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What rights do parents lose when their child becomes a ward a family member?

Colon, MI |

What rights do the parents lose if guardianship is placed with a family member? I have not been able to get a strait answer from any one. My daughter has ADHD and a possible mood disorder. She is only six. My parents filed for guardianship even though they do not know what the consequences mean for me. They want me to just agree and not fight it, but I can't do that without knowing what will happen to my rights as her mother. They have power of attorney, but they want her on their insurance so she is free to get treatment out of the county. I just have medicaid for her, and they don't think it is good enough. What is worse is they did this behind my back, and I found out about it from my sister who lived next door. When I found out about it they did come clean, but I am having big misgivings about this whole ordeal. I have been trying to research this online and through local lawers, but I haven't had any luck. I am hoping you can help. I don't even know whether or not to fight it. I need to weigh all of the pros and cons before making my decision, but I don't know all of the cons. I am at my wits end, and in a bad struggle internally. Please help me.

Attorney Answers 1


The Court typically considers the best interest of the child. Your parents do not have a greater right to custody/guardianship of your child under that standard unless you are "unfit". Guardianship is a fluid concept and can change. However, once that child has been living and bonding with someone other than a parent it becomes difficult to change the status quo. The courts like children to be in a stable loving environment. You do not lose your parental rights without the filing of a formal proceeding and a showing of unfitness. However, when a nonparent has guardianship/custody of a child it is crucial for the parent to maintain a presence in the life of the child. Meaning, You must visit and spend quality time with the child to make sure the child continues to be emotionally attached to you as a parent. The court will also look at financial support if you want to change guardianship/custody back to you( the parent).

Be careful, once you give someone custody or guardianship you will have to fight to get the child returned to you unless there is an agreement between the parties.

The issue of your child's welfare is too important for you to proceed without an attorney. Some states will appoint a lawyer for you free of charge if you can't pay one.

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