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Rule 60(a) – Timeliness of Appeal

P.H. v. Butler County Dept. of Human Resources, [Ms. 2170380, 2170381, and 2170382, May 18, 2018] So. 3d (Ala. Civ. App. 2018). This unanimous decision by Presiding Judge Thompson dismisses the mother’s appeal from judgments of the Butler Juvenile Court terminating her parental rights. The Juvenile Court entered judgments terminating parental rights on November 17, 2017. Ms. *2. On November 28, 2017, the court amended the judgments but made no substantive changes. Ibid.

The court concluded that the November 28, 2017 amended judgments merely corrected a clerical error. The court held “‘[t]he effect of Rule 60(a) amendment is a correction of the original judgment to reflect the original intention of the trial court. There was no change in the actual judgment. The amendment relates back to the original judgment and becomes a part of it.’” Ms. *3, quoting Bergen-Patterson, Inc. v. Naylor, 701 So. 2d 826, 829 (Ala. Civ. App. 1997). The mother’s appeal was untimely because “‘[a] Rule 60(a) correction has no bearing on the timeliness of the appeal from the original uncorrected judgment.’” Ms. *3-4, quoting J.S. v. S.W., 702 So. 2d 169,171 (Ala. Civ. App. 1997).

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