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In the Matter of HT

In the Matter of HT, 2015 MT 41 (Feb. 10, 2015) (Baker, J.) (5-0, aff’d and rev’d) 

Issue: (1) Whether the termination of Mother’s parental rights must be reversed because the district court failed to hold an adjudicatory hearing that complied with § 42-3-437, MCA; and (2) whether the district court’s failure to follow statutory procedural requirements subject to the Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA) requires reversal.

Short Answer: (1) No; (2) yes. The Court reverses and remands for entry of a new order on the termination of Mother’s parental rights using the proper standard.

Affirmed in part, reversed and remanded in part

Facts: Montana DPHHS petitioned for emergency protective services for 7-year-old HT in October 2012 on the basis of domestic violence between Mother and her boyfriend as well as Mother’s drug use.…

In the Matter of DA and MA

In the Matter of DA and MA, 2013 MT 191 (July 16, 2013) (5-0) (Morris, J.)

Issues: (1) Whether DHHS made sufficient efforts under the Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA) to reunite mother and the children; (2) whether DHHS provided sufficient evidence that reuniting children with mother would cause serious physical or emotional damage to the children; (3) whether the district court properly determined that mother had stipulated to the treatment plan; and (4) whether all stipulations in ICWA involuntary termination proceedings must be in writing.

Short Answers: (1) Yes; (2) yes; (3) yes, and (4) no.

Affirmed

In the Matter of DSB and DSB

In the Matter of DSB and DSB, 2013 MT 112 (April 30, 2013) (5-0) (McGrath, C.J.)

Issue: (1) Whether the district court properly concluded that birth father JH’s treatment plans were appropriate, and (2) whether the state presented sufficient evidence to terminate JH’s parental rights under the Indian Child Welfare Act.

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

Affirmed