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I was given gaurdianship of an 8 month old by his mother, she has no stable residence and is a drug abuser

Carlisle, PA |

I have heard she has used in the same room as the baby and smoked weed with him right beside her- ccis has been looking for her and I notified them I have the child- they are coming tomorrow to check on him. We have been an important part of this childs life since day 1, as we cared for him while she was "out" babies birth father just stepped into picture friday and proved to be father by dna- do we have any legal standing rights to this child with a notorized gaurdianship paper? Also birth father was in jail for selling drugs( 2 1/2 yrs ago) and is currently smoking marajuana ( he has told me himself)

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Attorney answers 3


If the mother and father gave you the notarized guardianship paper they can revoke guardianship at any time. If child services obtains an order declaring the child dependent then they can recommend that you be a temporary foster parent until the parents jump through some hoops before obtaining custody of the child. Unless you have raised the child in your home without either of the parents living there for several months, you probably will not establish that you have standing to seek custody of the child in custody court. In other words, you probably do not have any rights but CYS may let the child live with you pending them working with the parents. If the parents take too long to get it together then CYS may seek to terminate the parents' rights and permit you to seek to adopt the child, but that will be after the parents are given many chances to prove themselves from here forward.

The above answer is intended solely for general informational purposes and does not create an attorney client relationship. You should consult with an experienced attorney regarding all of the details of your particular situation before taking action.



Thank you so much, that is what I thought but I wanted to be sure. The goal my husband I have is to see his mother become some sort of parent not to strip her of her rights but she has moved with him 9 times in 8 months and has not been any sort of parent to him other than just phycially being there. My hopes are that CYS requires drug testing and parenting classes to ensure his safety but that is in there hands. Until they tell us what to do, we will continue to love him and treat him as our own as we do everyday since he has been born. Thank you

Jeanne B. Costopoulos

Jeanne B. Costopoulos


You are very welcome. Sounds to me as though this child is blessed to have you in his life.


I agree with attorney Costopoulos. I would suggest you contact an experienced family law attorney in your area. An attorney can ask you the specific questions needed to determine what rights DO you have, what rights you POSSIBLY have, and what your options are.

I wish you the best of luck.

The responses provided on this site are intended for informational purposes only and should not be construed as providing legal advice regarding an individual situation. No attorney-client relationship is created between the reader and Jeffrey S. Helffrich, Esquire, or between the reader and Masorti and Donaldson, P.C.


It is possible that you have standing to file for custody if you can establish that you assumed the role of a parent. This is a very fact specific inquiry, and the best way to know if this is a viable option for you is to speak with a local attorney.

Karen L. DeMarco, Esquire

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