2017 ORS 419B.498¹
Termination of parental rights
  • petition by Department of Human Services
  • when required

(1) Except as provided in subsection (2) of this section, the Department of Human Services shall simultaneously file a petition to terminate the parental rights of a child or ward’s parents and identify, recruit, process and approve a qualified family for adoption if the child or ward is in the custody of the department and:

(a) The child or ward has been in substitute care under the responsibility of the department for 15 months of the most recent 22 months;

(b) A parent has been convicted of murder of another child of the parent, voluntary manslaughter of another child of the parent, aiding, abetting, attempting, conspiring or soliciting to commit murder or voluntary manslaughter of the child or ward or of another child of the parent or felony assault that has resulted in serious physical injury to the child or ward or to another child of the parent; or

(c) A court of competent jurisdiction has determined that the child or ward is an abandoned child.

(2) The department shall file a petition to terminate the parental rights of a parent in the circumstances described in subsection (1) of this section unless:

(a) The child or ward is being cared for by a relative and that placement is intended to be permanent;

(b) There is a compelling reason, which is documented in the case plan, for determining that filing such a petition would not be in the best interests of the child or ward. Such compelling reasons include, but are not limited to:

(A) The parent is successfully participating in services that will make it possible for the child or ward to safely return home within a reasonable time as provided in ORS 419B.476 (Conduct of hearing) (5)(c);

(B) Another permanent plan is better suited to meet the health and safety needs of the child or ward, including the need to preserve the child’s or ward’s sibling attachments and relationships; or

(C) The court or local citizen review board in a prior hearing or review determined that while the case plan was to reunify the family the department did not make reasonable efforts or, if the Indian Child Welfare Act applies, active efforts to make it possible for the child or ward to safely return home; or

(c) The department has not provided to the family of the child or ward, consistent with the time period in the case plan, such services as the department deems necessary for the child or ward to safely return home, if reasonable efforts to make it possible for the child or ward to safely return home are required to be made with respect to the child or ward.

(3) No petition to terminate the parental rights of a child or ward’s parents pursuant to subsection (1) of this section or pursuant to ORS 419B.500 (Termination of parental rights generally), 419B.502 (Termination upon finding of extreme conduct), 419B.504 (Termination upon finding of unfitness), 419B.506 (Termination upon finding of neglect) or 419B.508 (Termination upon finding of abandonment) may be filed until the court has determined that the permanency plan for the child or ward should be adoption after a permanency hearing pursuant to ORS 419B.476 (Conduct of hearing). [1999 c.859 §21; 2001 c.686 §17; 2003 c.396 §82; 2003 c.544 §2; 2007 c.234 §1; 2007 c.806 §12]

Notes of Decisions

Under Former Similar Statutes

Due process does not require the appoint­ment of “independent counsel” to represent the child in every adop­tion or termina­tion of parental rights pro­ceed­ing. F. v. C., 24 Or App 601, 547 P2d 175 (1976)

When sec­ond termina­tion of parental rights pro­ceed­ing was not itself barred, proof was not limited by res judicata or collateral estoppel principles to facts or evidence which was not considered in or which came in to being after first pro­ceed­ing. State ex rel Juvenile Dept. v. Newman, 49 Or App 221, 619 P2d 901 (1980), Sup Ct review denied

Notes of Decisions

Permanency plan under which adop­tion is likely outcome is necessary to terminate parental rights. State v. L.C., 234 Or App 347, 228 P3d 594 (2010)

Child’s or ward’s place­ment with relative that is intended to be permanent is place­ment with relative other than adop­tion. Depart­ment of Human Services v. H.R., 241 Or App 370, 250 P3d 427 (2011)

Where Depart­ment of Human Services intends to terminate parental rights, juvenile court must first carefully evaluate permanency plan of adop­tion for permanency judg­ment before depart­ment files termina­tion peti­tion. Juvenile court may change or continue existing plan of adop­tion after permanency hearing as necessary to achieve positive outcome for child. Depart­ment of Human Services v. M.H., 266 Or App 361, 337 P3d 976 (2014)

When read together with ORS 419B.476 (Conduct of hearing), juvenile court must first determine that no compelling reasons exist to not terminate parental rights before changing child’s permanency plan from reunifica­tion to adop­tion. Dept. of Human Services v. S. J. M., 283 Or App 367, 388 P3d 417 (2017), Sup Ct review allowed

Chapter 419B

Notes of Decisions

Due process rights of parents are al­ways implicated in construc­tion and applica­tion of pro­vi­sions of this chapter. Depart­ment of Human Services v. J.R.F., 351 Or 570, 273 P3d 87 (2012)

1 Legislative Counsel Committee, CHAPTER 419B—Juvenile Code: Dependency, https://­www.­oregonlegislature.­gov/­bills_laws/­ors/­ors419B.­html (2017) (last ac­cessed Mar. 30, 2018).
 
2 Legislative Counsel Committee, Annotations to the Oregon Revised Stat­utes, Cumulative Supplement - 2017, Chapter 419B, https://­www.­oregonlegislature.­gov/­bills_laws/­ors/­ano419B.­html (2017) (last ac­cessed Mar. 30, 2018).
 
3 OregonLaws.org assembles these lists by analyzing references between Sections. Each listed item refers back to the current Section in its own text. The result reveals relationships in the code that may not have otherwise been apparent.