Articles Posted in North Carolina Supreme Court

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Following a termination of parental rights (TPR) hearing, the trial court entered an order terminating both parents' parental rights to J.H.K. and J.D.K. The father appealed, arguing that the trial court erred in conducting the TPR hearing when the minor children's non-attorney guardian ad litem (GAL) volunteer was not physically present in court. The court of appeals reversed, concluding the children were not represented by a GAL at a critical stage of the termination proceedings pursuant to the juvenile code. The Supreme Court reversed and remanded, holding that a local GAL program represents a juvenile within the meaning of N.C. Gen. Stat. 7B-601 and 7B-1108 by performing the duties listed in section 7B-601 and that the non-lawyer GAL volunteer is not required to be physically present at the TPR hearing. The Court concluded that the GAL met its obligations in the present case under the statutes. View "In re J.H.K. and J.D.K." on Justia Law