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Name: Christopher D. v. Superior Court
Case #: D062170
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 4 DCA
Division: 1
Opinion Date: 09/20/2012
Summary

Although services provided to father while incarcerated were reasonable despite the lack of visitation with the minor, services were not reasonable during the period in which father was in a drug rehab program. In his appeal from the six-month review hearing, father contended that the court erred in finding that reasonable services had been offered, because he was not given visitation with the minor while he was incarcerated, and had only limited visitation with her while in a rehabilitation program. The appellate court found that reasonable services were offered to father during the time he was incarcerated. Visitation in the prison environment, with the minor’s demonstrated fears and anxieties, was detrimental to her. However, the Department did not make a good faith effort to provide father with reasonable visitation during his confinement in the residential drug treatment program. The social worker’s reasoning that she was “too busy” and that the program was “too far” did not provide substantial evidence that the Department exercised a good faith effort to provide the court-ordered visitation. Further, the court’s reinstatement of visitation after the termination of services did not render the error harmless. Therefore, the writ petition filed by father was granted and the 366.26 hearing vacated.