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Name: In re N.B
Case #: A161425
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 1 DCA
Division: 1
Opinion Date: 07/27/2021
Subsequent History: Ordered published 8/18/2021
Summary

Terminating a guardianship by Welfare and Institutions Code section 388 petition was not error. The minor N.B. was in a guardianship with her grandmother following her parents’ unsuccessful attempts at reunification. Several years later, N.B. was removed from the grandmother due to N.B.’s emotional issues. The juvenile court found that the grandmother was not capable of meeting N.B.’s emotional needs, and terminated the guardianship. The appellate court affirmed the orders. Where a guardian is appointed at the section 366.26 hearing, the juvenile court retains jurisdiction over the minor. California Rules of Court, rule 5.740(d) provides that a petition pursuant to section 388 must be filed in the juvenile court to terminate a guardianship. Alternatively, a section 387 petition may be filed to remove a minor from the current caregiver and place the child in a more restrictive placement. Grandmother argued that the court should have followed the section 387 petition procedure, which requires an adjudicatory hearing, followed by a dispositional hearing, rather than the section 388 procedure, and that she was prejudiced by the failure to do so. The appellate court chose to break from the holding of In re Jessica C. (2007) 151 Cal.App.4th 474, which supported Grandmother’s position, as an improper interpretation of the law, and concluded that the juvenile court did not err in proceeding under section 388.

The full opinion is available on the court’s website here: https://www.courts.ca.gov/opinions/documents/A161425.PDF