Pro Se ICWA Cert Petition Filed with Supreme Court

The case is captioned James L. v. Devin H.

Petition here.

Docket here.

We will post the entire petition once we get it.

Questions presented:

The Indian Child Welfare Act of 1978 (ICWA), 25 U.S.C. §§ 1901-63 applies, with two express exceptions, “In any involuntary proceeding in a State court, where the court knows or has reason to know that an Indian child is involved”. Despite that fact, many state courts of last resort, and countless state appellate courts in this country have been called upon, year after year, throughout the 35 year history of the Act, to decide a single question of Federal law. That question has involved hundreds of custody disputes to date and a significant number of Indian children each and every year. It is one of the most important questions which this Honorable Court will ever decide regarding the ICWA, and one which all Indian children, families, and tribes have needed a conclusive answer from this Court on for the past 35 years:

(1) Does the Indian Child Welfare Act apply to an involuntary child custody proceeding involving an Indian child, between biological parents and a third party non-parent?

As a separate issue, Petitioner also presents the following question:

(2) Does awarding conservatorship of a child to a third-party non-parent, over the objections of a biological parent and without a finding of parental unfitness, unconstitutionally infringe upon “the interest of parents in the care, custody and control of their children”?

This entry was posted in Author: Matthew L.M. Fletcher, ICWA, Research, Supreme Court and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Pro Se ICWA Cert Petition Filed with Supreme Court

  1. One would think the answer to the second question would be automatic. Such awarding of conservatorship is unconstitutional.

  2. Pingback: The October 2013 Term Long Conference: Indian Law Edition | Turtle Talk

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