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  1. #1

    Unhappy How Can I Get Custody Of My Granddaughter?

    My question involves a child custody case from the State of: Florida

    My granddaughter is 15. Her dad lives in another state, and would be glad to give up custody if it means no more child support. Her mother (our daughter) doesn't want her except occasionally on a weekend. The mother will not give up custody, because she will have to give up the child support (none of which has come to help her child). I need to be able to do things like get my grandchild medical insurance and sign for her learner's permit. I couldn't care less about the money, I just need to be able to legally help her do normal teen things like driving.

    If you've got any ideas at all, please share. I've looked over the emancipation law for FL, and it doesn't fit this case. What constitutes abandonment? Could we file under the grounds that her mother provides no material support?

    Thanks in advance for any help you are able to give.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Posts
    9,085

    Default Re: How Can I Get Custody Of My Granddaughter?

    Why not ask your daughter to grant you guardianship?

    It will satisfy most of the issues you are talking about, and the money still goes to her.

    Having said that, the father is an idiot to keep paying something to a woman that is not caring for the child, but that is a question he will have to bring up in court.

  3. #3

    Default Re: How Can I Get Custody Of My Granddaughter?

    Cyjeff,

    That would be fantastic. Just one more glich: She won't sign just to get her father mad. We did have the 15 yo and the 11 yo, but she came and got the 11 yo who is small, cute, and smart. Mama can't deal with a 15 yo who makes her look older than 24. Full disclosure: she still has living with her our "highly strung" tweener and her youngest lives with her father, the only semi-responsible parent. 5 marriages, 4 children, 3 dads. Sigh. Pregnancy was always the bait, unfortunately.

    He pays support and says nary a word, 'cause she's got ways of making life pure hell, even if you live in another state. Too, he pays it as a guilt reducer since he spends *no* time with them at all (he's the dad of two) and they haven't yet met their new half-sister.

    Any other suggestions?

  4. #4

    Default Re: How Can I Get Custody Of My Granddaughter?

    Too, you have to catch the mom in a good mood, and needing something for which she is willing to trade. She's withholding information on the 11 yo re: what new school she's attending (we just want to be sure she IS attending) just because she can. It gives her pleasure to frustrate our best efforts. It is very difficult to not share what I really thing about the mom to my granddaughter, but I'm doing it because I don't want any of my opinions to bleed off on my grand.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Posts
    29

    Default Re: How Can I Get Custody Of My Granddaughter?

    I saw this thread and thought I would put in my two cents worth. Be careful. Be very careful. I did exactly that same thing 4 years ago under different circumstances, but you need to protect yourself in the process. People, moms, dads and grandparents do change their minds. And anything a court can do can become undone with enough effort.

    I am no expert, but over $100,000.00 in legal fees later and dozens of court hearings, mediation sessions, etc., I can tell you the biggest single issue you have is if mom or dad change their minds at a later date. And it doesn’t matter over what part of it. In our case it has only been about visitation schedules. And the child has visited with her parents no less than 44 times in the past 10 months since the case has been “closed” far exceeding the expectations of the “final” order. But in our situation it has nothing to do with the child. And children are hurt every day because of it.

    Sorry to all of you reading this who are attorneys, Let me say for the record my attorney earned every penny I have paid her and much, much more. And she has done much for free just because of her sense of injustice over what we have been through.

    I suggest filing for termination of parental rights for both parents, hopefully with their consent for you to adopt, and any futher agreement that you can have an attorney put together to strengthen it. I would never again accept a guardianship. In a guardianship the court retains jurisdiction even after the case is "closed" and the parties can file motions at any time, with or without merrit dragging you into court.

    It is much too easy for Dad (or Mom) to come back to town and decide to drag you into court over nonsence, time and time again. The judge will throw it out, but the attorneys will end up with your retirement. And in most of these cases Mom and Dad can file motions with the courts at no cost to themselves.

    The laws are structured to protect the rights of the parents first, the children second, and you as a guardian dead last.

    You are lucky in that your grandchild is 15, ours was 3 when this started for us (she’s 8 now). And you can hedge your gamble in this with the fact you will only have a few years to deal with it. But the problems are out there.

    Be careful.

    Granddad50

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