How JustAnswer Works:

  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.

Ask Cowgirl Lawyer Your Own Question

Cowgirl Lawyer
Cowgirl Lawyer, Lawyer
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 1422
Experience:  Attorney for 22 years. Family law, child custody and support, domestic violence.
Type Your Family Law Question Here...
Cowgirl Lawyer is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

11 years ago, our six-year-old daughter was removed from us

Resolved Question:

11 years ago, our six-year-old daughter was removed from us by CFS in Salt Lake City, UT because we were financially unstable and suffered chronic homelessness. She was adopted by a family there. Now, she is 16 going on 17 and is extremely unhappy in her adoptive home. She feels she doesn't belong there. She loves and misses her mother and I, and she wants to come home to us. Her adoptive parents are unhappy with her as well, and are prepared to let her go.

Meanwhile, after losing her, I resolved to prepare for the day she would want to return, as I knew she would. I completed five years of college with highest honors (3.96 gpa). I then decided to become a long-haul truck driver. I am in my fourth year as a professional driver and am earning roughly $60k/yr. I have moved her mother into a nice 3 br/2ba apartment in Prescott, AZ and we are settling in nicely. We are, however, still getting settled and have no savings.

How do I get her back?
Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  Cowgirl Lawyer replied 4 years ago.
HelloCustomer

First, congratulations on turning your life around!

Legally, you cannot go to court and challenge the adoption. Adoptions are generally permanent. If her adoptive parents were not willing to let her go, you would be without legal recourse to get her back.

However, since her adoptive parents are willing to allow her to come live with you, it is perfectly legal to do so. To effect a legal transfer of rights with respect to your daughter, there are a few options.

The first and probably cheapest way to do this would be for the adoptive parents to sign guardianship papers which would consent to the court making you your child's legal guardians. In Arizona guardianship proceedings are done in the Superior Court in your county. This is considered to be a probate case. Once the court entered an order making you your child's legal guardian, you would have the right to make parental decisions for her such as enrolling her in school, consenting to medical treatment, etc. Her adoptive parents would still legally be her parents (she would be able to inherit from them, etc.). But you would have parental rights over her as well.

A more expensive route would be for her adoptive parents to consent to allowing you to adopt your daughter. Again, this is a court case, similar to what you went through before, only this time by consent. This would allow you to be her legal parents and would sever all parental rights that her adoptive parents have.

With either option you will likely want to retain an attorney locally to assist you through the process.

I will be happy to clarify my answer if you need me to do so, or give you further explanation if you need me to do so.

If not, please click ACCEPT to pay Just Answer and me for helping you. Your positive feedback wins me points and costs you but a moment of time. A "bonus" awards me for an especially good job.

Next time you visit Just Answer, please ask for me by name by starting your question with "For Gloria M."

Good luck and best wishes!

Gloria M

Please be aware that my answer is not legal advice, it is merely informational and educational. Fees I receive for answering questions are paid for information, not legal advice. This forum is designed to provide only general information, to give you a basis of knowledge. You and I have not entered into an attorney/client relationship, and I am not responsible for your legal rights. The only way for us to be in an attorney/client relationship is if you have signed a written retainer agreement with my law firm, and I am only licensed to practice law in Illinois. You should consult with legal counsel in your area for specific information relevant to your situation.





Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Thank you for that information. It is certainly helpful. So any legal solution can only proceed with her adoptive parents' consent. It seems we may have to overcome the obstacle of the mother's misconceptions about us because of an 11 year-old casefile that was created solely for the purpose of justifying the removal of our daughter from us. We know that it is full of distortions, half-truths, and even outright fabrications because an arbitrator allowed us to remove only a handful of the most heinous of those fabrications when it was being drafted.

 

Assuming we can reach an accord, a few questions spring to mind. Even though my daughter currently resides in Utah, will the court jurisdiction be in Arizona? Also, as we will likely be unable to afford an attorney at this time, would a guardianship proceeding be something we could handle on our own? Finally, what might be required of us to succeed?

Expert:  Cowgirl Lawyer replied 4 years ago.
HelloCustomer

Thank you for the clarification. No, the jurisdiction would be where your daughter lives. That would be in Utah.

If the adoptive parents are agreeable to this, then I think you can probably do a guardianship on your own. I have known several clients who have managed to get through the guardianship process without attorney assistance.

This link should take you to Utah's guardianship of minors packet which is intended for people who want to proceed without an attorney:

http://forms.lp.findlaw.com/form/courtforms/state/ut/ut000013.pdf

I think this packet explains the process fairly clearly. Please let me know if you have any questions about it, however.

I will be happy to clarify my answer if you need me to do so, or give you further explanation if you need me to do so.

If not, please click ACCEPT to pay Just Answer and me for helping you. Your positive feedback wins me points and costs you but a moment of time. A "bonus" awards me for an especially good job.

Next time you visit Just Answer, please ask for me by name by starting your question with "For Gloria M."

Good luck and best wishes!

Gloria M

Please be aware that my answer is not legal advice, it is merely informational and educational. Fees I receive for answering questions are paid for information, not legal advice. This forum is designed to provide only general information, to give you a basis of knowledge. You and I have not entered into an attorney/client relationship, and I am not responsible for your legal rights. The only way for us to be in an attorney/client relationship is if you have signed a written retainer agreement with my law firm, and I am only licensed to practice law in Illinois. You should consult with legal counsel in your area for specific information relevant to your situation.





Cowgirl Lawyer, Lawyer
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 1422
Experience: Attorney for 22 years. Family law, child custody and support, domestic violence.
Cowgirl Lawyer and 9 other Family Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
Ah! You have certainly answered my question to my satisfaction. Thank you!

JustAnswer in the News:

 
 
 
Ask-a-doc Web sites: If you've got a quick question, you can try to get an answer from sites that say they have various specialists on hand to give quick answers... Justanswer.com.
JustAnswer.com...has seen a spike since October in legal questions from readers about layoffs, unemployment and severance.
Web sites like justanswer.com/legal
...leave nothing to chance.
Traffic on JustAnswer rose 14 percent...and had nearly 400,000 page views in 30 days...inquiries related to stress, high blood pressure, drinking and heart pain jumped 33 percent.
Tory Johnson, GMA Workplace Contributor, discusses work-from-home jobs, such as JustAnswer in which verified Experts answer people’s questions.
I will tell you that...the things you have to go through to be an Expert are quite rigorous.
 
 
 

What Customers are Saying:

 
 
 
  • Not only did he answer my Michigan divorce question but was also able to help me out with it, too. I have since won my legal case on this matter and thank you so much for it. Lee Michigan
< Last | Next >
  • Not only did he answer my Michigan divorce question but was also able to help me out with it, too. I have since won my legal case on this matter and thank you so much for it. Lee Michigan
  • Mr. Kaplun clearly had an exceptional understanding of the issue and was able to explain it concisely. I would recommend JustAnswer to anyone. Great service that lives up to its promises! Gary B. Edmond, OK
  • My Expert was fast and seemed to have the answer to my taser question at the tips of her fingers. Communication was excellent. I left feeling confident in her answer. Eric Redwood City, CA
  • I am very pleased with JustAnswer as a place to go for divorce or criminal law knowledge and insight. Michael Wichita, KS
  • PaulMJD helped me with questions I had regarding an urgent legal matter. His answers were excellent. Three H. Houston, TX
  • Anne was extremely helpful. Her information put me in the right direction for action that kept me legal, possible saving me a ton of money in the future. Thank you again, Anne!! Elaine Atlanta, GA
  • It worked great. I had the facts and I presented them to my ex-landlord and she folded and returned my deposit. The 50 bucks I spent with you solved my problem. Tony Apopka, FL
 
 
 

Meet The Experts:

 
 
 
  • Ely

    Counselor at Law

    Satisfied Customers:

    8085
    Private practice with focus on family, criminal, PI, consumer protection, and business consultation.
< Last | Next >
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/RA/ratioscripta/2012-6-13_2955_foto3.64x64.jpg Ely's Avatar

    Ely

    Counselor at Law

    Satisfied Customers:

    8085
    Private practice with focus on family, criminal, PI, consumer protection, and business consultation.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/LA/LawTalk/2012-6-6_17379_LawTalk.64x64.JPG LawTalk's Avatar

    LawTalk

    Attorney and Counselor at Law

    Satisfied Customers:

    6424
    27+ years legal experience. I remain current in Family Law through regular continuing education.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/FL/FLAandNYLawyer/2012-1-27_14349_3Fotolia25855429M.64x64.jpg FiveStarLaw's Avatar

    FiveStarLaw

    Lawyer

    Satisfied Customers:

    6336
    25 years of experience helping people like you.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/dkaplun/2009-05-17_173121_headshot_1_2.jpg Dimitry K., Esq.'s Avatar

    Dimitry K., Esq.

    Attorney

    Satisfied Customers:

    5987
    I provide family and divorce law advice to my clients in my firm.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/MU/multistatelaw/2011-11-27_173951_Tinaglamourshotworkglow102011.64x64.jpg Tina's Avatar

    Tina

    Lawyer

    Satisfied Customers:

    5773
    JD, 15 years legal experience including family law
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/BrianTMayer/2010-01-06_200119_BM.jpg Brandon M.'s Avatar

    Brandon M.

    Family Law Attorney

    Satisfied Customers:

    3810
    Attorney experienced in all aspects of family law
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/TU/TUSA/2012-6-6_55219_test.64x64.png Thoreau (T-USA)'s Avatar

    Thoreau (T-USA)

    Lawyer

    Satisfied Customers:

    2634
    Attorney