Can A Grandparent Get Custody Of Their Grandkids?

It can be tough for grandparents to see their grandkids living in an environment that is not good for them. You may not be aware that you do have rights as the grandparent, and it is possible to get custody of grandkids when the parents are not doing their job. Here is what you need to know about it.

Start By Hiring a Lawyer

The legal process of taking custody will be tough, so it helps to work with a lawyer who can assist with it. You'll first meet with them for a consultation, where you'll describe the kind of environment your grandkids are currently living in. Be aware that there are legal definitions of what makes an environment bad, and a lawyer will help determine if you have a case for seeking custody. This usually happens when a child is living in a house that is infested with pests, does not have working utilities, or illegal activity is happening in the home.

The situation can be complicated if both parents are not living together. That is because the living situation will be rectified by having the child live with the other parent if they decide they want custody, making the case much more complicated. The custody battle will be easier if both parents are living in the same home.

How A Lawyer Can Help

A lawyer can get the ball rolling on gathering the evidence you need to justify getting custody of your grandkids. This includes getting a restraining order so that you will receive temporary custody, and having an investigation done to collect evidence about their living situation.

Most custody battles are solved through mediation, and it's possible that you may not even go to court to get custody. If you cannot reach an agreement, a lawyer will help take the case to court where a judge will make the final decision.

What a Lawyer Will Charge

When working with a family lawyer, expect to be charged by the hour for their legal services. This is because custody cases can be complicated, which makes it difficult to charge a flat fee unless it is straightforward. Hourly fees start as low as $75, and could be as high as $400-$500 for complicated legal battles. Expect to pay a large fee up front as a retainer, and to have hourly fees deducted from that retainer.

If you are concerned about the living situation of your grandkids, know that legal action can be taken to get them out of it. For a family law firm, contact a company such as Topalian & Associates.