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Unpublished Decision from Alaska Declining to Apply 2015 ICWA Guidelines Provision on Expert Witnesses

May 7, 2017

Turtle Talk

Here.

Even before the holding, the Court brushes aside some pretty disturbing facts, including:

OCS noted that Casey might be affiliated with the Asa’carsamiut Tribe and that the children were believed to be Indian children affiliated with the Tribe. . . . In September the Tribe attempted to intervene. Because the Tribe’s documents were ambiguous about Casey’s tribal membership and the Tribe did not respond to the trial court’s request for clarification, in November the trial court denied the intervention motion without prejudice. At about the same time the trial court granted OCS’s motion to remove the children from Kent’s home.

In August 2013 OCS petitioned to terminate Kent’s and Casey’s parental rights, stating that the children were “not believed to be Indian children” and setting out the grounds for termination.  In its order terminating Kent’s parental rights, the trial court first stated that it had made findings at…

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