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Name: In re C.D.
Case #: B157482
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 2 DCA
Division: 7
Opinion Date: 07/07/2003
Subsequent History: None
Summary

In this appeal from a dispositional order, the father claimed two errors in notice under the Indian Child Welfare Act, 25 U.S.C. 1901. First, the parents had noted prior to dispositional hearing Indian heritage in the Blackfeet and Cherokee Tribes. Notice was sent only to the Bureau of Indian Affairs, the Blackfeet Tribe, and two of the three federally-recognized Cherokee Tribes. Second, the forms, “Notice of Involuntary Child Custody Proceeding” (SOC 319) sent to the Blackfeet Tribe and “Request for Confirmation of Child’s Status as Indian” (SOC 318) sent to the BIA were deficient under BIA guidelines, 25 CFR sec. 23.11, subd. (d)(3), in that it had no place to fill out the name of the grandparent. As to the first contention, the court found that all three Cherokee tribes did not have to be notified because the Bureau of Indian Affairs was notified. The court addressed the second issue as a matter of public concern notwithstanding the subsequent correction of the notice to the Blackfeet by the social services agency, and stated that SOC 319 is in fact deficient because it contains no place for the names of the child’s grandparents. Also, neither form has a space for providing names of other relatives or the place of death of a relative. As these are “required” forms, the court recommended that the California Health and Welfare Agency and Department of Social Services make changes on the forms so that all needed information will be provided on one form.