In re S.V, 22-0283

CourtCourt of Appeals of Iowa
Writing for the CourtMAY, PRESIDING JUDGE.
PartiesIN THE INTEREST OF S.V., Minor Child, T.S., Mother, Appellant.
Docket Number22-0283
Decision Date27 April 2022

IN THE INTEREST OF S.V., Minor Child, T.S., Mother, Appellant.

No. 22-0283

Court of Appeals of Iowa

April 27, 2022


Appeal from the Iowa District Court for Warren County, Brendan Greiner, District Associate Judge.

A mother appeals the termination of her parental rights.

Yvonne C. Naanep, Des Moines, for appellant mother.

Thomas J. Miller, Attorney General, and Mary A. Triick, Assistant Attorney General, for appellee State.

Magdalena Reese of the Juvenile Public Defender Office, Des Moines, attorney and guardian ad litem for minor child.

Considered by May, P.J., and Greer and Chicchelly, JJ.

1

MAY, PRESIDING JUDGE.

A mother appeals the termination of her parental rights to her child, S.V.[1]She challenges the statutory grounds and contends the juvenile court should have applied a permissive exception to termination to instead establish a guardianship. We affirm.

We review termination proceedings de novo. In re Z.P., 948 N.W.2d 518, 522 (Iowa 2020). "We will uphold an order terminating parental rights where there is clear and convincing evidence of the statutory grounds for termination. Evidence is clear and convincing when there is no serious or substantial doubt as to the correctness of the conclusions of law drawn from the evidence." In re T.S., 868 N.W.2d 425, 431 (Iowa Ct. App. 2015) (internal citation omitted).

We generally use a three-step analysis to review the termination of a parent's rights. In re A.S., 906 N.W.2d 467, 472 (Iowa 2018). We consider: (1) whether grounds for termination have been established, (2) whether termination is in the child's best interest, and (3) whether we should exercise any of the permissive exceptions to termination. Id. at 472-73. Then we address any additional claims raised by the parents. In re K.M., No. 19-1637, 2020 WL 110408, at *1 (Iowa Ct. App. Jan. 9, 2020).

We first address the mother's challenge to the statutory grounds for termination. Here, the juvenile court terminated the mother's rights to S.V. pursuant to Iowa Code section 232.116(1)(h) (2021). It authorizes termination when:

(1) The child is three years of age or younger
2
(2) The child has been adjudicated a child in need of assistance pursuant to section 232.96
(3)The child has been removed from the physical custody of the child's parents for at least six months of the last twelve months, or for the last six consecutive months and any trial period at home has been less than thirty days.
(4) There is clear and convincing evidence that the child cannot be returned to the custody of the child's parents as provided in section 232.102 at the present time.

Iowa Code § 232.116 (1)(h). We find these elements satisfied. S.V. was fourteen months old at the time of termination. He had been...

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