IN RE: Guardianship

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Supreme Court, Appellate Division, First Department, New York.

IN RE: Guardianship, etc., ALEXIS S.D., A Dependent Child Under the Age of Eighteen Years, etc., Wanda C., Respondent-Appellant, Episcopal Social Services, et al., Petitioners-Respondents.

Decided: May 13, 2004

NARDELLI, J.P., ANDRIAS, ELLERIN, LERNER, MARLOW, JJ. Law Offices of Randall S. Carmel, Hastings-on-Hudson (Randall S. Carmel of counsel), for appellant. Magovern & Sclafani, New York (David A. LoRe of counsel), for respondents. Monica Drinane, The Legal Aid Society, New York (Patricia S. Colella of counsel), law guardian.

Order of disposition, Family Court, New York County (Sara P. Schechter, J.), entered on or about August 28, 2002, after a fact-finding determination of permanent neglect, terminating respondent's parental rights to the subject child and committing the child's guardianship and custody to petitioner agency and the Commissioner of Social Services for the purpose of adoption, unanimously affirmed, without costs.

 The finding of permanent neglect is supported by clear and convincing evidence that respondent failed to complete a drug treatment program during the statutorily relevant time period (see Matter of Dade Wynn F., 291 A.D.2d 218, 737 N.Y.S.2d 346, lv. denied 98 N.Y.2d 604, 746 N.Y.S.2d 278, 773 N.E.2d 1016), and also failed to separate from and indeed married her boyfriend, who had failed to complete domestic violence and drug rehabilitation programs as required by the dispositional order entered in the neglect proceeding and to which he had been referred by the agency (see Matter of Kimberly Rosemarie S., 211 A.D.2d 594, 621 N.Y.S.2d 614, lv. denied 85 N.Y.2d 809, 628 N.Y.S.2d 52, 651 N.E.2d 920).   The finding that termination of parental rights is in the child's best interests is supported by a preponderance of the evidence showing, inter alia, that the child is thriving in the home of her foster parents, and the absence of credible evidence that respondent has ended the objectionable relationship (cf.  Matter of Mia Tracy-Nellie G., 299 A.D.2d 186, 750 N.Y.S.2d 15).   Under the circumstances, evidence that petitioner completed a drug rehabilitation program after the filing of the petition does not warrant a suspended judgment (see Matter of Rutherford Roderick T., 4 A.D.3d 213, 772 N.Y.S.2d 49).   Post-adoption visitation is not a dispositional option (Matter of April S., 307 A.D.2d 204, 762 N.Y.S.2d 380, lv. denied 1 N.Y.3d 504, 775 N.Y.S.2d 781, 807 N.E.2d 894).