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150142 - In re ARS, Minor

  In re ARS, Minor
Phillip Schnebelt and Pamela Schnebelt,
Liisa R. Speaker
(Appeal from Ct of Appeals)
(Shiawassee – Dignan, T.)
Derek Musall,
Vivek Sankaran
Kayleigh Marie Schneblt,


Kayleigh Schnebelt and Derek Musall were involved in an on-again, off-again relationship, resulting in the birth of a child that Kayleigh’s parents, Pamila and Phillip Schnebelt, adopted with the consent of both Kayleigh and Derek.

Kayleigh learned she was pregnant a second time and started proceedings for her parents to adopt the child in this case. Musall filed a paternity action after learning of the pending adoption proceeding. The trial court adjourned the adoption proceeding and then dismissed it after declaring Musall the legal father. Schnebelts appealed.
In an unpublished per curiam opinion, the Court of Appeals up held the trial court ruling. Observing that this case involves the interplay of the Adoption Code, MCL 710.21 et seq., and the Paternity Act, MCL 722.711 et seq., the panel held that the trial court had “appropriately adjourned the adoption proceedings in favor of the paternity action, and properly dismissed the adoption proceeding once it held respondent [Musall] to be the legal father.”
.  In an order dated November 26, 2014, the Supreme Court scheduled argument on whether to grant the application or take other action. The parties were ordered to address: (1) whether the respondent father demonstrated adequate “good cause” under Section 25 of the Adoption Code, MCL 710.25(2), for the adjournment of the adoption proceeding; (2) whether the respondent adequately demonstrated that he had “provided substantial and regular support or care in accordance with [his] ability to provide such support or care for the mother during pregnancy or for either mother or child after the child’s birth during the 90 days before notice of the hearing was served upon him,” MCL 710.39(2); and (3) whether the trial court gave adequate consideration to the legislative mandate that all adoption proceedings “be considered to have the highest priority . . . .” MCL 710.25(1).