Grandparents having rights to child custody


Dear MarkM:

Greetings. Yes, it is my opinion the grandparents can file an action for custody. No, the mother’s financial history would not make her unfit, but leaving her child to another’s care for long periods of time would. The grandparents can file for custody and ask for the child to be placed in their care and custody.

My suggestion though is that they retain an attorney to assist them and that they act immediately. Thank you.

Janet L. Fritts
Attorney with Rosen Divorce
4101 Lake Boone Trail, Suite 500
Raleigh, North Carolina 27607
919.787.6668 main phone
919.256.1665 direct fax

10925 David Taylor Drive, Suite 100
Charlotte, North Carolina 28262
704.644.2831 main voice
704.307.4595 main fax


The response posted above is based upon the limited factual information made available and is not intended as a full and complete response to the question. The only reliable manner to obtain complete and adequate legal advice is to consult with an attorney, fully explain your situation, and allow the attorney sufficient opportunity to research the applicable law and facts required to render an accurate opinion. The basic information provided above is intended as a public service but a full discussion with an attorney should be undertaken before taking any action.


I apologize for the length but here it goes:
Mother has an 8 year old child and is a single parent due to death of childs father. Mother has not had a job in 8 years and has not had her own residence. While mother was living with ex-boyfriend, mother let her son stay with her Mother and father for 4 years on and off, mainly with her parents. Mother has left child in Grandmothers care for extended periods of time, 3 months over seas as well as most afternoon/nights while going to college. Mother breaks up with boyfriend and moves back home where her parents support her and child for 1 1/2 years. Support for clothing, food, shelter and basic necessities. Mother has been receiving Social Security for her child for 8 years since biological fathers death and unfortunately has spent it on Non-SSA guidelines. Mother then moves out of parents house and marries a man after 3 months of datng. Grandmother and Grandfather have been in childs life and has had the child living with them for approximately 7 years. Does the Grand Parents have any rights for Custody? Does the irract behavior of mother’s poor finances and inappropriate SSA fundings usage make her unfit? Also mother has lapsed for 3 months on Child Health and Dental insurance. Mother and new husband are currently living at her friends house until after the court date whre they plan on moving out of state.
What rights do the grandparents have? Sorry if this was too long and kind of short on the whole story.

Mark Spieler