FIU Law Family & Children’s Law Clinic Successful in 3rd District Court of Appeal Case

MIAMI (February 2, 2012) – Under the supervision of Professor Laverne Pinkney, staff attorney Ricardo Rodriguez ‘10 of the Family and Children Law Clinic  successfully argued a case before the Third District Court of Appeal on behalf of a 12 year old child whose express wishes were to be with her mother.

The clinic argued that the Court must consider the express wishes of a child who is old enough and capable of expressing them. In a decision handed down on February 1, DM and BA vs. DCF, the Court reversed a termination of parental rights holding against the mother (BA) and affirmed as to the father (DM).  The court found no clear and convincing evidence that the rights of BA, a survivor of domestic violence, should be terminated because she was improving with treatment, having positive interactions with her children, and because expert testimony showed that it takes about a year for therapy for domestic violence victims to work.

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