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Name: In re Courtney P.
Case #: B156495
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 2 DCA
Division: 3
Opinion Date: 09/26/2002
Subsequent History: None

At a Welfare and Institutions Code section 366.21 hearing, the juvenile court terminated mother’s reunification services, and denied her request for a continuance and a contested hearing. The order was made in accordance with the recommendations in a report which had not been served on mother or her counsel until the morning of the hearing. Since this was contrary to the express requirement of section 366.21, which is that the report must be served at least 10 days prior to the hearing date, reversal of the order was required. The 10-day requirement is mandatory and obligatory; any party who did not receive the report at least 10 days before the hearing must be granted a continuance or must expressly waive her right to timely service. Here, mother did not have reasonable notice of the issues in the report, and therefore no opportunity to prepare to rebut the evidence within it, there was not only a violation of the statute, but of mother’s constitutionally required due process rights.