Skip to main content

My child has been living with her dads parents for almost a year with no legal permission i want her back what can i do?

Salem, OR |

i gave her to him he couldnt take care of her so she went with his dad and his dads wife. i have been calling her a couple of times a week and am trying to get her back but they have cut off their phone and they live three hours away, can i just go take her she is my child

+ Read More

Attorney answers 2


It depends on what you mean when you say that you "gave [your daughter] to [her father]." If you granted him legal custody, then he has the right to object to her relocation, and if you removed her from a home he could ask for legal assistance, including police assistance, in getting her back. If there is no judgment of custody, then in theory, you and he have equal parental rights to your child, and her grandparents have no inherent rights at all. So in that case, you could in theory just swoop in and take her away. But bear in mind that if you do that, you run the risk that the father could file a custody petition - or, so could the grandparents, though they have a much higher standard of proof to bear.

The best thing to do, most likely, is to file a custody petition against the father, alleging that he has not had care of the child for the past year and asking for legal custody yourself. The father's parents could intervene, but as I said, their burden in doing so is a lot higher. You should consult with an attorney in private if you mean to take legal action.

Please read the following notice: <br> <br> Jay Bodzin is licensed to practice law in the State of Oregon and the Federal District of Oregon, and cannot give advice about the laws of other jurisdictions. All comments on this site are intended for informational purposes only, and do not constitute legal advice or create an attorney-client relationship. No posts or comments on this site are in any way confidential. Each case is unique. You are advised to have counsel at all stages of any legal proceeding, and to speak with your own lawyer in private to get advice about your specific situation. <br> <br> Jay Bodzin, Northwest Law Office, 2075 SW First Avenue, Suite 2J, Portland, OR 97201 | Telephone: 503-227-0965 | Facsimile: 503-345-0926 | Email: | Online:


Check out the "legal guides" about custody and parenting time on my profile page of this website. THEN, consult with a family law attorney. Good luck.

Be sure to designate "best answer." If you live in Oregon, you may call me for more detailed advice, 503-650-9662. Please be aware that each answer on this website is based upon the facts, or lack thereof, provided in the question. To be sure you get complete and comprehensive answers, based upon the totality of your situation, contact a local attorney who specializes in the area of law that involves your legal problem. Diane L. Gruber has been practicing law in Oregon for 26 years, specializing in family law, bankruptcy, estate planning and probate. Note: Diane L. Gruber does not represent you until a written fee agreement has been signed by you and Diane L. Gruber, and the fee listed in the agreement has been paid.

Child custody topics

Recommended articles about Child custody

What others are asking

Can't find what you're looking for?

Post a free question on our public forum.

Ask a Question

- or -

Search for lawyers by reviews and ratings.

Find a Lawyer