Termination of parental rights affirmed – Ky Court of Appeals published opinion


K.M.E. v. Commonwealth of Kentucky Cabinet for Health and Family Services

Trial Court granted Cabinet’s petition to involuntarily terminate abusive Father’s parental rights pursuant to KRS625.090 finding that Father abandoned Children, could not provide essential parental care and protection, and failed to provide essentials necessary for the Children’s well-being. Trial Court based its decision on the following: court ordered abusive parenting classes required Father to sign an accountability statement. Father refused to admit to abusing Child and thus could not complete court ordered abusive parenting classes. The Cabinet did not offer Father another alternative program. Additionally, Father voluntarily relocated to Michigan, did not remain consistently employed, and failed to obtain adequate housing for Children.    


Father appealed arguing the Cabinet failed to provide statutory grounds justifying the termination of his parental rights and that the Cabinet failed to make reasonable efforts to reunite the family.

Court of Appeals found the Trial Court’s findings were based on substantial clear and convincing evidence and held there was no error in the Trial Court’s decision. Additionally, the Court of Appeals held that the Cabinet was not obligated to offer Father an alternative to abusive parenting classes because Father refused to complete the programs requirements and, thus, the Cabinet made reasonable efforts to reunite the family.

Digested by Emily T. Cecconi