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In re Z.F.

Court of Appeals of Iowa

March 12, 2014

IN THE INTEREST OF Z.F., Minor Child, C.F., Father, Appellant, M.I., Mother, Appellant

Editorial Note:

This decision is published in table format in the North Western Reporter.

Appeal from the Iowa District Court for Polk County, Colin J. Witt, District Associate Judge. C.F. and M.I. appeal the district court order terminating their parental rights.

Magdalena Reese of Cooper, Goedicke, Reimer & Reese, West Des Moines, for appellant-father.

Susan R. Stockdale, Des Moines, for appellant-mother.

Thomas J. Miller, Attorney General, Janet L. Hoffman, Assistant Attorney General, John P. Sarcone, County Attorney, and Susan Cox, Assistant County Attorney, for appellee.

Erin Mayfield of Youth Law Center, Des Moines, attorney and guardian ad litem for minor child.

Considered by Potterfield, P.J., and Doyle and Bower, JJ.

OPINION

BOWER, J.

C.F. and M.I. appeal the district court order terminating their parental rights. The parents claim the district court should have granted concurrent jurisdiction so a guardianship could have been established for the child. C.F., the father, also claims there were insufficient grounds to support termination of his rights and statutory exceptions to termination apply. We find termination of both parent's rights is in the child's best interests, we affirm.

I. Background Facts and Proceedings

C.F. and M.I. are the parents of Z.F.[1] The child was removed from the home on November 7, 2012, because authorities were unable to check on the welfare of the child following allegations the mother, M.I., was using drugs. At the time of removal, the father, C.F., was incarcerated. C.F. remained incarcerated throughout this case. After a removal hearing the child was placed with the paternal grandmother.

The child was found to be in need of assistance during a hearing on January 8, 2013. During a permanency hearing on May 28, 2013, the court found the child could be returned to M.I. if certain behavioral changes were made. The State filed a petition to terminate parental rights after those changes did not occur.

During the termination hearing, both parents asked the court to consider allowing concurrent jurisdiction so a guardianship could be established. The goal of the concurrent jurisdiction request was to provide both parents with additional ...


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