When Grandparents Need to Gain Custody of a Grandchild

A Grandfather Gaining Custody of His Grandchild

Sometimes, it’s in a child’s best interest to be raised by their grandparents. However, grandparents’ rights are limited in Florida. While there are some situations in which the court will provide temporary or sole custody to a grandparent, it is uncommon. If you wish to pursue this, you will need the help of an experienced custody lawyer in Hernando County, FL. The following are some basics you should know before scheduling a legal consultation.

Temporary Custody

Extended family members have the right to gain temporary (also known as concurrent) custody of a minor child if the parents cannot care for the child or cannot be located. A custody lawyer can help achieve this by submitting a completed Florida Temporary Guardianship Form and arguing your case in court. Bear in mind that the judge will consider these factors while determining whether to award temporary custody:

  • Grandparents’ Ability to Care for the Child
  • Willingness to Allow Contact with the Parents
  • Child’s Preferences
  • Health of the Grandparents
  • Stability of the Proposed Home

Temporary custody is a short-term solution; it ends once a parent can return to the primary caregiver role. Regardless, it is a valuable first step in cases where the child’s well-being is in danger.

Sole Custody

Under certain circumstances, grandparents may be able to obtain sole custody of their grandchild. These cases are uncommon, so you would need assistance from a skilled custody lawyer to better your chances of success. The court must be convinced that the parents are unfit or pose a danger to their child—and that the grandparents are the next best option for the child.