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Domestic Relations – Parent & Child – Termination of Parental Rights – Prior Neglect Adjudication – Father Released from Prison

 

In re M.A.W. (Lawyers Weekly No. 010-067-17, 12 pp.) (Barbara Jackson, J.) Appealed from New Hanover County District Court (J.H. Corpening II, J.) On writ of certiorari to the Court of Appeals. N.C. S. Ct.

Holding: Even though the prior adjudication of neglect in this case was entered against the child’s mother while the respondent-father was incarcerated, respondent stipulated to the allegations of neglect and admitted he “knew it wouldn’t be too long that [DSS] would try to take” the child. Respondent initially indicated a desire to be involved in the child’s life, but after his release he failed to follow through consistently with the court’s directives and recommendations. The trial court properly found that past neglect was established by DSS and that there was a likelihood of repetition of neglect; therefore, the trial court did not err in concluding that grounds existed pursuant to G.S. § 7B-1111(a)(1) to terminate respondent’s parental rights.

We reverse the Court of Appeals’ decision to the contrary.

 


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