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  1. #1
    nicole.dantoni is offline Junior Member
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    Reversing a temporary guardianship

    What is the name of your state (only U.S. law)? Idaho
    In January 2008 my parents and I agreed that it would be in the best interests of my sons (now 3 and 4) to be in their temporary custody. I hadvoluntarily checked myself into a rehabilitation facility to begin recovery for an alcohol addiction and I wanted my kids to have the health insurance that I could not offer them but that my parents could. After being released, I did have a relapse, but have currently been sober since June 20th of 2008. My children still reside with my parents most of the time, but stay with my fiance and me at least 3 nights a week. My relationship with my parents is good, we get along better now than we ever have. I have steady employment, my own home and enough income to take care of my children myself. My mom, however, thinks that because I don't make as much as she and my dad do that I cannot take care of them the way they can. She thinks I should have to supply her with a budget of exactly how I would spend my income if the kids were to live with me. I think that is ridiculous. I am ok with being able to have them the 3 nights a week that I do, but think that I am getting close to ready to have them full time. Also, my fiance has a fantastic relationship with both my kids and my parents and wants to adopt the kids when he is able. Their father is not now, nor has ever been, in the picture. What are my rights? I know that I might have to wait a while longer before I can go in front of a judge and get them back for good, but I am willing to wait. I just want to be adequately prepared. Any advice would be appreciated. Thank you
  2. #2
    LdiJ is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by nicole.dantoni View Post
    What is the name of your state (only U.S. law)? Idaho
    In January 2008 my parents and I agreed that it would be in the best interests of my sons (now 3 and 4) to be in their temporary custody. I hadvoluntarily checked myself into a rehabilitation facility to begin recovery for an alcohol addiction and I wanted my kids to have the health insurance that I could not offer them but that my parents could. After being released, I did have a relapse, but have currently been sober since June 20th of 2008. My children still reside with my parents most of the time, but stay with my fiance and me at least 3 nights a week. My relationship with my parents is good, we get along better now than we ever have. I have steady employment, my own home and enough income to take care of my children myself. My mom, however, thinks that because I don't make as much as she and my dad do that I cannot take care of them the way they can. She thinks I should have to supply her with a budget of exactly how I would spend my income if the kids were to live with me. I think that is ridiculous. I am ok with being able to have them the 3 nights a week that I do, but think that I am getting close to ready to have them full time. Also, my fiance has a fantastic relationship with both my kids and my parents and wants to adopt the kids when he is able. Their father is not now, nor has ever been, in the picture. What are my rights? I know that I might have to wait a while longer before I can go in front of a judge and get them back for good, but I am willing to wait. I just want to be adequately prepared. Any advice would be appreciated. Thank you
    You need to be sober longer than you have been. You voluntarily gave them guardianship, which normally means that you should also be able to revoke that guardianship, but your parents can make the case that you have a serious alcohol addiction and that you have not been sober long enough to resume custody. However, you can also make the case that your parents have had no problem with you having them 3 nights a week.

    I would wait until you have been sober for a full year, and then let your parents know that you intend to petition the courts to terminate the voluntary guardianship.

    Your parents have also gotten extra attached to the kids since they have been living with them, so a gradual transition back into your full custody might be in the best interest of everyone. You might tell your parents that you would like to have them 4 nights a week starting now...and see how that goes.
  3. #3
    summerdawn is offline Senior Member
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    Having been in a smiliar situation, I have to say that I think you should go to court ASAP to try to get more parenting time and petition to transition to full custody of your child. I had 4 months sober when I was awarded full custody of my son back. Make sure you have documentation of any and all treatment/classes/AA meetings etc you have gone to for proof to the court. Also, if you have done any voulnteer work with women who are newer in sobriety make sure to get letters from your drug counselors. You have, what, 8 months sober? Make sure they know that as soon as you straightened up your life you went right back to court. Continue to work the program and go to meetings, get yourself a court card and keep it current to show the judge that you are still working on your sobriety.

    Were you present for the initial guardianship hearing? Do you have your Court order? Did the judge order you to complete any specific classes or counseling before you got the kids back? If he did, you need to go in and show him that you've completed your requirements. When the judge considers giving you custody back he will not be submitting your budget for your mom to review. It sounds to me like she needs to relinquish some of the control she has and the smoothest way for her to do that is to put the decision in the judge's hands.
  4. #4
    Ohiogal is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by LdiJ View Post
    You need to be sober longer than you have been. You voluntarily gave them guardianship, which normally means that you should also be able to revoke that guardianship, but your parents can make the case that you have a serious alcohol addiction and that you have not been sober long enough to resume custody. However, you can also make the case that your parents have had no problem with you having them 3 nights a week.

    I would wait until you have been sober for a full year, and then let your parents know that you intend to petition the courts to terminate the voluntary guardianship.

    Your parents have also gotten extra attached to the kids since they have been living with them, so a gradual transition back into your full custody might be in the best interest of everyone. You might tell your parents that you would like to have them 4 nights a week starting now...and see how that goes.
    Why does she have to wait until she is sober a year? Quite frankly she is sober now. This was a voluntary guardianship. I have seen the STATE return children to parents that have only a few months sobriety. She can get her children now. You are the one who always says that PARENTS rights supercede grandparents and that they are ALWAYS superior to parents when it comes to the children. Now why is that changing in this case?

    By the way CASAs have used the argument of a year of sobriety and have been shot down. If that was the requirement PARENTS whose children were removed would NEVER get their children back.
    Parents should remember 3 things: Love your kids more than you hate your ex; when you have children the relationship with the other parent is until death; your children determine what type of nursing home you end up in.
    Nothing stated by me should be taken as giving you legal advice or forming an attorney/client relationship.

    Attorney-GAL in Ohio.

    I've removed the knife from my back, polished it, and will one day return it -- long after you think I have forgotten.
  5. #5
    LdiJ is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ohiogal View Post
    Why does she have to wait until she is sober a year? Quite frankly she is sober now. This was a voluntary guardianship. I have seen the STATE return children to parents that have only a few months sobriety. She can get her children now. You are the one who always says that PARENTS rights supercede grandparents and that they are ALWAYS superior to parents when it comes to the children. Now why is that changing in this case?

    By the way CASAs have used the argument of a year of sobriety and have been shot down. If that was the requirement PARENTS whose children were removed would NEVER get their children back.
    You are right...my thought processes were off on that one.
  6. #6
    Ohiogal is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by LdiJ View Post
    You are right...my thought processes were off on that one.
    I understand that a year is a great length of time and a major milestone in sobriety and I jumped a bit hard on you for it. I apologize. I had a CASA in a case of mine testify that until the parents were sober for a year with no relapses there would not be a recommendation for return. The court shot down that idea. Well, the problem is the state only keeps children for a year on the original case with the possibility of two six month extensions. To have parents be required to be sober for a year without relapses before children are returned could cause many parents to never have their children returned due to the law. The courts normally want to see a period of months -- in case after case that has been my experience. Most parents are in good shape if they go a quarter of the year straight with NO relapse and clean screens.

    Again, I understand where you are coming from and realize the importance of that one year of sobriety and maybe should not have jumped as "harshly" as I did on you.

    What I would suggest to OP is to petition the court for the children to be returned to you AND if it makes the courts more comfortable consent to submit to random urine screens for the next three months.
    Parents should remember 3 things: Love your kids more than you hate your ex; when you have children the relationship with the other parent is until death; your children determine what type of nursing home you end up in.
    Nothing stated by me should be taken as giving you legal advice or forming an attorney/client relationship.

    Attorney-GAL in Ohio.

    I've removed the knife from my back, polished it, and will one day return it -- long after you think I have forgotten.

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