A.A. v. Department of Children and Families, 147 So.3d 621 (Fla. 3rd DCA 2014)

Mother filed a petition for writ of certiorari for review of the trial court’s denial of her motion to modify a permanency order and reunification with her children. The Third DCA granted Mother’s petition.

The children had been placed in a permanent guardianship with their stepfather and Mother had maintained supervised visitation. Mother sought to modify the order and reunify with her children. The trial court reopened the case and ordered a psychological evaluation of the Mother but ultimately denied Mother’s petition without an evidentiary hearing. Mother requested a rehearing, which was denied.

The Third DCA agreed with Mother’s argument that the trial court’s failure to hold an evidentiary hearing denied her due process right to present evidence. Additionally, the trial court’s order failed to include the required written findings of fact delineated in Fla. Statute § 39.621(10).

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