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Termination of Parental Rights and Adoption: Where does the GAL fit in?. The most important steps to know in the TPR process and how the GAL plays a role. Termination of Parental Rights. An example?

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termination of parental rights and adoption where does the gal fit in

Termination of Parental Rights and Adoption: Where does the GAL fit in?

The most important steps to know in the TPR process and how the GAL plays a role

termination of parental rights
Termination of Parental Rights
  • An example?
  • In order to be freed for adoption, a child’s legal relation to the biological parent must be severed
tpr as the permanency plan
TPR as the Permanency Plan
  • About 32 % of our cases go through TPR
  • Usually not ordered when family members are placement
  • Most permanent plan
  • Takes the longest to achieve
opening a tpr file
Opening a TPR File
  • New timeline starts- Ideal intervals, not always actual
  • DSS files a petition- what is alleged?
  • GAL has to be reappointed….new appointment order!
  • GAL served with petition for program and child
  • Date set for pre-trial
timelines ja vs jt
Timelines: JA vs. JT

Petition

is

Filed

Non-secure hearings

Adjudication/Disposition

Permanency Planning

Review

Review

Review

Review

Review

JA

7

7

30

30

90

90

90

30

180

180

TPR Petition Filed

Pre-Trial Conference

TPR Hearing

(Days)

JT

30

60

(Days)

pre trial hearings
Pre-Trial Hearings
  • Usually held well in advance of TPR
  • Address issues of jurisdiction and service- you will be served!
  • Appoint attorneys for parents
  • GAL is not required to be there, no report
  • Set a day for TPR hearing
preparing for a tpr hearing
Preparing for a TPR Hearing
  • Interviews
    • Child
    • Foster parents
    • Observe visits
  • Therapist
    • The child’s understanding of adoption?
    • In the child’s best interest?
  • Child
    • Do they want to be adopted?
    • Do they understand what adoption means?
  • Report
tpr hearing important to remember
TPR Hearing- Important to Remember
  • GAL needs to be at the hearing
  • GAL will likely testify
  • Court is only addressing one issue: TPR
  • Hearing could have several witnesses; be more than one day
  • Child may want to be present
  • Documents from professionals are important
  • Pictures are fine to present to court
tpr hearing two parts
Circumstances That Are Grounds for Termination

Abandonment

Abuse/neglect likelihood

Mental illness or deficiency leading to incapacity

Failure of reasonable efforts

Loss of rights of another child

Failure to provide monetary support

Failure to establish paternity

Child in care 12 of 22 months

Felony assault of child or siblingMurder/Manslaughter of sibling child

Circumstances That Are Not Grounds for Termination

Felony conviction/incarceration

Sexual abuse

Failure to maintain contact

TPR Hearing: Two Parts
  • Part One- Grounds for Termination
tpr hearings two parts
TPR Hearings: Two Parts
  • Part Two- Best Interest of the Child
    • Child’s Wishes!
    • Age of the child
    • Likelihood of adoption
    • TPR will assist the permanent plan because
    • The bond between the child and the parent can be characterized as follows
    • The bond between the child and the current caretaker can be characterized as follows
    • Other relevant considerations
slide11
In The Matter Of: DOB: File Number:

Child’s Name Birth date Juv. File #

Guardian: Your name Attorney Advocate: Laura Bodenheimer

Court Date

Brief Summary of Case Status:

Persons interviewed and dates:

Current Concerns:

Child’s Wishes:

Considerations for the Court in Determining Whether Termination is in the Child’s Best Interest:

Age of the child:

Likelihood of adoption:

TPR will assist the permanent plan because:

The bond between the child and the parent can be characterized as follows:

The bond between the child and the current caretaker can be characterized as follows:.

Other relevant considerations include:

Recommendations to Protect and Promote the Best Interest of the Child:.

Respectfully Submitted,

Your Name

Guardian ad Litem

GAL Supervisor

Supervisor Title

the appeal process
The Appeal Process
  • Parents have a limited time to appeal- 30 days
  • Appeals process has 180 day timeline
  • Can potentially be appealed to the NC Supreme Court
post tpr what happens now
Post-TPR: What Happens Now?
  • Recruit for adoptive family if needed
  • Adoption Committee
    • DSS; GAL
  • Post-TPR Reviews
  • Paperwork
    • We’ll get notice of filing and approval
  • Clerk of Court approves adoptions
    • Keep in touch with SW or adoptive family!
important for the gal to consider
Important for the GAL to Consider
  • Child’s approval
  • TPR into legal limbo
  • Siblings/relative relationships
  • Foster parents’ abilities
what ifs
What Ifs….
  • The child says….
    • Do I have to change my name?
    • I don’t want to be adopted
    • Will I ever see my mom again?
    • Will I ever see my grandparents again?
  • The foster parents say…
    • Am I going to get money when I adopt?
    • I don’t really think we can adopt her
    • What if this doesn’t work out when she’s older?
    • Should we keep in contact with the birth parents?
wrap up
Wrap Up
  • Make sure you understand the TPR process
  • Make sure the child understands
  • Consider other permanency options
  • Consider all information before recommendation of change in plan
  • Help others understand the process
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