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My mother in law suffered some really bad brain damage

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My mother in law...

My mother in law suffered some really bad brain damage recently and is now unable to care for her 13 year old son. The son does not want to live with his father. How. Can my husband and I get custody of the 13 year old?

Lawyer's Assistant: Family law varies by state. What state are you in?

She lives in KY we live in IN

Lawyer's Assistant: Have you talked to a lawyer yet?

We have not. This all happened so fast and we just found out how bad it was yesterday

Submitted: 9 months ago.Category: Family Law
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Answered in 2 minutes by:
7/30/2017
Family Lawyer: RobertJDFL, Lawyer replied 9 months ago
RobertJDFL
RobertJDFL, Lawyer
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 14,814
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Thank you for using Just Answer. I am a licensed attorney and look forward to helping you. I am reviewing your question and will reply back shortly.

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Family Lawyer: RobertJDFL, Lawyer replied 9 months ago

Hello,

I'm very sorry to hear about your mother-in-law. You and your husband would need to seek guardianship of the 13 year old. In order to do so, person(s) wishing to be appointed the child's guardian file a Petition and an Application with the district court in the county where the child lives, and the court, after a hearing at which the child's best interests are considered, appoints a guardian.

You can see a sample (blank) petition here. This is not an easy thing to do, because the father has rights to the child, and the courts recognize the rights of parents to raise their children. To gain custody rights, a non-parent must show that the parent is unfit, which is often difficult to do. The non-parent must prove one of the following: that the parent is unsuitable and harmful to the child; has signed an agreement to surrender custody; OR that the parent is otherwise unqualified to claim custody. Although the child may not wish to live with dad, he is a minor and does not get to make the decision. His wishes may be taken into consideration, should the court find him mature enough to render an opinion, but they will still act in what they feel is his best interest.

I would not attempt to represent yourselves in such a matter. If you are interested in pursuing it, I strongly recommend speaking with a family law attorney that specializes in this area.

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Family Lawyer: RobertJDFL, Lawyer replied 9 months ago

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The responses above are from individual Experts, not JustAnswer. The site and services are provided “as is”. To view the verified credential of an Expert, click on the “Verified” symbol in the Expert’s profile. This site is not for emergency questions which should be directed immediately by telephone or in-person to qualified professionals. Please carefully read the Terms of Service (last updated February 8, 2012).

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