best interest of the child. We affirm the judgment of the court.")


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