The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

National News

July 6, 2012

Woman facing loss of her children wasn’t properly notified, Texas court rules

AUSTIN, Texas — State child-protection workers improperly relied on a newspaper ad to notify a Dallas mother about an upcoming trial to take away her four children, the Texas Supreme Court ruled Friday.

Parental rights - “far more precious than any property right” - cannot be terminated unless the courts and state workers exercise a high degree of diligence, the unanimous Supreme Court ruled.

That standard was not met when Child Protective Services published a classified ad to notify Lamia Raibon about her pending trial in 2007 - particularly because Raibon wasn’t that hard to find, the court said.

Serving notice by publication is a last resort typically reserved for lawsuits involving somebody who is missing or unknown, but Raibon had met with a CPS caseworker and attended two court hearings around the time state officials moved to end her parental rights, the court noted.

“Service by publication deprived (Raibon) of due process,” Chief Justice Wallace Jefferson wrote for the court. “It was both possible and practicable to more adequately warn (Raibon) of the impending termination of her parental rights.” But the court stopped short of ordering a new trial for Raibon, who was accused of physically abusing her children and who tested positive for methamphetamine at the birth of her youngest child.

Instead, the court sought to balance Raibon’s rights with her responsibilities, returning her case to a Dallas trial judge with orders to employ a two-part test to determine if she is entitled to a new trial.

First, the judge must determine if Raibon waived her right to a new trial by waiting for two years to file suit challenging the loss of her children, who are identified only by their initials in court records.

Second, the judge must weigh whether a new trial would infringe on the “substantial interest” her children, now almost five years older, and their new family have in maintaining the court’s final judgment.

Although the children, Raibon and CPS “share an interest in a quick and final decision,” Jefferson wrote, “finality cannot trump a parent’s constitutional right to be heard.” “(Raibon) is entitled to a new trial unless she unreasonably delayed in seeking relief after learning of the judgment against her, and granting relief would impair another party’s substantial reliance on the judgment,” he added.

The case, 11-0282, was styled “In the Interest of ER, JB, EG and CL, Children.”

 

1
Text Only
National News
  • Salmonella decline seen in food poisoning report

    The government’s latest report card on food poisoning shows a dip in salmonella cases but an increase in illnesses from bacteria in raw shellfish.

    April 18, 2014

  • Judge in gay marriage case asks pointed questions

    A judge in Colorado who will play a pivotal role deciding whether gays should be allowed to wed in the United States asked pointed questions Thursday about whether Oklahoma can legally ban the unions.

    April 17, 2014

  • Obama shows skepticism on Russia in Ukraine

    President Barack Obama conveyed skepticism Thursday about Russian promises to de-escalate a volatile situation in Ukraine, and said the United State and its allies are ready to impose fresh sanctions if Moscow doesn’t make good on its commitments.

    April 17, 2014

  • Cyber cops: Target hackers may take years to find

    Secret Service investigators say they are close to gaining a full understanding of the methods hackers used to breach Target’s computer systems last December.

    April 17, 2014

  • Court to weigh challenge to ban on campaign lies

    As political campaigns begin to heat up, the Supreme Court is deciding whether false accusations and mudslinging made during an election can be punished as a crime.

    April 16, 2014

  • Auto Show Nissan Hot _Cast.jpg Hot models at this year’s New York Auto Show

    With more than 1 million visitors annually, the New York International Auto Show is one of the most important shows for the U.S. auto industry.

    April 16, 2014 3 Photos

  • Transportation Blues 2.jpg Congress is giving states the transportation blues

    On the road in a tour bus this week, the U.S. transportation secretary is spreading some bad news: the government’s Highway Trust Fund is nearly broke.

    April 15, 2014 2 Photos

  • Report: Russia withheld intel before Boston attack

    A yearlong review of information the U.S. intelligence community had prior to the Boston Marathon bombing found that the investigation could have been more thorough.

    April 11, 2014

  • Obama Health Secretary.jpg Obama announces Sebelius resignation, successor

    President Barack Obama praised outgoing Health and Human Secretary Kathleen Sebelius for helping to steer his health care law’s comeback after a rocky rollout, even as he nominated a successor aimed at helping the White House move past the political damage.

    April 11, 2014 1 Photo

  • Police seek driver in deadly Florida day care crash

    As mourners trickled by Thursday to honor the 4-year-old girl who was killed and 14 others injured in a crash at a Florida day care, authorities scoured the state for the driver they said fled in the vehicle that caused the fatal wreck.

    April 10, 2014

Facebook
Poll

Missouri Republicans are considering a new approach to prevent federal agents from enforcing laws the state considers to be infringements on gun rights: barring them from future careers in state law enforcement agencies. Do you think this proposal has merit?

Yes
No
     View Results
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
NDN Video
Raw: Greeks Celebrate Easter With "Rocket War" Police Question Captain, Crew on Ferry Disaster Raw: Orthodox Christians Observe Easter Rite Ceremony Marks 19th Anniversary of OKC Bombing Raw: Four French Journalists Freed From Syria Raw: Massive 7.2 Earthquake Rocks Mexico Captain of Sunken SKorean Ferry Arrested Raw: Fire Destroys 3 N.J. Beachfront Homes Raw: Pope Presides Over Good Friday Mass Raw: Space X Launches to Space Station Superheroes Descend on Capitol Mall Man Charged in Kansas City Highway Shootings Obama Awards Navy Football Trophy Anti-semitic Leaflets Posted in Eastern Ukraine Raw: Magnitude-7.2 Earthquake Shakes Mexico City Ceremony at MIT Remembers One of Boston's Finest Raw: Students Hurt in Colo. School Bus Crash Raw: Church Tries for Record With Chalk Jesus Raw: Faithful Celebrate Good Friday Worldwide Deadly Avalanche Sweeps Slopes of Mount Everest