There are times when a child will have relationships with adults outside their parents. For instance, a child’s grandparents, aunts, uncles, and stepparents may all be important in his or her life. Any time something happens to a parent, these other parties may need to step in to help or to take care of the child. That’s when visitation and nonparent custody rights may come into question.
What happens if a child’s parents are deceased due to an accident? Someone will need to step in to take over guardianship or to adopt the child. If you’re an aunt or uncle, older sibling, grandparent or stepparent, this may be a time when you want to look into your rights for custody.
A guardian is normally identified in a parent’s will. Most parents will have a will in place just in case the unthinkable happens. With these plans, the guardian is predetermined and is aware of the potential for taking over the care of a child. If a parent doesn’t have a will with guardianship plan, then others may need to seek custody through a court of law.
Following the death of both parents, the incarceration of both or one parent and the inability to care for a child on the part of the other, your custody rights may come into play. Our website has more information on what to do if you want to become a child’s guardian and how likely it will be for your claim to be accepted in court. With the right documents and support, you can make a strong case for the custody of a child you love.