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Name: In re Rebecca C.
Case #: B253065
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 2 DCA
Division: 8
Opinion Date: 08/09/2014

Mother’s history of drug use was insufficient evidence to support a jurisdiction order absent a showing of physical harm to the minor. The juvenile court issued jurisdictional orders based on its finding that mother had a history of substance abuse which made her incapable of care for her teenage daughter. On appeal, mother challenged the jurisdictional findings. The appellate court reversed and remanded. Physical harm cannot be presumed from a parent’s substance abuse. Here, there was sufficient evidence to show that mother had a substance abuse problem. But there was insufficient evidence to support the juvenile court’s finding that the substance abuse had caused physical harm to the minor. The home was clean and there was no evidence of drugs or firearms. The minor had not been abused or neglected. The fact that mother was not on top of the minor’s homework assignments was insufficient to show physical harm.