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In re Adoption of B.F.S., 2020 UT App 149 (Nov. 5, 2020)

Nov 5, 2020

This appeal arose from the district court’s denial of a Utah-based adoption agency’s uncontested petition for determination of rights and interests, and a temporary custody order, to facilitate the
adoption of a child. The district court held that venue in Utah was inappropriate and that the proceeding was not in the best of interest of the child, because the child’s birth mother and potential adoptive parents lived in other states. On appeal, the court held that the district court erred in dismissing the petition for lack of venue, because the petition is governed by the general catch-all venue provision in Utah Code § 78B-3-307(1) and (3), which provide that the case may be tried “in any county designated by the plaintiff in the complaint.” The court further held that the district court’s finding that it was in the best interests of the child to have the petition adjudicated in another state was clearly erroneous.