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Circuit court sufficiently examined facts in deciding to terminate parental rights

State v. J.D.C., Jr., 2022AP1028, District 1, 9/27/22 (one-judge decision; ineligible for publication); case activity

The court of appeals rejects J.D.C.’s claim that the circuit court erroneously exercised its discretion in deciding that termination of J.D.C.’s parental rights was in the best interest of his parental rights to C.M.M.

J.D.C. concedes the court considered all the relevant factors under § 48.426(3), but asserts the court didn’t adequately examining all of the relevant evidence. The court of appeals disagrees, finding that the court did in fact consider the evidence J.D.C. cites (¶¶19-23) and that J.D.C.’s argument is “essentially … that the trial court should have weight the evidence differently, such that it would be viewed more favorably toward him. This however, is not the standard; rather, the trial court is to use its discretion to determine the best interests of the child, based on its consideration of all the evidence as it relates to the statutory factors. See [State v.] Margaret H., [2000 WI 42,] 234 Wis. 2d 606, ¶¶27, 23[, 610 N.W.2d 475]. The trial court properly did so here.” (¶24).

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