Holley Factors

In deciding whether termination of the parent-child relationship is in the child’s best interest, Texas courts look to a nonexhaustive list of factors laid out in the case of Holley v. Adams, 544 SW2d 367 (Tex. 1976).

In determining whether termination is in the child’s best interest, we may consider several factors, including, but not limited to, (1) the child’s desires, (2) the current and future physical and emotional needs of the child, (3) the current and future physical danger to the child, (4) the parental abilities of the person seeking custody, (5) whether programs are available to assist the person seeking custody in promoting the best interests of the child, (6) plans for the child by the person seeking custody, (7) the stability of the home, (8) acts or omissions of the parent that may indicate that the parent-child relationship is not proper, and (9) any excuse for acts or omissions of the parent. Holley v. Adams, 544 S.W.2d 367, 371-72 (Tex.1976)In re L.M., 104 S.W.3d 642, 647 (Tex.App.-Houston [1st Dist.] 2003, no pet.). The burden is on DFPS to rebut the presumption that the best interest of the child is served by keeping custody in the natural parents. In re K.C.M., 4 S.W.3d 392, 395 (Tex.App.-Houston [1st Dist.] 1999, pet. denied). The Holley factors are not exhaustive, nor must all of the factors be proved as a condition precedent to terminate parental rights. See In re C.H., 89 S.W.3d at 27. “The absence of evidence about some of these considerations would not preclude a fact finder from reasonably forming a strong conviction or belief that termination is in the child’s best interest, particularly if the evidence were undisputed that the parental relationship endangered the safety of the child.” Id.

Cervantes-Peterson v. Tex. Dep’t of Family & Protective Servs., 221 S.W.3d 244, 253-54 (Tex. App.-Houston [1st Dist.] 2006, no pet.) (en banc).

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