Posts tagged "S.M."

S.M., et al. v. M.P., et al. (Lawyers Weekly No. 11-089-17)

NOTICE:  All slip opinions and orders are subject to formal revision and are superseded by the advance sheets and bound volumes of the Official Reports.  If you find a typographical error or other formal error, please notify the Reporter of Decisions, Supreme Judicial Court, John Adams Courthouse, 1 Pemberton Square, Suite 2500, Boston, MA, 02108-1750; (617) 557-1030;   15-P-1047                                       Appeals Court   S.M. & another[1]  vs.  M.P. & another.[2]     No. 15-P-1047.   Bristol.     April 12, 2016. – July 14, 2017.   Present:  Green, Trainor, & Milkey, JJ.     Adoption, Visitation rights.  Minor, Adoption, Visitation rights.  Parent and Child, Adoption.  Jurisdiction, Juvenile Court, Equitable.  Juvenile Court, Jurisdiction.  Contract, Visitation rights, Condition, Implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing.       Complaint in equity filed in the Bristol County Division of the Juvenile Court Department on July 14, 2014.   The case was heard by Siobhan E. Foley, J.     Harold N. Robertson for the defendants.     TRAINOR, J.  The plaintiffs are the biological parents of two children whom the defendants have adopted.  At the time the plaintiffs (biological parents) surrendered their parental rights, they entered into open adoption agreements with the defendants (adoptive parents) that allowed for continued visitation on certain specified terms.[3]  After the adoptive parents notified the biological parents that they were terminating visitation under the agreements, the biological parents filed an equity complaint for noncompliance with the adoption agreements, seeking their specific performance.  Following a hearing, a Juvenile Court judge ruled in the biological parents’ favor, while at the same time ordering them to discontinue a particular practice that the adoptive parents opposed.  On the adoptive parents’ appeal, we vacate the judge’s order and remand the matter for further proceedings. Background.  The older child, Abby,[4] was born on June 2, 2008.  From about two weeks after her birth until thirteen months old, she lived with a cousin.  At age thirteen months, she was placed with her now parents, who adopted her when she was about three and one-half years old.   She has diagnoses of fetal alcohol syndrome, neurosensory hearing loss, and anxiety.  She uses hearing aids; she has had physical therapy and occupational therapy services; she is followed by a speech therapist; and she has been involved with a counselor at school. The child was subject to a care and protection petition brought by the Department of Children and Families (DCF) in the Bristol County Division of the Juvenile Court Department.  That matter was ultimately concluded with the biological parents and the adoptive parents executing an open adoption agreement. On January 1, 2012, the biological parents had a second child, Betsy.[5]  She was born with neonatal abstinence syndrome and was […]


Posted by Massachusetts Legal Resources - July 14, 2017 at 3:43 pm

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