In South Carolina you need to have grounds for terminating parental rights and it must be in the best interest of the child. Since our teen is 17 years old they would not have terminated her parents rights unless she wanted to be adopted and there was an adoptive home designated. Our teen has consistently voiced that she wanted adopted. We have consistently agreed to adopt her. Without either of those along with the grounds for termination, we would not have gotten TPR today.
The following are the 9 different grounds that SC has for TPR.
Grounds for Termination of Parental Rights
The statute provides nine grounds upon which parental rights may be terminated.
While a complaint may address several grounds, only one has to be proven
along with the termination of parental rights being in the best interests of the
child, before a parent's rights can be terminated.
Severity or Pattern of Abuse or Neglect
"The child or another child in the home has been harmed as defined in Section
20-7-490, and because of the severity or repetition of the abuse or neglect, it is
not reasonably likely that the home can be made safe within twelve months. In
determining the likelihood that the home can be made safe, the parent's previous
abuse or neglect of the child or another child in the home may be considered."
S.C. Code Ann. §20-7-1572(l) (Supp. 2002).
Failure to Remedy Conditions
"The child has been removed from the parent pursuant to Section 20-7-736, has
been out of the home for a period of six months, and the parent has not remedied
the conditions which caused the removal." S.C. Code Ann. §20-7-1572(2) (Supp.
Failure to Visit
and during that time the parent has willfully failed to visit the child. The court may
attach little or no weight to incidental visitations, but it must be shown that the
parent was not prevented from visiting by the party having custody or by court
order. The distance of the child's placement from the parent's home must be
taken into consideration when determining the ability to visit." S.C. Code Ann. §
20-7-1572(3) (Supp. 2002).
Failure to Support
"The child has lived outside the home of either parent for a period of six months,
and during that time the parent has willfully failed to support the child. Failure to
support means that the parent has willfully failed to make a material contribution
to the child's care. A material contribution consists of either financial contribution
according to the parent's means or contributions of food, clothing, shelter, or
other necessities for the care of the child according to the parent's means. The
court may consider all relevant circumstances in determining whether or not the
parent has willfully failed to support the child, including requests for support by
the custodian and the ability of the parent to provide support." S.C. Code Ann.
§20-7-1572(4) (Supp. 2002).
"The presumptive legal father is not the biological father of the child, and the
welfare of the child can best be served by termination of the parental rights of the
presumptive father." S.C. Code Ann. §20-7-1572(5) (Supp. 2002).
"The parent has a diagnosable condition unlikely to change within a reasonable
time including, but not limited to, alcohol or drug addiction, mental deficiency,
mental illness, or extreme physical incapacity, and the condition makes the
parent unlikely to provide minimally acceptable care of the child. It is presumed
that the parent's condition is unlikely to change within a reasonable time upon
proof that the parent has been required by the department or the family court to
participate in a treatment program for alcohol or drug addiction, and the parent
has failed two or more times to complete the program successfully or has refused
at two or more separate meetings with the department to participate in a
treatment program." S.C. Code Ann. § 20-7-1572(6) (Supp. 2002).
"The child has been abandoned as defined in Section 20-7-490(21)." S.C. Code
Ann. § 20-7-1572(7) (Supp. 2002).
Length of Foster Care
"The child has been in foster care under the responsibility of the State for fifteen
of the most recent twenty-two months." S.C. Code Ann. §20-7-1572(8) (Supp.
Criminal Convictions for Abuse
"The physical abuse of a child of the parent resulted in the death or admission to
the hospital for in-patient care of that child and the abuse is the act for which the
parent has been convicted of or pled guilty or nolo contendere to committing,
aiding, abetting, conspiring to commit, or soliciting an offense against the person
as provided for in Title 16, Chapter 3, criminal domestic violence as defined in
Section 16-25-20 criminal domestic violence of a high and aggravated nature as
defined in Section 16-25-65, or the common law offense of assault and battery of
a high and aggravated nature." S.C. Code Ann. §20-7-1572(9)(Supp. 2002).