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Seiler v. State

April 6, 2010

RACHEL SEILER, APPELLANT
v.
STATE OF NORTH DAKOTA DEPARTMENT OF HUMAN SERVICES, APPELLEE



Appeal from the District Court of Burleigh County, South Central Judicial District, the Honorable Thomas J. Schneider, Judge.

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Crothers, Justice.

AFFIRMED.

[¶1] Rachel Seiler appeals the district court judgment affirming the North Dakota Department of Human Services' decision that services are required to remedy the physical neglect of Seiler's child. We affirm.

I.

[¶2] Seiler was reported for suspected child neglect in November 2007. Burleigh County Social Services investigated the report, conducting interviews with Seiler, her reportedly neglected child and the reporting individual. The investigation results were presented to the Burleigh County Child Protection Team, which determined that Seiler had physically neglected her child and that services were required to address the child's health and hygiene.

[¶3] Seiler appealed the Child Protection Team's decision, and an administrative hearing was held on October 9, 2008. The child's medical records were introduced, and testimony was heard from the child's teacher and a social worker. The hearing officer concluded Seiler's child was neglected and recommended affirmance of the Child Protection Team's decision. The Department's executive director adopted the hearing officer's recommended findings of fact and conclusions of law, affirming the Child Protection Team's decision that services are required to remedy the physical neglect of Seiler's child. Seiler appealed to the district court, which also affirmed the Child Protection Team's decision. Seiler timely filed this appeal.

II.

[¶4] Seiler alleges the administrative proceedings violated a number of her constitutional rights. Absent from Seiler's appeal, however, is an argument for reversal of the Child Protection Team's decision requiring services. While Seiler does not address the underlying "services required" decision on this appeal, it was squarely addressed in her appeal to the district court, where she stated in her brief: "The Court will note that the issue of whether the decision requiring services has not been appealed."

[¶5] The Administrative Agencies Practice Act requires this Court to affirm an order from an administrative agency unless it is determined:

"1. The order is not in accordance with the law.

2. The order is in violation of the constitutional rights of the appellant.

3. The provisions of this chapter have not been complied with in the proceedings before the agency.

4. The rules or procedure of the agency have not afforded the appellant a fair hearing.

5. The findings of fact made by the agency are not supported by a ...


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