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Name: In re H.G.
Case #: D048471
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 4 DCA
Division: 1
Opinion Date: 12/11/2006

The minor was placed with her paternal grandparents following removal from her parents. The Department subsequently moved under section 387 to move the minor from her grandparents because they permitted the father to have unauthorized contact with her. The court sustained the Department’s petition, and removed the minor. Parental rights were subsequently terminated. On appeal, the parents contended that the factual allegations in the 387 petition were not supported by substantial evidence, and that the court erred when it did not consider the relative placement criteria under section 361.3. They also contested the termination of parental rights. The Department alleged that the parents did not have standing to challenge the removal, that the order was supported by substantial evidence, and that the court “essentially” considered the placement factors listed in section 361.3. The appellate court reversed and remanded for a new section 387 hearing. The parents had standing to challenge the order. The relative placement must be evaluated under section 361.3, and the court did not do so here. Further, the trial court erred by failing to hold a separate disposition hearing to determine whether removal was required from the grandparents’ home. Because the order removing the minor from her grandparents was reversed, the challenges to the courts’ findings under section 366.26 were moot.