Strickland v. StricklandAnnotate this Case
The issue this case presented for the Supreme Court's review arose from a custody dispute between a biological mother and her parents over three minor children. In 2006, grandparents Roy and Betty Strickland obtained emergency custody of their daughter Lea Strickland's three minor children. In October 2008, the juvenile court found all three children were deprived and, with mother’s consent, extended the grandparents’ temporary custody of the children through July 2010, granting mother supervised visitation. In mid-2010, grandparents filed a petition for permanent custody. The case was transferred to Cobb County Superior Court after the parties agreed venue was appropriate there. Following a five day bench trial, the superior court entered an order granting grandparents’ petition. Mother appealed, and finding that grandparents had failed to meet the high burden of proof sufficient to deprive mother of her custodial rights to the children, the Court of Appeals reversed the trial court. Grandparents filed a petition for writ of certiorari in which they claimed the Court of Appeals erred in failing to give appropriate deference to the trial court’s factual findings and thus erred in reversing the trial court’s award of permanent custody to them. Because the Supreme Court found the Court of Appeals failed to properly apply the correct standard of review, it reversed the decision in this case and remanded for further proceedings.