Mother and father appealed from the termination of parental rights. The Court of Appeal conditionally reversed and remanded for ICWA error. The Court found that notice should have been provided to all Pomo-affiliated tribes and that the ICWA notice had omitted information regarding the maternal grandparents and the maternal great-grandmother.

In an appeal from an order terminating his parental rights, father argued that the Department and juvenile court failed to sufficiently investigate and provide adequate notice as required under the ICWA. As a preliminary matter, the Court stated that father had not waived his right to appeal the order terminating parental rights by submitting to the recommendation as ICWA notice requirements could not be waived by the parent. The Court then found that the Department had not adequately discharged its duty of inquiry which hindered its ability to provide adequate notice to the tribes. The error was not harmless because it was unknown what a proper inquiry might have revealed.

In an appeal from the termination of parental rights, father claimed that the Department failed to comply with ICWA notice requirements. The Court of Appeal agreed that the Department neglected to contact all the appropriate tribes. Furthermore, it was the duty of the social worker to seek out additional information, not the obligation of family members to volunteer it.

In an appeal from the termination of parental rights, mother argued that an adequate inquiry under the ICWA was not made. The Court of Appeal agreed, finding that the juvenile court did not satisfy its initial duty of inquiry for father. Mother also filed a CCP section 909 motion requesting that the Court take evidence on appeal regarding her Indian heritage. The Court of Appeal did not grant the section 909 motion but stated that the offer of proof was sufficient for a limited remand to obtain further information from mother and father and to give notice to the pertinent tribes if necessary.

In this appeal from the termination of parental rights, father raised the beneficial relationship exception and ICWA violations. The Court of Appeal found that the adequacy of the ICWA investigation  was uncertain and the record failed to show the juvenile court ruled on the ICWA issue. The matter was remanded to the juvenile court for ICWA compliance.

In this appeal from the termination of parental rights, the Court of Appeal found non compliance with the ICWA stating that there was nothing in the record to suggest the Department made any inquiries. The Department filed a motion to dismiss the appeal as moot arguing that the juvenile court had subsequently made an order finding compliance with ICWA. The Court denied the motion finding that the juvenile court acted in excess of its jurisdiction in revisiting the termination order while it was being reviewed on appeal.

In this appeal from the termination of parental rights, the Court of Appeal reversed and remanded the matter to the juvenile court for compliance with the inquiry and notice provisions of the ICWA. The Agency conceded that limited remand was necessary to inquire of all maternal relatives for whom the Agency had contact information about their knowledge of possible Indian ancestry.

On appeal from the order of the juvenile court terminating his parental rights, father argued that the juvenile court failed to comply with the inquiry and notice requirements of the ICWA. The Court concluded that the information about father’s Indian ancestry was sufficient to trigger a duty of further inquiry. The Court emphasized that the duty of ICWA inquiry was affirmative and continuing. Even though the Department had access to multiple members of the minor’s extended family who could have been questioned about father’s claim of Indian ancestry, the Department relied solely on its initial failure to obtain additional information for its conclusion that the ICWA did not apply in this case.

In this appeal from jurisdictional and dispositional findings, the Court of Appeal found ICWA errors due to the Bureau’s failure to notice all federally recognized Apache tribes, not just the Mescalero tribe. With respect to its duty of inquiry, the Court stated the Agency should conduct a meaningful investigation of maternal grandmother’s purported Indian ancestry, making genuine efforts to locate family members who have more information. The Court agreed with mother that the record did not contain evidence beyond a reasonable doubt to support the subdivision (b) allegation based on mother’s alleged chronic untreated mental health condition. Even though other jurisdictional allegations were sustained, the Court reversed as to the subdivision (b) finding because it could have consequences for mother beyond jurisdiction. The Court also struck the references to untreated mental health in the section 300, subdivision (j) allegations. The Court agreed that the juvenile court did not give mother the required advisements or obtain a personal waiver from her but found that the error was harmless beyond a reasonable doubt.

The Court of Appeal reversed the order of the juvenile court terminating parental rights due to the failure of the Department to comply with the notice requirements of the Indian Child Welfare Act. The Department sent notice to some of the Sioux and Apache tribes but not all of them. The Court of Appeal remanded the case for the Department to notify the remaining Sioux and Apache tribes.

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