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Watson v. State, 2015 WL 5315650 (Ga.). Defendant was convicted on two counts of sexual battery against daughter when she was 11-13 years old. Sexual battery involves nonconsensual, intentional physical contact with victim’s intimate body parts. That individual younger than 16 is legally incapable of consenting to sexual contact does not necessarily mean she is legally incapable of consenting to physical contact with her intimate body parts. Court declined to construe sexual battery statute in way that would criminalize wide range of apparently innocent conduct, including contacts on athletic fields or playgrounds, physician’s breast exam on 15–year–old patient, or changing baby’s diaper. 


Foster v. State, 2016 WL 5759148 (Georgia). In prosecution for felony murder and first degree cruelty to children, defendant was not entitled to continuance to obtain independent expert to evaluate autopsy results even if defense counsel had not abandoned motion for continuance made four days before trial. Defendant made no showing as to who expert would be, what testimony would be expected to show, or how testimony would benefit him.



Scott v. State, 2016 WL 3658938 (Ga.). Statutory provision criminalizing offense of “obscene Internet contact with a child” did not prohibit real and substantial amount of expression protected under First Amendment. Statute’s intent element required that accused, with knowledge or belief victim was in fact child younger than 16, made contact with victim with specific intent to arouse or satisfy own or victim’s sexual desire. This element dramatically reduced range of expression subject to statutory prohibition and eliminated possibility innocuous communications might fall within statute’s proscriptions.




Hutchins v. State, 756 S.E.2d 347 (Ga. Ct. App. 2014). Evidence supported mother’s conviction for allowing her child to be present where methamphetamine was being manufactured. Both mother and child lived with maternal grandmother, whom mother knew had a history of manufacturing and selling methamphetamine in and behind the home. Mother was also aware of the smells associated with making methamphetamine.


Brown v. State, 728 S.E.2d 778 (Ga. Ct. App. 2012). Trial judge in criminal child abuse trial did not abuse discretion by denying mother’s request to redact portions of a recorded police interrogation. Any prejudicial effect of presenting the portion of the interview where the officer cursed at the mother and implied that he worried he would find her child dead in the future if they were reunited was minimal. The officer had arrested the mother for child cruelty and the jury would likely understand of the nature of police interrogations.



Gomez v. State, 801 S.E.2d 847 (Ga. 2017). Defendant parents could not be convicted of both felony contributing to deprivation of child and felony murder. They could not be convicted or sentenced for felony contributing to deprivation of child, predicated on death of daughter, when defendants were convicted of felony murder based on aggravated assault resulting in daughter’s death. Trial court could only impose one conviction and sentence for killing of single victim.

Shah v. State,
2016 WL 6407336 (Ga.). Defendant appealed conviction for felony murder and two counts of first degree cruelty to children in connection with death of her infant daughter. Evidence was sufficient to support conviction but jury instruction on reckless conduct as lesser included offense of felony cruelty to children charges was warranted and trial court’s error in denying defendant’s request for jury instruction on reckless conduct was not harmless.


Estrada v. State, 738 S.E.2d 344 (Ga. Ct. App. 2013). Trial court properly admitted hearsay statements of six-year-old child in criminal sex abuse trial. Hearsay had sufficient indications of reliability since child disclosed the abuse freely to a family member the night of the assault, to an officer the same night, a trained forensic interviewer and the statements were made with no evidence of threats or promises in nonthreatening environments and her account was fairly consistent throughout.

Leggett v. State, 771 S.E.2d 50 (Ga. Ct. App. 2015). Defendant in sexual abuse prosecution challenged witness’s testimony about victim’s outcry statement as hearsay. Statement was admissible under child hearsay statute because victim was under 14 years old and had already testified that she told witness about incident. Defendant’s challenge to forensic interviewer’s testimony that she improperly bolstered credibility of victim also failed because interviewer did not state that she believed victim was truthful.


Whorton v. State, 741 S.E.2d 653 (Ga. Ct. App. 2013). Trial court properly admitted hearsay statements of child about sexual abuse in criminal trial and court was not required to hold a pretrial hearing on admissibility because statements were made either spontaneously or to forensic interviewers with evidence that there was no coaching or other inducements to make the statements, showing sufficient indicia of reliability. 


Jones v. State, 2017 WL 1548564 (Ga.). Georgia Supreme Court held defendant convicted of felony murder based on cruelty to children is not entitled to new trial if sufficient evidence supported conviction based on at least one of two underlying offenses. Evidence was sufficient to support conviction for first degree cruelty to child. Medical examiner testified child’s death was caused by traumatic head injuries not roughhousing with other children. On cross-examination, defendant admitted he lied about not hitting child.


Gerber v. State, 2016 WL 6395627 (Ga. Ct. App.). Defendant appealed conviction for aggravated sodomy and five counts of sexual exploitation of children. As matter of first impression, appellate court determined prosecution for sexual exploitation of children based on possession of child pornography required proof defendant knew image depicted minor. Prosecution must prove defendant knowingly possessed illicit materials.


Coleman v. State, 708 S.E.2d 638 (Ga. Ct. App. 2011). In criminal trial, defendants were prejudiced by child welfare agency caseworker’s testimony that their son was in foster care and trial court erred by denying motion for a mistrial; fact that child was in foster care could have led the jury to unfairly consider couple guilty, knowing that the juvenile court already found the home unsafe.


Galvan v. State, 768 S.E.2d 773 (Ga. Ct. App. 2015). Evidence was sufficient to support child molestation convictions, despite victim’s recanting of abuse claims against defendant, her stepfather, and testimony of victim’s mother and sister that victim told them she had lied. State introduced victim’s prior inconsistent statements detailing abuse through video recording of forensic interview, audio recording of police interview, and nurse’s testimony that physical exam of victim showed injuries consistent with penetration.



Kendrick v. State, 769 S.E.2d 621 (Ga. Ct. App. 2015). Defendant appealed aggravated child molestation conviction, claiming there was no evidence of physical injury caused by act of intercourse with 13-year-old victim. Court found sufficient evidence that victim, who was impregnated by defendant, was physically injured, even though victim believed she was in romantic relationship with defendant, did not testify that intercourse was physically injurious, and continued her pregnancy. Victim experienced pain during labor and delivery and lacked legal capacity to consent to intercourse.



Cosmo v State., 739 S.E.2d 828 (Ga. Ct. App. 2013). Defendant was improperly convicted of attempted child abuse where he corresponded with an officer posing as a mother offering sex with herself and her underage daughters. Statute encompassed online interactions with an individual believed to be a minor and defendant never took necessary steps toward enticing minors given his statements before their meeting that he was then uncomfortable with anything involving daughters.


Ford v. State, 743 S.E.2d 594 (Ga. Ct. App. 2013). Trial court properly allowed victim advocate to sit next to 11-year-old victim in criminal sex abuse trial. The court has wide discretion to control the taking of testimony and the record reflected that the judge carefully observed the advocate’s interactions during the victim’s testimony to ensure no inappropriate or prejudicial conduct.

Holcomb v. State, 762 S.E.2d 431 (Ga. Ct. App. 2014). Trial court correctly convicted defendant of child molestation and aggravated sexual battery, basing the conviction on the 12-year-old victim’s testimony. Jury was the proper source to judge whether minor victim was a credible witness and found victim witness credible. Minor testified that defendant would come into her room at night, digitally penetrate her, expose himself to her, and force her to touch his penis.



In re E.E.B.W., 733 S.E.2d 369 (Ga. Ct. App. 2012). Juvenile court had home state jurisdiction under the Uniform Child Custody and Jurisdiction Enforcement Act (UCCJEA) to take custody of child and terminate parental rights based on her residing in U.S. Earlier foreign adoption order was not an ‘original’ custody order as UCCJEA does not cover adoption. FULL SUMMARY



Beloate v. Peden, 761 S.E.2d 487 (Ga. Ct. App. 2014). Lower court properly granted maternal grandparents visitation with minor since it was in the minor’s best interest. Without the court order, it was likely visitation would be blocked by father and/or minor’s paternal grandparents. Father had physical custody of minor, and after minor’s mother passed away, minor’s counselor, maternal grandparents, and even father all agreed it would be in minor’s best interest for visitation with maternal grandparents to help minor’s grief over mother’s passing away.

Floyd v. Gibson, 771 S.E.2d 12 (Ga. Ct. App. 2015). Children were removed from mother after her drug overdose, and maternal grandmother filed for custody. Unwed father filed counterclaim for custody, and court improperly sided with grandmother without considering father’s rights. Court did not make requisite determination that children would suffer physical harm or significant, long-term emotional harm in his custody, not merely social or economic disadvantages.




In re C.H., 735 S.E.2d 291 (Ga. Ct. App. 2012). Trial court exceeded authority in sentencing juvenile to serve 30 days in a youth development center after adjudicating him delinquent on a public indecency petition. By statute, a juvenile court may only order a child be placed in a youth development center under specific conditions and adjudication was not for one of those conditions including an act that would be a felony if committed by an adult, a violent act, or for a probation revocation.


In re L. P., 749 S.E.2d 389 (Ga. Ct. App. 2013). Trial court properly admitted Facebook screenshots depicting Crip and anti-Blood references in delinquency proceedings through testimony of an officer who was part of a gang task force. Proper foundation was provided by officer as he was familiar with the youth, his street name headed the Facebook page, and the officer recognized the youth in photos on the page.



In re S.D., 728 S.E.2d 749 (Ga. Ct. App. 2012). The Georgia Court of Appeals reversed an order finding a child neglected because teenaged mother was herself in agency custody. No evidence was presented that the mother lacked an ability to adequately parent child or that child was being deprived of any necessities because of the circumstances. FULL SUMMARY


In re H.B., 749 S.E.2d 38 (Ga. Ct. App. 2013). Juvenile court erred in finding children dependent based on incident of domestic violence where mother promptly called the police and where the boyfriend was found alone at the home one time thereafter. Single violent incident was insufficient to show children were unsafe and no evidence showed children were harmed physically or emotionally; one incident of boyfriend at home alone did not show pattern of mother failing to protect children. 


In re T.S., 732 S.E.2d 541 (Ga. Ct. App. 2012). Trial court violated mother’s right to due process by removing her from the court room while her child testified, preventing her from confronting her as a witness. Although due process does not require physical presence in the courtroom (e.g., a child may be observed testifying via closed-circuit TV), parent must be able to assist counsel contemporaneously develop cross-examination.


In re J.J.,
 731 S.E.2d 766 (Ga. Ct. App. 2012). Trial court did not err in dismissing neglect petition where evidence was presented that the issues at school had been resolved by the hearing date. The court properly based its decision on the evidence of current neglect, not past or future potential deprivation.


In re M.R., 2015 WL 4139289 (Ga. App. Ct.). Evidence supported finding that child was dependent. Mother was homeless, and father had only visited child three times in past year and had been unemployed for almost one year at time of hearing. Father relied on his mother for financial support and housing, and was not actively seeking employment. He refused to submit to required home evaluation, which included drug test.


In re C.A.J., 771 S.E.2d 457 (Ga. Ct. App. 2015). Evidence was sufficient to support dependency finding based on mother’s failure to protect child from her husband, a convicted child molester and registered sex offender. Mother neglected child’s mental and emotional needs and failed to financially support child. Mother defended husband against child’s sexual abuse allegations and made no effort to contact family about child’s welfare after her visitation was suspended.



In re B.H.-W., 2015 WL 1839461(Ga. Ct. App.). Biological father petitioned for legitimation and placement of 10-month-old child born out of wedlock. Child had been removed from custody of minor mother, who was in child welfare agency custody. Evidence supported finding that father did not abandon his interest to develop relationship with child. Father frequently visited child in foster care, and father and paternal grandmother contacted agency multiple times during case and attended court dates.


In re L.B., 735 S.E.2d 162 (Ga. Ct. App. 2012). Juvenile court properly placed child with great-aunt based on her petition for permanent guardianship after adjudicating child dependent. Though statute required reasonable efforts be provided or found to be inappropriate under the circumstances, other sections of the statute clearly contemplated that a private party could initiate dependency proceedings. Thus, mother’s contention that statute only applied to children in agency custody lacked merit and court could have found efforts would be inappropriate.


In re A.T., 711 S.E.2d 382 (Ga. Ct. App. 2011). Trial court erred in finding children dependent where it relied primarily on inadmissible hearsay of school social worker and caseworker who recounted child’s statements that his mother tied his hands and feet together; for child’s statements of abuse to be admissible, the child had to be available to testify, yet record did not reflect that he was present in court or otherwise available.


In re R.H., 706 S.E.2d 686 (Ga. Ct. App. 2011). Any Fourth Amendment violation that resulted from admitting photographs of interior of father’s home taken during child welfare investigation that was executed as part of a search warrant did not harm father given other evidence of deprivation.


In re E.N.R., 748 S.E.2d 293 (Ga. Ct. App. 2013). Juvenile court properly adjudicated children dependent where family’s home was condemned, their mother had partial paralysis and memory deficits from a brain injury, and the father had borderline intellectual functioning, and both parents had difficulty with simple tasks such as washing clothes.


In re A.J.H., 755 S.E.2d 241 (Ga. Ct. App. 2014). Child’s paternal aunt and uncle filed a private action against mother asserting child was deprived because he was not given his four prescribed medications. Trial court improperly found the child was deprived since evidence did not show mother’s conduct fell below the requisite standard or that child suffered physically from not taking medication. Some of the child’s medications were optional and not administered because child no longer displayed symptoms. 


In re J.G., 706 S.E.2d 741 (Ga. Ct. App. 2011). Trial court did not err in adjudicating child dependent though mother had complied with case plans and made some progress where testimony indicated child was frightened of her, refused to visit, and mother did not appear to comply with psychotropic medication and had shown erratic behavior at church, school, and in court.


In re L.A., 744 S.E.2d 88 (Ga. Ct. App. 2013). After adjudicating child dependent upon finding mother physically abused child, trial court erred in entering disposition retaining child in care when it found father posed no safety threats. Court’s concern that father had not been involved in infant’s life was not a proper basis for placing the child in foster care when agency had visited his home and reported no concerns. 


In re L.R.M., 2015 WL 4114073 (Ga. Ct. App.). Trial court properly denied paternal grandmother’s request for custody and visitation with dependent child despite mother’s wish that child be placed with her. Conditions causing child welfare agency’s involvement with family remained, and mother made little progress with case plan, continued to use drugs, and failed to attend drug treatment. Grandmother knew mother was not allowed unsupervised visitation with child, yet allowed mother such visitation while child was in her care.


In re N.W., 710 S.E.2d 832 (Ga. Ct. App. 2011). Child advocate failed to show harm sufficient to require reversal of court’s dismissal of motion for an emergency hearing on placement; though county failed to provide notice five days before the child was to be moved from the foster home to a relative home, the same issues had just been considered a few days before and another result was unlikely even if the emergency hearing had been held.


In re T.B.W., 719 S.E.2d 589 (Ga. Ct. App. 2011). In medical neglect proceedings, child welfare agency made reasonable efforts to prevent removing child from biological father’s custody. Caseworker tried to facilitate visits and involved father in team meetings. Agency designed case plan for father that required mental health assessments, counseling, and parenting classes. Agency also evaluated father’s employment, home, and criminal and substance abuse history and made recommendations. Despite these efforts, the father failed to comply with his case plan by not securing stable housing and a job, failing drug screens, and not getting vaccine needed to protect children’s health.


In re D.L.T., 747 S.E.2d 880 (Ga. Ct. App. 2013). Where parents had surrendered their rights, trial court properly continued placement of children with foster parents over the competing request of grandparents because of concerns that the grandparents had failed to protect the children from known abuse before removal, allowed their father to visit while intoxicated, and because they had asked the children to be removed after a few weeks of a trial placement.


In re W.L.H., 739 S.E.2d 322 (Ga. 2013). Twelve year old whose attorney appealed dependency decision and court’s refusal to allow his full participation in hearings was not a proper party to appeal decision independent of his court appointed special advocate. Court found children are not proper parties to make decisions about their best interests because of their immaturity.


In re R.G., 745 S.E.2d 752 (Ga. Ct. App. 2013). Trial court properly determined that clear and convincing evidence supported ceasing reunification services for mother where she had continued to live and depend on her boyfriend who supplied her with drugs and had been found to have touched her child inappropriately. Though she had complied with substance abuse services, this was the only portion of the case plan she had followed, and thus did not prevent court from finding further reunification efforts would be harm the children.


In re R.B., 745 S.E.2d 677 (Ga. Ct. App. 2013). Trial court properly found child dependent based on sexual abuse against a sibling. Though mother had not been specifically ordered to remove the boyfriend from the home or relocate herself, his continued presence in the home posed a safety threat and state was not required to show current harm to the child.  


In re F.A.G.R., 761 S.E.2d 512 (Ga. Ct. App. 2014). Lower court properly declined to exercise jurisdiction over minor and find he was deprived and abused. Minor was from Honduras and illegally entered the United States as a 17 year old, and was taken in by his older cousin. While minor was in his cousin’s custody, there was no evidence of abuse or neglect. He would also turn 18 years old within two weeks of the initial petition.


In re W.L.H., 723 S.E.2d 478 (Ga. Ct. App. 2012). Youth could not maintain appeal where his guardian ad litem (GAL) did not consent or bring appeal after his motion to be present during dependency proceedings was denied. Unemancipated minor did not have standing to appeal without being represented by a GAL or next friend despite his having an attorney.



Owen v. Watts, 705 S.E.2d 852 (Ga. Ct. App. 2010). Trial court correctly issued protection order for grandmother against former foster parent who conducted surveillance and made repeated allegations to child protection and law enforcement; foster parent did not have immunity for reporting suspected child abuse because allegations were not reasonable in light of facts known to her and were not made in good faith given her volatile history of competing with the grandmother to adopt child.



Dep’t of Human Servs. v. Spruill, 751 S.E.2d 315 (Ga. 2013). Trial court properly dismissed civil complaint against child welfare workers by grandparents in case where children had not been fed by parents for several days during protective services investigation. Certain details of investigation were subject to the discretion of the agency, including whether to undress children to observe any injuries, how to react when parents were not home on attempted unannounced visits, and worker’s consideration of whether the children were in imminent danger.



In re M.F., 2015 WL 7402269 (Ga.). Unmarried father’s complaint for custody of minor daughter could fairly be read as petition to modify, vacate, or revoke permanent guardianship of child based on material change in circumstances. Father’s right to petition for modification, vacatur, or revocation was not absolutely foreclosed by prior consent to guardianship. Father acknowledged order, complained about limited rights under it, alleged his circumstances had changed, and asserted he was now able to assume responsibilities of full custody.




In re J.J.S., 741 S.E.2d 207 (Ga. Ct. App. 2013). Though there were grounds to terminate on mother who was incarcerated on child cruelty charges, juvenile court improperly terminated her rights because there was no evidence that termination would protect the child from serious harm to her well-being given that she refused to consider being adopted and continued to express a desire to be reunited.  


In re D.M., 2016 WL 6134092 (Ga. Ct. App.). Mother appealed termination of parental rights to her children. Juvenile court failed to make requisite specific findings of fact supporting decision that children’s continued dependency was likely to cause serious harm to children and termination was in their best interest. Although appellate court found sufficient evidence supported finding that children’s dependency was likely to continue or would not likely be remedied, trial court was instructed to make specific findings of fact.


In re J.V.J., 765 S.E.2d 389 (Ga. Ct. App. 2014). Child was removed from mother’s custody at birth because mother previously lost parental rights to three other children and had history of instability and drug use. Court reversed order terminating parental rights, finding lack of clear and convincing evidence that cause of child’s deprivation was likely to continue. Mother earned high school diploma, enrolled in college, and availed herself of every treatment center program offered.

In re R.E., 2015 WL 4174012 (Ga. App. Ct.). Evidence of parents’ polyamorous sexual practices was insufficient to support termination of mother’s parental rights to four children, when no evidence suggested children had been exposed to such practices. Evidence that older children may have been sexually abused was also insufficient absent evidence that mother was responsible for or complicit in abuse. Mother quit full-time job and took two part-time jobs so she could fulfill visitation and counseling duties, and although her financial resources were limited, poverty does not justify termination of parental rights.



In re A.T., 730 S.E.2d 451 (Ga. Ct. App. 2012). Trial court properly terminated father’s parental rights even though he completed most of his case plan services. Though he apparently resolved the substance abuse that primarily led to removal, his continued domestic violence, lack of visitation, and housing instability supported finding.

In re C.G., 749 S.E.2d 411 (Ga. Ct. App. 2013). Trial court erred in granting termination petition because evidence was not clear and convincing that the children’s deprivation was likely to continue where it consisted merely of arrest and a couple confirmed instances of illegal drug use, mother was scheduled to be enrolled in an inpatient substance abuse program, and reunification period had gone on less than a year.


In re A.S., 734 S.E.2d 225 (Ga. Ct. App. 2012). Hearsay statements of children were properly admitted through testimony of the foster parent in termination trial. Rule allows statements both of sexual abuse suffered by the children directly or witnessed by them, as here, where they testified about abuse of their siblings.

In re C.A., 728 S.E.2d 816 (Ga. Ct. App. 2012). In case where mother contested whether she had schizophrenia and trial court found she was unable to parent because of her mental illness, trial court erred in relying on reports and testimony describing her condition because the alleged diagnosis was supported only by hearsay statements of third parties who were not subject to examination.


Alizota v. Stanfield, 765 S.E.2d 707 (Ga. Ct. App. 2014). Where father completed his case plan, termination of his parental rights was improper due to his lack of citizenship and a driver’s license, and reliance on his wife to pay the rent. Enhanced stability, convenience, and possible great opportunities if the child remained in the U.S. did not meet the standard of deprivation for termination of parental rights. FULL SUMMARY


In re T.A., 769 S.E.2d 797 (Ga. Ct. App. 2015). Evidence was sufficient to support termination of mother’s parental rights due to parental misconduct or inability. While mother completed case plan goals, she had significant cognitive deficits with no change in parenting abilities after basic parenting classes. Child had developmental issues, and expert testified that mother would be unable to care for child without constant in-home support. Mother had also previously lost custody of older child.



In re C.J.V., 746 S.E.2d 783 (Ga. Ct. App. 2013). Where mother had met many of her permanency goals including obtaining employment despite being in an economically depressed area and had relied on assistance from family to pay her bills, termination was inappropriate. Evidence did not show that mother had failed to avail herself of opportunities to provide a stable home, just that opportunities were lacking. FULL SUMMARY


In re D.P., 756 S.E.2d 207 (Ga. Ct. App. 2014). Trial court improperly terminated mother’s parental rights based solely on poverty and her inability to provide for her child. Mother, who initially sought agency’s assistance when unemployed and homeless with a 17-month old baby, diligently tried to complete court-ordered plan by securing stable employment and housing, even applying to three different jurisdictions for housing assistance.


In re C.M., 756 S.E.2d 5 (Ga. Ct. App. 2014). Trial court properly terminated parental rights and placed children with foster parents, rather than with family friend. Family friend, who mistakenly believed she was the paternal grandmother of the children, was unable to manage children’s behavior and her home was chaotic, which countered the children’s need for structure, stability, and individualized attention.


In re B.R.F., 2015 WL 1432454 (Ga. Ct. App.). Appellate court had jurisdiction to grant mother’s untimely application for discretionary review of order terminating her parental rights to child. Indigent parents are entitled to court-appointed counsel for appeals. Mother, who was indigent, received ineffective assistance of trial counsel when told she had no right to court-appointed appellate counsel, and she pursued appellate review without an attorney. After obtaining appellate counsel, she sought out-of-time appeal. 

In re S.B., 2015 WL 7306315 (Ga. Ct. App.). Unmarried father’s counsel’s failure to file legitimation petition was deficient performance in termination of parental rights proceeding, supporting finding of ineffective assistance of counsel. Failure to file petition prejudiced father by precluding him from challenging termination of his parental rights. Given father’s rehire by former employer and persistent efforts to maintain relationship with children, it is reasonably probable result of trial would have been different. 



In re S.R.C.J., 732 S.E.2d 547 (Ga. Ct. App. 2012). Trial court properly denied grandmother’s request for custody following termination of parental rights hearing or finding that it would not be in child’s best interests since she had never met the child and only expressed interest in being involved after the child had been in foster care over a year.


In re C.S., 735 S.E.2d 140 (Ga. Ct. App. 2012). Trial court erred in finding father had untreated substance abuse issues given the evidence that he had attended AA and NA meetings for many months and provided negative drug screens. Though it was true that father had not complied with the specifics of his plan, he had addressed the substantive issue, such that finding that father could not safely parent lacked support.

In re E.G.M., 2017 WL 939463 (Ga. Ct. App. 2017). Evidence supported terminating parents’ rights to three children based on parents’ failure to address their substance abuse problems. Parents’ continued substance abuse would affect the care they would provide and would harm children. Children were thriving in foster care and had bonded with their foster caregivers, who desired to adopt them. Returning children to parents’ care would likely cause regression and behavior problems.



In re C.K.S., 764 S.E.2d 559 (Ga. Ct. App. 2014). Juvenile court could not terminate father’s parental rights on basis that child was placed with someone willing to adopt and who, unlike the father, had bonded with the child when evidence did not support finding that father had not bonded with his child. Father had secured employment and completed case plan goals, and there was no evidence that child’s relationship with father was harmful to child.


In re B.W., 756 S.E.2d 25 (Ga. Ct. App. 2014). Juvenile court properly granted maternal grandmother’s petition to terminate parents’ rights based on continued deprivation. Maternal grandmother was given initial custody of child because his parents had a volatile, chaotic, and violent relationship. Grandmother showed that deprivation would continue if child was returned to his parents at the termination of parental rights hearing since the conditions supporting the earlier finding still existed. 


In re A.M., 751 S.E.2d 144 (Ga. Ct. App. 2013). Trial court did not abuse its discretion in denying parents’ motion to set aside termination order on claim that court should have provided a Mam interpreter. Parents had previously only requested a Spanish interpreter and had not expressed any confusion or objection regarding the instructions or discussions they had had with the court or agency in Spanish.



Van Leuvan v. Carlisle, 745 S.E.2d 814 (Ga. Ct. App. 2013). Superior court order lacked specific factual findings to support determination that grandparent visitation was necessary to prevent harm to the child. Mere pronouncement that legal standard was met did not comply with state statute or show threshold for third party was overcome.



Scott v. Scott, 707 S.E.2d 166 (Ga. Ct. App. 2011). Where children sued their mother for wrongful death of their father and their uncle represented them as next friend, trial court erred in not hearing claim by grandparents that uncle had a conflict of interest; trial court had discretion to substitute next friend representative if it found a conflict due to the uncle’s interests being aligned with the aunt and sister of the respondent, rather than the children.


In re E.E.B.W., 733 S.E.2d 369 (Ga. Ct. App. 2012). Juvenile court had home state jurisdiction under the Uniform Child Custody and Jurisdiction Enforcement Act (UCCJEA) to take custody of child and terminate parental rights based on her residing in U.S. Earlier foreign adoption order was not an ‘original’ custody order as UCCJEA does not cover adoption. FULL SUMMARY