An adult who wants custody of a child but is not their birth parent faces an uphill battle. Courts rarely grant non-parents these rights because it is believed that the birth parents provide the best guidance and most attachments to the children. It is only possible for a non-parent adult to win custody of a child if they can show that they are:
Both of these hurdles are extremely difficult to clear and even if they are met, the non-parent custody must still be shown to be in the child's best interests.
Although this answer may vary by state, the general standards are:
Extraordinary negative circumstances must be shown for a biological parent to be determined unfit to parent. Factors can include:
Typically this group includes stepparents or same sex partners because they are most likely to live and form bonds with the child.
Non-parent custody disputes can be a very bitter area of the law, and it is important that you file all the proper legal paperwork and present your side in the best light. An experienced family law attorney can help you at all stages of your case and make sure you get the best results possible.
Last Modified: 09-21-2017 09:40 PM PDTLaw Library Disclaimer
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