Learning More About Grandparental Custody


There are fewer greater loves than that of a grandparent for their grandchild, but in some instances that relationship may be threatened. If you are being denied time with your grandchild or you have reason to believe that their health and well-being are being jeopardized by the actions of the child's parents, the time may come to take legal action. Read on for some more information about your rights to seek custody of your grandchild.

What might prompt this action?

It's not uncommon for things to disrupt a family and most families deal with the periodic problems that crop up, learn from their mistakes and move on. The time may come, however, when the atmosphere in your grandchild's family home becomes so chaotic and damaging that you have to step in and take action. You should know that the rights for grandparents to take custody of their grandchild are more recognized than ever before, but you must have good reason to seek custody. Not only must there be good reason, you must be able to prove any allegations with police reports, arrest reports, medical exams, home visit results and more. Some unfortunately common issues that could have you seeking custody include:

  • Physical or emotional abuse by the parent
  • The presence of drug or alcohol abuse by the parent
  • Unsafe or unclean living conditions in the home
  • One or more of the parents is incapacitated, either mentally or physically
  • One or more of the parents are incarcerated

Taking into consideration the best interest of the child

The courts place a very high priority on the best interest of the child, and that means that the needs or desires of the parent or the grandparents come in second to that of the child. The courts must recognize that the child is better off with either the parents or the grandparents or someone else entirely before a change can be made.

Fitness for custody

The judge may not automatically decide that the grandparent is the best custodian for the child; fitness by the grandparent must be demonstrated. Another relative or even a foster home could be ordered for the child if the grandparent is considered unfit. The judge may consider:

  • The health of the grandparent
  • The home of the grandparent
  • The current relationship between the grandparent and grandchild.

If you are concerned about your grandchild, speak to a family law attorney to learn more about getting custody. To learn more, contact a company like Marlene Dancer Adams. 


8 November 2017

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