Guardianships
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When You Can Be The Best Home For A Child

While it can be a painful experience, it is sometimes necessary to take over guardianship of a child in need. These situations include:

  • When your own adult child is no longer fit to be a parent for his or her own children.
  • When your sibling’s children are being neglected because of drugs or alcohol.
  • When you’ve been left with a grandchild and the parents have disappeared.
  • When tragedy strikes and you are called upon as the godparents or closest living kin

These are just a few of the circumstances that lead family members to seek legal guardianships to protect their nieces, nephews and grandchildren in the short term, or as the first step toward adoption.

Protecting The Rights Of Children In Need

No one wants to take a child from his or her parent’s home, but sometimes situations demand it for the safety and health of the child. Whether those children are facing physical abuse, neglect or abandonment, sometimes petitioning the courts for a guardianship is the only way to ensure that the children do not stay in danger or become wards of the state.

Many guardianships are contested, meaning you have to go to court. In other cases, guardianship is a solution that allows the natural parents time to get their lives back in order and become responsible parents. If your own child, brother or sister is facing serious chemical dependency or mental health issues, a guardianship contingent on the parent completing a course of professional treatment can be a way to protect children in the short term.

With 10 years of experience as a lawyer handling all forms of family law issues, I have seen families step in to help the children temporarily while a parent cleans up his or her life or as a first step on the permanent road toward adoption.

Protecting The Rights Of Legitimate Parents

In my experience, however, I have also observed situations where family members unfairly tried to use guardianship to take rightful custody from a parent. When this happens, you need strong representation from an attorney dedicated to protecting you and your children.

I am a strong defender for parental rights, and know that guardianship should only be an option when a child is in real danger and not just when a grandparent or sibling disagrees with how you choose to raise your children.

In the end, the court cares about protecting the children. I create reasonable expectations for my clients, whether they are people seeking guardianship over a child who is sincerely in trouble or parents who are defending against an unnecessary petition from a grandparent. Contact me today to discuss your guardianship concerns during your consultation.