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Father wants custody of child living with grandparent?

Jamie Lynn asked:

My fiance’s brother wants to gain custody of his daughter who is living with the mother’s mother. The mother signed over her rights to her mother, but the father never signed anything. Does this give the grandmother full rights to the child or is the father able to take custody of his daughter? Currently the grandmother is trying to limit his visitation, is this legal of her? She works at a law firm and is using her job to take advantage of his ignorance to child custody laws.

They have not been to court for this or filed for legal custody. The grandmother has filed for child support though and was granted it from both the mother and the father.

They live in the state of Maryland.
Warenjudew – can you supply sources for me to read that say that if the grandmother has claimed child support that it automatically gives her court awarded custody? Even if the father is not absent and sees his daughter regularly.

Comments (7)


  1. Obama sucks says:

    Caffeinated Content

    If the father did not sign away his rights he can easily go to court and get custody of the child. He needs a lawyer asap.

  2. janine o says:

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    He should file for custody. Absent a very compelling reason, custody will be given to him. The Courts always prefer a parent have custody over a 3rd party.

  3. Mark says:

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    he should be able to get custody, unless the grandmother can show that he is unfit as a parent. In general the courts always try to have children with the parents unless there is reason to do so otherwise

  4. warrenjudew says:

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    If the grandmother has been able to claim child support, she then does have court custody of the child. There is a time limit that if either parent has not had contact with the child for a period of time, it can be viewed as non interest and custody granted without them present, so he may even be aware that it had been thru the courts.

    If the father wants custody or at least visitation rights, he needs to hire a family law lawyer and have them file a brief for that purpose. And don’t tell me he can’t afford one, how much is he willing to give up to be able to do so?

  5. mm_jab2006 says:

    child custody

    He can usually get some free advice from a lawyer that specializes in this area. But he needs to petition the court for full custody and provide proof that he is a suitable parent which is not hard, a home and a job is usually enough unless the court has taken the child from him. Grand parent usually have no rights to a child when the natural parents are there and able to care for the child. Once he goes to court the judge will terminate the grand parents guardianship if he is deemed capable of taking care of his child. It helps that the mother already sign over her rights because it will be easier for him to do this. But he might want to know if she permanently sign them over or if it was temporary. If he doesn’t petition the court and time goes by without him showing effort he may eventually lose his chance. How long has the child been with the grandmother? Act fast and good luck!

  6. Motherhood is cool! says:

    Create a video blog…instantly.

    It is impossible to get child support on a child you do not have legal and or phsyical custody of. and maryland has different standards for each of them. If the child lives witht he grandmother and the legal guardian, the mother, put the child there then she has physical custody of the child.

    Your fiance’s brother needs to establish his parental rights. I can only assume that they weren’t married at the time of birth, which in maryland gives him ZERO legal rights tot he child. But here is where it gets confusing. If they were married then he already has legal rights to the child and there should have been specific visitation outlined in the divorce decree. If they weren’t married then the state of Maryland has to prove paternity in order to get child support, unless he just rolls over and gives in, which is not in his best interest. 33% of men paying child support in the US are paying for children that are NOT biologically theirs, but once support is established you can’t go back and say “But i took a DNA test and I’m not the daddy!”, in the eyes of the law you are the daddy you paid for the child and biological matters are of no concern.

    Have this guy come to that is a group on yahoo’s that is specifically for dad’s rights and we have people who have been through similar situations, judge’s lawyers, children advocates and other dad’s and step-mom’s on here to use as sounding boards and get advice from.

    Good luck!

  7. Grandmother in WV says:

    OK.I am the maternal grandmother of an 18 month old boy whom has lived with me since birth.I am 37 years old.The mother(my daughter)signed a guardianship for me,the father(in prison)did not.They are not married.Paternity has been established.Both has drug usage history.Father is in a federal prison.Will be released at the end of 2011.The mother is in jail also.The father has a pending probation violation charge from failing a drug test while out on bond in 2009 awaiting his sentencing on his federal charge.The mother is 20 and the father is 32.The court already granted me temporary guardianship but the father wants the baby once he is released from prison.His father has already bought a house and has said he would add him to his payroll at his pharmacy to “prove” he has a job.What is likely to happen with my case?Is there any possible way for me to keep my grandson away from this man?He has already served 3 terms behind bars.All related to drugs in some way.He always relapses after he gets out of jail/prison.

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