Family Matters Law Group P.A.
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Dependency and Termination of Parental Rights

Sometimes parents in Dependency Court get served with a Petition for Termination of Parental Rights. In Florida, there are 12 statutory grounds upon which the Court might terminate parental rights if proven by clear and convincing evidence. See Fla. Stat., s. 39.806.

(a)A voluntarily executed written surrender of the child.


(c)The continuing involvement of the parent threatens the life, safety, well-being, or physical, mental, or emotional health of the child.

(d)The parent of a child is incarcerated and either:

1. The period of incarceration will constitute a substantial period of time before the child turns 18; or

2. The incarcerated parent has been determined to be a violent career criminal, a habitual violent felony offender, a sexual predator; has been convicted of first degree or second degree murder or sexual battery that constitutes a capital, life, or first degree felony violation; or has been convicted of an offense in another jurisdiction which is substantially similar to one of the above; or

3. The court determines that continuing the parental relationship would be harmful.

(e) A child has been adjudicated dependent, a case plan has been filed, and:

1. The child continues to be abused, neglected, or abandoned by the parent.

2. The parent has materially breached the case plan.

(f) The parent engaged in egregious conduct or failed to prevent egregious conduct that threatens the life, safety, or physical, mental, or emotional health of the child or the child's sibling.

(g) The parent has subjected the child or another child to aggravated child abuse, sexual battery or sexual abuse, or chronic abuse.

(h) The parent has committed the murder, manslaughter, aiding or abetting the murder, or conspiracy or solicitation to murder the other parent or another child, or a felony battery that resulted in serious bodily injury to the child or to another child.

(i) The parental rights of a sibling of the child have been terminated involuntarily.

(j) The parent has a history of extensive, abusive, and chronic use of alcohol or a controlled substance and have refused or failed to complete available treatment during the 3-year period immediately preceding the filing of the petition for termination of parental rights.

(k) A test administered at birth that indicated that the child's body contained any amount of alcohol or a controlled substance, and the biological mother of the child had at least one other child who was adjudicated dependent after a finding of harm to the child's health or welfare due to exposure to a controlled substance or alcohol.

(l) On three or more occasions the child or another child of the parent has been placed in out-of-home care.

Contact us right away to help with your dependency case and preserve your parental rights.

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