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In re C.D.

Court of Appeals of Iowa

October 10, 2018

IN THE INTEREST OF C.D., Minor Child, L.D., Father, Petitioner-Appellee, S.P., Mother, Respondent-Appellant.

          Appeal from the Iowa District Court for Polk County, Lawrence P. McLellan, Judge.

         The mother appeals the district court's grant of the father's petition to terminate her parental rights to their minor child. AFFIRMED.

          Kelsey L. Knight of Carr Law Firm, PLC, Des Moines, for appellant.

          Cathleen J. Siebrecht of Siebrecht Law Firm, Des Moines, for appellee.

          Chira Corwin of Corwin Law Firm LLC, Des Moines, guardian ad litem for minor child.

          Considered by Vaitheswaran, P.J., and Doyle and Mullins, JJ.

          VAITHESWARAN, PRESIDING JUDGE.

         The father of a child petitioned to terminate the mother's parental rights. The district court granted the petition after finding the mother abandoned the child. See Iowa Code § 600A.8(3) (2016). On appeal, the mother contends the record lacks clear and convincing evidence to support the finding and termination was not in the child's best interests.

         A parent is deemed to have abandoned a child who is six months old or older "unless the parent maintains substantial and continuous or repeated contact with the child as demonstrated by contribution toward support of the child of a reasonable amount, according to the parent's means, and as demonstrated by any of the following":

(1) Visiting the child at least monthly when physically and financially able to do so and when not prevented from doing so by the person having lawful custody of the child.
(2) Regular communication with the child or with the person having the care or custody of the child, when physically and financially unable to visit the child or when prevented from visiting the child by the person having lawful custody of the child.
(3)Openly living with the child for a period of six months within the one-year period immediately preceding the termination of parental rights hearing and during that period openly holding himself or herself out to be the parent of the child.

Id. § 600A.8(3)(b).

         Our de novo review of the record reveals the following facts. The child was born in 2006. Pursuant to a custody decree filed in 2007, the mother obtained physical care of the child and the father exercised regular visitation. In 2013, the decree was modified to grant the ...


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