Sunday, March 15, 2015
NEW JERSEY DIVISION OF YOUTH AND FAMILY SERVICES VS. P.C. A-1045-14T4(NEWLY PUBLISHED OPINION FOR MARCH 4, 2015)
NEW JERSEY DIVISION OF YOUTH AND FAMILY SERVICES VS. P.C.
A-1045-14T4(NEWLY PUBLISHED OPINION FOR MARCH 4, 2015)
Defendant P.C. appeals from a Family Part order determining she neglected the emotional needs of her teenaged daughter O.B. (Olivia). At the commencement of a fact-finding hearing on the complaint filed by the Division of Youth and Family Services
(the Division) concerning conduct by B.C., defendant's former husband, the trial judge suggested sua sponte the facts "could rise" to support a finding of neglect against defendant, even though the Division's complaint had not alleged substantive allegations that she had abused or neglected Olivia. Following an adjournment, although the Division's complaint was not amended, the same judge presided over the reconstituted fact-finding hearing reviewing the conduct of both defendant and B.C. We conclude this was error and reverse.03/05/15