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Domestic Relations — Parent & Child – Termination of Parental Rights – Competency – GAL

In re J.R.W. (Lawyers Weekly No. 14-07-1067, 14 pp.) (Linda Stephens, J.) Appealed from Guilford County District Court (Angela Foster, J.) N.C. App.

Holding: Nothing in G.S. § 7B-1101.1(c) requires a trial court to conduct an inquiry to determine whether a guardian ad litem should be appointed for a parent merely because of her mental health history. Moreover, the record in this case establishes both that the extent of respondent’s mental health problems was well known to the trial court, and that those issues did not rise to the level of incompetency.

The trial court did not abuse its discretion when it failed to conduct a hearing into respondent’s competency prior to holding a termination of parental rights hearing. We affirm the termination of respondent’s parental rights.


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