California Supreme Court Watch

Dec 29, 2021
Guardianship of Saul H. (Guardianship of S.H.R.), S271265.

#21-572 Guardianship of Saul H., S271265. (B308440; 68 Cal.App.5th 563, mod. 69 Cal.App.5th 85a; Los Angeles County Superior Court; 19AVPB00310.) Petition for review after the Court of Appeal affirmed orders in a guardianship proceeding. This case presents issues relating to petitions for Special Immigrant Findings under Code of Civil Procedure section 155.

Review granted: 12/29/2021

GMSR attorneys appointed by California Supreme Court, pro bono, to represent Court of Appeal opinion: 1/14/2022 (click HERE to read more).

Cause argued and submitted: 6/07/2022 (argument on behalf of Court of Appeal presented by Greines, Martin, Stein & Richland’s Stefan Caris Love).

Opinion filed: Judgment reversed: 8/15/2022

See the Court of Appeal Opinion.

See the Answering Brief on the Merits filed by Greines, Martin, Stein & Richland LLP as pro bono counsel appointed to argue positions adopted in the Court of Appeal opinion.

See the Consolidated Answer to Amicus Curiae Briefs Filed In Support Of Petitioner filed by Greines, Martin, Stein & Richland LLP as pro bono counsel appointed to argue positions adopted in the Court of Appeal opinion.

See the Oral Argument.

See the California Supreme Court Opinion.  (Guardianship of Saul H. (2022) 13 Cal.5th 827)

“We conclude the probate court applied an incorrect legal framework in ruling on Saul’s petition. Applying the correct framework, we hold that it is not viable to reunify Saul with his parents because he would face a ‘substantial risk’ of ‘serious physical harm’ as a result of his parents’ failure or inability to adequately protect him. (Welf. & Inst. Code, § 300, subd. (b)(1).) This is a ‘similar basis pursuant to California law’ for the nonviability of reunification finding. (§ 155, subd. (b)(1)(B).) We further hold that returning Saul to live in El Salvador would be detrimental to his health, safety, and welfare, and therefore contrary to his best interest under California law. (Fam. Code, §§ 3020, subd. (a), § 3011, subd. (a)(1).)”

“We reverse the Court of Appeal’s judgment and direct that this case be remanded to the probate court with directions to reinstate Rivas’s guardianship and expeditiously issue an order granting Saul’s petition for SIJ predicate findings in accordance with the guidance set out in this opinion, allowing enough time to ensure Saul can file an application with United States Citizenship and Immigration Services for special immigrant juvenile status before his twenty-first birthday. To help ensure sufficient time on remand, our decision will become final and remittitur issue seven days from the date we file this opinion. (Cal. Rules of Court, rules 8.532(b)(1)(A), 8.540(b)(1).)”  (Fns. omitted.)

“Since no party or amicus curiae had opposed the issuance of SIJ predicate findings, we invited Jeffery E. Raskin and Stefan Love of Greines, Martin, Stein and Richland LLP to brief and argue this case on a pro bono basis in support of the Court of Appeal’s holdings. We thank them for their service.”

Justice Groban authored the opinion of the Court, in which Justices Corrigan, Liu, Kruger, Jenkins, and Guerrero concurred.

Chief Justice Cantil-Sakauye filed a concurring opinion.