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How to get custody of grandchild

Sunnyside, WA |

my son has a 5 yr old and 9 year old. he has legal custody of 9 yr old, but nothing in writing for 5 yr old. moms been out of the picture about 90% of the time during past 5 yrs. 5 yr old is not biological daughter, but has cared for her and been there since before birth. child knows nothing of this. mom left 9 yr old and 5 yr old in dads care. dad and grandma have been raising these kids for 5 yrs, and longer. dad has medical cards, wic information in his and grandma's name. mom in and out of prison, currently is now. mom decided she want aunt to have Guardianship, then aunt calls authorities to say grandma kidnapped the 5 yr old. sherriff picks up 5 yr old, and grandma has to go to court. what can be done about this? this was not kidnapping if child has been with grandma & da

Attorney Answers 2


  1. Dad and Grandma need to consult a family lawyer. The biological parent has priority under the law, unless parental rights are terminated by a court. Given bio mom's track record, that might be possible in this case, but courts are extremely reluctant to do that. Dad and Grandma might seek permaent custody through the family law court, or they might seek guardianship thru the probate court. The fact that Dad and Grandma has had the child for five years is a very strong circumstance. Dad and Grandma will definitely need an attorney to sort through this and to determine what rights they can assert. Any time custody or guardianship of a minor is involved, the presumptions are in favor of the biological parent, and any case made on behalf of Dad and Grandma will be facts and circumstances intensive. This will be an expensive court proceeding, and they will need a good, local family law attorney.


  2. Consulting with an experienced family law attorney will be your best bet.