The state failed to make a reasonable effort to reunite a woman with the son who was taken away from her after he was born with methamphetamine in his system, the Montana Supreme Court ruled.
The justices unanimously overturned the July 2018 termination of the mother’s parental rights and ordered the Division of Child and Family Services to work to reunite the woman with her son, who has lived with foster parents in Billings since his birth in October 2016.
“We understand (the) child has been in the foster placement for over two years and is apparently thriving and there is no guarantee mother’s substance abuse disorder will remain in remission,” Justice Ingrid Gustafson wrote in Tuesday’s opinion. “There are times, however, when the court must recognize the parent has not received what the law guarantees before her rights may be terminated. This is such a case.”