IN RE DANIEL N., SC 19731

Judicial District of New Haven

 

†††††† Termination of Parental Rights; Whether Appellate Court Properly Reversed Termination Judgment Because Parent was not Canvassed Prior to Start of Trial.† The respondent father appealed from a trial court judgment terminating his parental rights with respect to his minor son.† He claimed that he was entitled to a new termination of parental rights trial because he had not been canvassed pursuant to In re Yasiel R., 317 Conn. 773 (2015), a decision released after the conclusion of his trial.† In In re Yasiel R., the Supreme Court adopted a new rule requiring that a trial court canvass respondent parents prior to the start of the trial in a termination proceeding to ensure that they understand the trial process, their rights and the potential consequences of their actions.† The Appellate Court (163 Conn. App. 322) reversed the judgment terminating the fatherís rights, concluding that the canvass rule adopted in In re Yasiel R. applied retroactively and that, because the trial court failed to canvass him prior to the start of the trial in accordance with that rule, he was entitled to a new termination of parental rights trial.† The Appellate Court found that the Supreme Court intended that the new rule announced in In re Yasiel R. apply retroactively and therefore that it was bound to reverse the judgment and order a new trial.† The Supreme Court granted the Department of Children and Families certification to appeal, and it will decide whether the Appellate Court properly reversed the trial courtís judgment on concluding that In re Yasiel R. applied retroactively and controlled the result in this case.†