Missouri Divorce & Family Law Blog

Missouri Divorce & Family Law Blog

for Missourians struggling with divorce and family law matters

Category Archives: Child Abuse

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Every child is entitled to a permanent and stable home

Posted in Child Abuse, Child Custody and Visitation, Domestic Abuse
Recent case: Termination of parental rights for failure to rectify When children are taken into protective care by the children’s division, the goal is to reunite the children and the parent(s).  However, parental rights can ultimately be terminated because of a failure of the parents to remedy the cause(s) of the children to be taken … Continue Reading

Express allegations of abuse or neglect required for mandatory appointment of Guardian Ad Litem; Alternating weekend parenting plan is joint physical custody.

Posted in Child Abuse, Custody and Visitation, Divorce, Guardian Ad Litem, Modifications
Recent case:  CJWQ vs. SJQ Missouri Court of Appeals, Western District – WD74342 Mother  appeals the circuit court’s judgment modifying the dissolution decree from her marriage to Father. Mother asserts that the court erred when: (1) it failed to appoint a guardian ad litem pursuant to section 452.423, RSMo Cum. Supp. 2011, claiming that Mother … Continue Reading

Case Law Update: No Child Abandonment Without Knowledge

Posted in Adoption and Guardianship, Child Abuse, Custody and Visitation, Divorce, Domestic Abuse, Paternity
Recent Ruling: Termination of parental rights requires proof of statutory grounds by clear, convincing and cogent evidence, and proof of child’s best interest by a preponderance of the evidence. In an action to terminate parental rights, the statutory ground of abandonment means six pre-petition months of “a voluntary and intentional relinquishment of the custody of … Continue Reading

Child Neglect Shown in recent Decision

Posted in Adoption and Guardianship, Child Abuse, Child Support, Custody and Visitation, Divorce, Guardian Ad Litem, military divorce, Military Family Law, Modifications, Paternity
In a recent decision by the Missouri Court of Appeals, clear, cogent and convincing evidence supported a finding of neglect in protecting the child, maintaining the household, and supervising the child.  "If a parent is unable to pay for all of a child’s financial needs, he or she has a duty to provide as much … Continue Reading

Recent ruling: Termination of parental rights unsupported

Posted in Child Abuse, Custody and Visitation, Domestic Abuse, Guardian Ad Litem, Legal Proceedings, Marriage and Family, Paternity
The statute provides that, when considering whether to terminate parental rights, the circuit court must consider certain factors, as to which evidence was either absent; less than clear, cogent and convincing; or favored the parent.  Factors including whether mental condition will improve does not mean intelligence.  Whatever else may be appropriate, judgment terminating parental rights … Continue Reading

Recent Case: Termination Of Incarcerated Parent’s Rights Reversed

Posted in Child Abuse, Child Support, Custody and Visitation, Divorce, Financial Issues, Legal Separation, military divorce, Military Family Law, Modifications, Paternity
In a recent termination of parental rights case, the Court stated that statutory grounds of abandonment, neglect, and unfitness require clear, cogent, and convincing evidence. The Incarcerated parent’s diligent efforts at maintaining contact with child refuted such allegations. The “Child may suffer from Father’s absence, but getting in trouble before he knew about Child is no … Continue Reading

The Financial Aspects of Divorce: Why It usually IS “All About The Money”

Posted in Alimony / Maintenance, Assets and Debts, Child Abuse, Divorce, Financial Issues, Legal Separation, military divorce, Property Division, Retirement Plans and Division
I can’t think of how many times that I have had a client tell me, regardless of what the issue is that is in dispute, that the opposing party is “just worried about money” or that it is “all about the money” for him or her, and that is their sole motivation in the case. Or maybe … Continue Reading

Missouri Legislature passes Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement Act (UCCJEA) and eliminates requirement that social security numbers be included in family law pleadings and judgments

Posted in Child Abuse, Child Support, Custody and Visitation, Divorce, Legal Proceedings, Modifications, Paternity
Newly passed legislation will finally enact the Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement Act as of August 28, 2009. Missouri was one of only three states that had not yet enacted the UCCJEA. This act will replace the current Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction Act (UCCJA). The act limits child custody jurisdiction to one state, avoids competing … Continue Reading

SB 25: New Legislation affecting child support and modifying how long non-custodial parents have to pay child support for kids in college

Posted in Child Abuse, Child Support
Senate Bill 25, set to take effect on August 28 of this year, was delivered to governor Matt Blunt on May 30, 2007.  The Bill affects various statutes pertaining to child protection, enforcement of child support, and termination of child support, The summary of the bill is as follows:              CHILD ABUSE AND NEGLECT INVESTIGATIONS … Continue Reading

Courts Bulletin:Child Custody

Posted in Child Abuse, Custody and Visitation
Evidence of abuse of a party must be allowed in child custody proceeding. KRP, a Minor by her Next Friend, Gleanice Brown, and Gleanice Brown, Individually, Respondent, v. Curtis Penyweit, Appellant, No. 66003 (Mo. App. W.D., April 24, 2007), Smith, J.   The parties were vying for custody in this paternity action. Father attempted to introduce … Continue Reading