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Brandon M.
Brandon M., Family Law Attorney
Category: Family Law
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Experience:  Attorney experienced in all aspects of family law
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Grandsons Guardianship

Customer Question

My husband and I have guardianship of our 6 year old grandson. His parents were incarcerated on September 8, 2010. We hired a lawyer in in indiana where they live and was able to get custody with both parents agreeing to it and signing. There was only 1 court hearing on the matter.Both parents have been released from jail on September 9, 2011. They are both now employed and we would like to give them their son back. We live in Iowa and will not be able to monitor things once we give him back. Do we need to file papers and go back to court to return the child to them? Can we just take their child back to them without going to court? We are worried about anything happening and us being liable since we have guardianship.
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  Brandon M. replied 2 years ago.
Hello there:

Thank you for entrusting me with your question. A guardianship will not self-terminate, so "yes" any guardianship established can only be dissolved by order of the court. If the parents and the guardians are in agreement that it is in the child's best interest, the court almost always agrees.

It was not clear to me whether the guardianship was established in Indiana or Iowa. The termination would have to be ordered in the court where the guardianship was established. Either the parent(s) or the guardian(s) may file a petition to terminate the guardianship. Assuming that the guardianship was established through the probate division, as opposed to the juvenile dependency (CPS) system, the termination petition would be filed through the same. Most counties have forms available through the probate division and the party seeking termination would just need to ask the clerk of the division for the forms needed to terminate a guardianship.

I understand that you may have follow-up questions. Let me know if further clarification is needed. Thank you.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
ok, CPS in Indiana had our grandson for one weekend as both parents were incarcerated. We hired a lawyer in Decatur County Indiana and went to court for guardianship. We went to the hearing at court where CPS was goingto open a full CHINS case. Our lawyer already talked to CPS and they knew we would be there with already filed Guardianship papers. CPS lawyer talked to the judge and decided to not pursue the case if the judge granted the guardianship with both parents signing and agreeing to it. My husband and I live in Iowa. The only way to get our grandson and not have him in CPS foster care services was to get full guardianship this way. The plan was always to give him back to his parents once they were able to care for him again. In 2 weeks we will be making the trip to Indiana to take the child home to them. I do not think that we will be able to get through court during the week we are there due to thanksgiving. Can we use a notarized tempory guardianship form to allow them to take him till we can settle the matter of the guardianship termination?
Expert:  Brandon M. replied 2 years ago.
Thank you for the clarification. There is not a temporary guardianship form; the right of guardianship does not transfer like a property right--it must be approved by the court and there is no way around that. In the event of "CPS guardianship", getting the termination is more difficult than terminating a probate guardianship because the state is also a party to the action. The court can still be petitioned, but it has to be through the juvenile dependency (CPS) system and CPS has a say in whether termination of the guardianship is appropriate.

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