In re Interest of Shayla H., November 14, 2014, (Nebraska)

Synopsis provided by Westlaw: The Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) initiated dependency proceedings concerning father’s three Native American children. The Juvenile Court, Lancaster County, Linda S. Porter, J., adjudicated children as dependent, and subsequently entered dispositional order the DHHS had made reasonable efforts at reunification, but that it was in best interests of children that father have only physical custody of children and that DHHS retain legal custody. Father appealed. The Court of Appeals, 22 Neb.App. 1, 846 N.W.2d 668, affirmed in part, reversed in part, and remanded. DHHS petitioned for review.

Holding provided by Westlaw: The Supreme Court, Stephan, J., held that in dependency proceedings involving Native American children, DHHS had to make active efforts at reunification, not merely reasonable efforts, pursuant to Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA) and Nebraska Indian Child Welfare Act (NICWA). Affirmed.

Read the full decision at the National Indian Law Library website.