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In re JWM and AKM

In re JWM and AKM, 2015 MT 231 (Aug. 11, 2015) (Cotter, J.) (5-0, aff’d)

Issue: (1) Whether substantial evidence existed to support termination of biological father’s parental rights, and (2) whether father was adequately represented at hearing.

Short Answer: (1) Yes, and (2) yes.


Facts: CM and JM are the biological parents of AKM and JWM, born in 2007 and 2008. Following their 2009 divorce in Colorado, CM moved to Montana with the children. She registered the Colorado judgment in Cascade County in December 2011. In June 2012, CM married RH, who wants to adopt the children.

The Colorado divorce decree ordered JM to submit to monthly drug testing and provide the results to CM. If he failed a test or did not submit the results to CM, hs would relinquish visitation until he provided the results of a clean test.…