It wasn’t all bad

The Texas 85th Legislative Session wasn’t all bad for families caught in the web of CPS.  HB 7 amends one of grounds for terminating parental rights by making it a little harder for courts to terminate parental rights.  Most CPS cases include a court order requiring the parent(s) to participate in “services”.  These services may be random drug tests, counseling, parenting classes, “stable” housing, and/or “stable” employment.  Until HB 7, courts could (and did) terminate parental rights for ANY non-compliance with a service plan, i.e. not showing up for a drug test or not completing counseling. Now, if the parent(s) can show that a good effort was made to comply, and that failure to comply was not attributable to any fault of the parent, termination based upon noncompliance with a court ordered service plan may be avoided.

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Alison J. Meyers

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