International custody heading back to court - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Posted by: Ursula Madden 5/19/04 6:28PM

International custody heading back to court

One week after a judge's ruling Jack and Casey He began the appeals process in an attempt to regain custody of their child.

What it means: more waiting.

This courtroom battle has been going on for the past four years, and the appeal comes as no surprise. In fact, the couple who wants to adopt Anna Mae He--Jerry and Louise Baker--said they would have been surprised if the Hes had not filed an appeal.

"I just want my child back and we go back to China," said Casey He.

A court ruling to terminate the parental rights of Jack and Casey He has put the couple's plans of returning to China on hold.

They will remain in the United States while appealing to a higher court.

"If the state supreme court makes its decision based on facts, law, and in legal terms, then Judge Childers decision should be reversed," said Jack He.

But Aaron Ayers, an attorney specializing in family and custody law, says getting reversal won't be easy.

"In cases like this you see most of the finding being factual type finding and applying those findings to the standard of the best interest of the child those decisions are entitled to great weight and difficult to reverse those decisions," said custody attorney Aaron Ayers.

Something the He's say they are prepared for.

"We are hoping for the best and prepared for the worst, basically we have no choice," said Jack He.

"The court of appeal is going to have to review all the facts of the decision, if he made his decision in accordance with the law....and if the He's do not prevail they do have the recourse of going to the supreme court," said Ayers.

And the appeal could reach the U.S. Supreme court. Attorney David Siegel believes Jack and Casey He's constitutional rights were violated, because the couple was not notified by the courts that their parental rights could be terminated if they failed to pay supports for four months.

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