How do I file for child custody of my nephew? 22 Answers as of July 03, 2013

How do I file for custody of my nephew when his parents are not good parents and use drugs and gave him to me? My brother and his girl friend gave me their son because they are homeless and on drugs. How do I file for custody?

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Law Office of Jane E. Ginsburg
Law Office of Jane E. Ginsburg | Jane Ginsburg
When someone other than a parent wants to obtain custody of a child, it is handled through Probate Court; it is called a probate guardianship. It does not terminate the parents' rights but rather gives someone else custody and responsibility for the child. It is not permanent and the parents have the option of returning to the court and asking that the guardianship be terminated.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 11/14/2011
Rogosheske Lawton
Rogosheske Lawton | Kelly Lawton Rogosheske
If the parents are endangering the child through neglect, abuse, or disregard for the childs well-being, a non-parent can seek custody to protect the best interests of the child.
Answer Applies to: Minnesota
Replied: 11/14/2011
Petit & Dommershausen SC
Petit & Dommershausen SC | Tajara Dommershausen
A guardianship would be more likely than custody. You can contact the local corporation counsel office and see if they will help you.
Answer Applies to: Wisconsin
Replied: 11/15/2011
Horizons Law Group, LLC
Horizons Law Group, LLC | Michelle B. Fitzgerald
You would file for guardianship, which gives you legal authority/placement of your nephew as part of that process.
Answer Applies to: Wisconsin
Replied: 11/14/2011
The Law Office of Cathy R. Cook
The Law Office of Cathy R. Cook | Cathy R. Cook
You file in the juvenile court in the county where you live. If they will do so, have the parents sign an agreement giving you custody. If they won't agree, you will have to prove they are unfit.
Answer Applies to: Ohio
Replied: 11/14/2011
    Alfred Law Firm
    Alfred Law Firm | Janice Alfred
    You simply need to petition the court for custody and show that the parents are unfit and that awarding custody to them will harm the child. With these facts, I think you may have a good chance of success. It would be even better if you could get the parents to consent to you obtaining custody.
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 11/14/2011
    Law Office of James Bordonaro
    Law Office of James Bordonaro | James Albert Bordonaro
    You need a petition for custodianship. You should hire a lawyer to guide you through the process.
    Answer Applies to: Kansas
    Replied: 11/14/2011
    Law Office of Patricia Van Haren
    Law Office of Patricia Van Haren | Patricia Van Haren
    You would need to file for guardianship of your nephew. This can be done through the courthouse. You may wish to contact an attorney to assist you with the process as it can be complicated. If you know where the parents are, they can consent to your guardianship which will make the process go much quicker.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 11/14/2011
    Dunnings Law Firm
    Dunnings Law Firm | Steven Dunnings
    Hire an attorney and file a petition for guardianship.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 11/14/2011
    Law Office Of Jody A. Miller
    Law Office Of Jody A. Miller | Jody A. Miller
    Retain an attorney to file a custody action. It does not have to be drawn out and expensive if the parents agree.
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 11/14/2011
    Law Offices of Arlene D. Kock
    Law Offices of Arlene D. Kock | Arlene D. Kock
    File a guardianship petition and to speed the guardianship along, get the parents to sign declarations consenting to the court granting your request.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 11/14/2011
    Attorney Paul Lancia
    Attorney Paul Lancia | Paul Lancia
    You need to protect your legal rights and representing yourself is not the way to do so. Representing yourself is a recipe for problems, if not now, in the future. Retaining a lawyer need not be as difficult as you think.
    Answer Applies to: Massachusetts
    Replied: 11/14/2011
    Law Office of James Lentz
    Law Office of James Lentz | James Lentz
    I'm not sure why everyone thinks obtaining custody over a child is a "do-it-yourself project", but it isn't. This is a life changing event, where the parents will almost certainly change their mind and fight you. You need a lawyer.
    Answer Applies to: Ohio
    Replied: 11/11/2011
    Glenn E. Tanner
    Glenn E. Tanner | Glenn E. Tanner
    File a third party custody petition in the Superior court of the child's county.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 11/11/2011
    Attorney & Counselor at Law
    Attorney & Counselor at Law | John Hugger
    If you have lived with the child within the past six months you can petition the District Court in Colorado in the county the child presently resides in for parenting time, solely or shared with others, and for sole or joint decision making for the child. Colorado Revised Statute sets out the factors the court must consider in making its orders. Colorado no longer has "custody"; instead, parenting time counting overnights, and decision making.
    Answer Applies to: Colorado
    Replied: 11/11/2011
    Ashman Law Office
    Ashman Law Office | Glen Edward Ashman
    Step one: you get a lawyer. Step two, depending on what the parents will sign, you either seek guardianship or seek to adopt.
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 11/11/2011
    The McDonnell Law Firm, PLLC
    The McDonnell Law Firm, PLLC | Patrick J. McDonnell
    Just file a custody petition in Family Court.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 7/3/2013
    Reza Athari & Associates, PLLC | Seth L. Reszko
    There is a presumption for custody to be awarded to the parents, however, there are exceptions that include custody to the parents would be detrimental to the hcild and custody to the non-parent is required to serve the best interests of the child. If you are going to seek custody and it is going to be contested, I strongly recommend that you hire counsel. If you cannot afford counsel, the Family Court has a Self-Help Center to assist you with the forms to file to get started.
    Answer Applies to: Nevada
    Replied: 11/11/2011
    Law Office of Andrew E. Teitelman, PC | Andrew E. Teitelman
    There are two ways to explore: 1) guardianship and 2) custody. I would consult an attorney to discuss which option may be best for you and what steps are needed to make it happen.
    Answer Applies to: Oregon
    Replied: 11/11/2011
    Donaldson Stewart, PC
    Donaldson Stewart, PC | Monica H. Donaldson Stewart
    Depending on the circumstances (and whether the parents are willing to provide their consent), it might be easier for you to file for guardianship of your nephew in juvenile court rather than filing for custody in the family court.
    Answer Applies to: Arizona
    Replied: 11/11/2011
    Law Offices of Stephanie Lee Ehrbright, Esq.
    Law Offices of Stephanie Lee Ehrbright, Esq. | Stephanie Lee Ehrbright
    It would be easiest if they will consent to you having custody. It sounds like they may if they gave him to you. You would need to file in Superior Court. If they will not consent, you should at least see about getting a Power of Attorney so that you can do things like take your nephew to the doctor, enroll him in daycare/school, etc.
    Answer Applies to: Arizona
    Replied: 11/11/2011
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