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Posted by: Tanja Trezise on Jun 18, 2012

Court: TN Court of Appeals

Attorneys 1:

Laura A. Stewart, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellant, Faith R.

Attorneys 2:

Robert E. Cooper, Jr., Attorney General and Reporter, and Joshua Davis Baker, Assistant Attorney General, for the appellee, the Tennessee Department of Children’s Services.

Kelli Barr Summers, Brentwood, Tennessee, Guardian ad litem.

Judge(s): CLEMENT

A mother appeals the termination of her parental rights to one child. The trial court found two grounds for termination, abandonment and persistence of conditions leading to the child’s removal from the mother’s home. The finding of abandonment was based on the mother’s incarceration at the time of the filing of the petition to terminate and because the mother engaged in conduct prior to incarceration that exhibits a wanton disregard for the welfare of the child, as provided in Tennessee Code Annotated § 36-1-102(1)(A)(iv). The trial court also found termination was in the child’s best interest due to the fact that the mother lacked a meaningful relationship with the child, that the mother failed to make adjustments to her home and lifestyle to make it safe for a child, and that the child was happy and healthy in her foster home of over two years such that removal would have a detrimental impact on the child’s emotional and psychological condition. We affirm.