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Case No. 23-2011

For summaries from opinions prior to August, 2018, view PDF versions here

In re C.S., Minor Child


B.S., Father-Appellant

M.K., Mother-Appellant

Attorney for Appellant Father

Amanda Demichelis

Attorney for Appellant Mother

Ling Harl

Attorney for Appellee State

Tamara Knight, Assistant Attorney General

Guardian ad Litem

Lisa Ann Allison

Court of Appeals

Court of Appeals Opinion

Opinion Number:
Date Published:
Feb 21, 2024

            Appeal from the Iowa District Court for Polk County, Romonda Belcher, District Associate Judge.  AFFIRMED ON BOTH APPEALS.  Considered by Greer, P.J., and Schumacher and Ahlers, JJ.  Opinion by Ahlers, J.  Special Concurrence by Greer, P.J.  (12 pages)

            A mother and father separately appeal the termination of their respective parental rights to their child.  Both argue the Iowa Department of Health and Human Services failed to make reasonable efforts toward reunification and termination is not in the child’s best interests due to the strength of the parent-child bonds.  OPINION HOLDS: The department made reasonable efforts to facilitate reunification.  Termination is in the child’s best interests, and neither parent established a parent-child bond strong enough to forgo termination.  SPECIAL CONCURRENCE ASSERTS: I believe that the mother properly preserved her argument that the department failed to provide reasonable efforts when it provided her with a bus pass in light of her trauma with riding the bus system.  But, because the failure to address the issue with the bus pass did not impact the mother’s visitations, I agree with the majority that we should affirm the termination of the mother’s parental rights.

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