All posts tagged: custody

Adopting Children when the Parents do not Consent

Adoptions are joyous and pleasant events for both the petitioners and the child involved. Those who file a petition for adoption are seeking to become legal parents of a child, sometimes for the first time. ¬†However, not every adoption case is uncontested, and on rare occasions, a parent or both parents will refuse to consent to the adoption petition and ask the judge to deny the adoption. Consent is the most important issue in any adoption case. You might even conclude, with a fair amount of accuracy, that it is the only issue since the adoption cannot be granted without consent in one form or another. However, a common misconception is that the parents must express their consent through a signed document for the adoption to be granted. This is not true. In order for an adoption to be granted in Florida or in Alabama, the parents must consent to the adoption. ¬† The easiest and simplest way to accomplish this legal requirement is through a signed and notarized consent to adoption. The standard consent …

Want to keep custody of your child? Good, but you may want to keep the child in Florida!

I had an opportunity to help a struggling mother in Florida who was involved in a custody battle with her child’s paternal grandparents. The child had gone to visit the grandparents, who lived in Alabama, but the child never came back. During the week-long visit, the grandparents filed a dependency petition against the mother, in Alabama, and refused to return the child. The petition alleged that the child was abused and neglected by the mother while in her custody, that the father was deployed on active military duty, and that they needed a custody order from the Alabama court to take care of the child. They obtained temporary custody at an initial hearing in the case, and the mother’s case went down hill from there. Another state can exercise jurisdiction over a Florida child, but generally that jurisdiction will only exist on an emergency basis until the case can be transferred to the child’s home state. If any jurisdiction existed in Alabama, it would have been temporary or emergency jurisdiction under Alabama’s version of the …