There are many cases where both Mother and Father are unable to properly care for their children and a close relative steps in and cares for the children for an extended period of time. In these cases it is often difficult for the caregiver to properly handle the children's medical, educational, insurance, government benefits, and other needs because the caregiver is not the children's legal guardian. Florida Statutes Chapter 751 provides an avenue to gain temporary custody in these types of scenarios.
Temporary custody can be had by filing the proper legal pleadings with the Court and when both parents agree in writing to grant the extended family member temporary custody OR the extended family member who is caring full time for the child in the role of a substitute parent and with whom the child is presently living must currently have physical custody of the child and have had physical custody of the child for at least 10 days in any 30-day period within the last 12 months.
For the purposes of temporary custody, an extended family member is considered a relative of a minor child within the third degree by blood or marriage to the parent, and in many instances a step parent will also qualify.
Temporary Custody by an extended family member is often a good solution to allow a caregiver to provide proper care and make important decisions for the children. Call Phipps at (813) 600-3201 or Contact Us to schedule a free 15 minute telephone consultation to better understand your rights and to learn how legal representation may benefit you with your specific situation.