National Center for Youth Law

STRATEGIES

Timmy S. v. Stumbo

This case was filed on behalf of a seven-year-old child with multiple disabilities and his biological mother and foster parents, alleging the state failed to provide the child with appropriate services, including an adequate foster home. The biological mother found an appropriate foster home, but the state refused placement. The parties sought an administrative hearing. The state refused to provide a hearing and retaliated by closing the foster home.

Overview

FILE NO., COURT AND DATE FILED

80-24 (E.D. Ky., Feb. 19, 1980)

CITATIONS

537 F. Supp. 39 (E.D. Ky. 1981); 916 F.2d 312 (6th Cir. 1990); 12 F.3d 214 (6th Cir. 1993)

ATTORNEYS FOR PLAINTIFFS

Appalachian Research & Defense
Fund of Kentucky, Inc.
120 N. Front Avenue
Prestonburg, KY 41653
(606) 886-3876
Fax: (606) 886-0079

HISTORY AND STATUS

As the case progressed, Kentucky changed its system of administrative hearings dramatically. By 1989, the only remaining dispute concerned the right of foster parents to fair hearings. The state argued that foster parents had no such rights.

The district court ruled that foster parents did have a right to hearings under federal statute. Kentucky appealed. In 1990, the United States Court of Appeals affirmed this ruling. In 1992, defendants moved to vacate the order, arguing that the Supreme Court’s decision inĀ Suter v. Artist M. removed the legal basis for the court’s order. The district court denied the motion as untimely. On November 29, 1993, the Sixth Circuit affirmed the district court’s denial. This case was dismissed and attorneys’ fees awarded on May 2, 1994.