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Posted by: Landry Butler on Sep 23, 2016

Court: TN Court of Appeals

Attorneys 1:

Nikolas Vaselopulos, Greeneville, Tennessee, for the appellant, Timothy S.

Attorneys 2:

T. Wood Smith, Greeneville, Tennessee, for the appellee, Christopher M. and Micah M.

Judge(s): DINKINS

The custodians of a child filed a petition in Greene County Circuit Court to terminate the parental rights of the Father to the child, who had resided with the Custodians since birth; at the time of the hearing on the petition, the Father was incarcerated in Florida. Following a three-day hearing extending over one month, the court entered an order holding that Father failed to visit or support the child within the four months preceding his incarceration and terminating Father’s rights on the grounds of abandonment. Father appeals, asserting that the conduct of the hearing denied him his due process right to meaningfully participate in the termination proceeding and that the record does not support the determination that he willfully failed to visit or support his child. Finding no error, we affirm the judgment of the trial court.