When it comes to child custody battles and/or guardianship of a child, the conversation can be a sensitive one. Nobody wants a child to go through a traumatic experience of parents separating, or worse, dying in a tragic accident. When unfortunate situations like these happen, however, it’s important to understand who can be granted guardianship of a child and how the process works.
Who is Eligible for Guardianship of a Child?
In today’s blog from the family lawyers at Robert J. Anderson PLLC in Dallas, we’ll discuss everything you need to know about how guardianship of a minor is determined as well as who can be eligible. Guardianship is different from adoption, so we will discuss those points as well.
If you’re in need of a family lawyer in Dallas, be sure to contact the law offices of Robert J. Anderson PLLC. We are ready to be the advocate that you need in your corner when it comes to legal separation, child custody, and any other legal issue relating to family that you may have. Call us today to schedule an appointment.
What is a Guardian?
A guardian of a child is someone who takes care of their needs. This usually comes down to making sure the child has their shelter, food, education, and medical needs met and sustained. A guardian can also manage the financial situation of a child. Guardianship differs from adoption in that it works hand-in-hand with the legal relationship between a child and their biological parents. These parents can appoint guardianship to whomever they deem worthy if they themselves are unable to provide the necessary care that their child needs.
Adoption, on the other hand, completely severs the relationship between a child and their biological parents. Adopted parents become legal parents while the biological parents concede all legal parental rights and obligations.
Who Can Become a Guardian?
Anyone who is taking on the responsibility of providing for a child is eligible for guardianship. Again, guardianship does not take parental rights away from the biological parents, but it does grant you legal rights as a caretaker. As a legal guardian, you will have a say in the child’s future.
Becoming a legal guardian will also make it easier for you to get medical care and education for your child. Guardianship is something to consider if you are caring for a child that is not your own, but for whom you plan on caring for long-term.
How Does Guardianship End?
Once you’ve acquired legal guardianship, there are a few ways that it can end. In most cases, a guardian won’t ask to be relieved of his or her guardianship, however, that is an option. If a guardian wishes to end their guardianship, the court will appoint a new guardian for that child.
The other ways in which guardianship can end include:
The death of the child.
The child turns 18 and is no longer considered a minor.
A judge determines that guardianship is no longer necessary.
The child’s financial assets are exhausted.
How to Become a Guardian
If you’ve been living with or caring for a child that is not your own, it may be time to consider becoming a legal guardian of that child. At this point, you may or may not have developed some type of relationship with the child’s biological parents — you will want to include them in the decision to become a legal guardian. Talk to the biological parents, and the child of course, in order to come to an agreement about the care that you are willing to provide before hiring a family lawyer to walk you through the process.
Choose the Family Lawyers at Robert J. Anderson PLLC
Whether you’ve made the decision to pursue legal guardianship of a child or you’re interested in learning more about the process, the family lawyers at the Dallas law offices of Robert J. Anderson PLLC can help. We work with families all over the community to make sure that children are getting the care that they need through guardianship or parental custody.
Contact us today to set up an appointment so that we can help get you the legal rights that you need to provide the best care possible.