The parties divorced. Mother had been granted custody of the child. Mother and the child had an Order of Protection against father. The Judge found that restricted visitation between father and child was “necessary for the physical, emotional and mental well being of the child in order to protect her from danger.”
Mother and the child were in a rollover car accident. Reportedly after mother was driving erratically at high speed. The child was not injured. Mother was hospitalized for three weeks for mental health concerns. DCFS got involved because of mother’s living conditions.
The Order of Protection ran out. Father still had not addressed the dangers posed by his history of domestic violence. He was allowed to begin a process of reunification with the child.
DCFS made requests of father. DCFS asked to include his lady friend and her children in the assessment. DCFS asked to visit their home to ensure that it was safe. Father and his lady friend refused. They said that they were not legally required to submit to this. They said that they had done nothing wrong.
The child did not want to live with her father. She would prefer to live with her mother. Then visit with her father on weekends. If she could not live with her mother, she would rather stay with her foster mother.
Mother showed to the Appellate Court that she was able to care for the child now. Mother had diligently complied with all aspects of her service plan. She had corrected all of the conditions that caused the child to be removed from her care. Mother sought out treatment and medication. She had been diligent about continuing with both. She had made good progress.
Father’s appeal was denied. He did not prove that the finding of unfitness against him was wrong.
In re K.E.S., 2018 IL App (2d) 170907
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