Immigration officials took away a child from an undocumented immigrant mother who was arrested for being in the country illegally. After she was released from a detention facility, the judge terminated her parental rights based on abandonment and had put the child up for adoption. The mother has been fighting to get her son back ever since.
A Missouri family was looking to adopt a child at about the time when Child Protective Services were given Encarnacion Romero’s young son. The proceedings went through and the family adopted the baby and have been raising him as their own for six years now. This entire time Romero and her attorney, Bill Fleischaker, have appealed the court’s decisions giving custody of the child to the family.
The judge at the district level ruled that it would not be in the child’s best interest to remove him from the only family he has ever known. Romero believes the child should best remain with his biological family.
Romero’s attorneys filed a request Monday for the Missouri Supreme Court to hear the case, but the court refused to hear the challenge to a state appeals court ruling to terminate her parental rights. Fleischaker is making a point that a mother’s immigration status should not determine parental rights and an adoption.
On the other hand, the adoptive family’s lawyer replied arguing that the parents have been caring for the boy for six years with no problems and uprooting the boy from his current family, friends and school would make him worse off. This case has been ongoing for years with no end in sight if the Supreme Court will not make a decision. The case is important because it would set a precedent on who has priority in parental rights cases specifically dealing with immigration status.
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