Can You Win Custody Of A Younger Sibling?


When both parents of a child have passed away, the responsibility for raising the child usually falls to family members. In some cases, the family member could be a young adult sibling. If the parents did not specify who should have custody of the child and other family members are opposed to the sibling having the child, a court battle could ensue.. If you are the older sibling, whether or not you are successful depends on several factors.

What Does the Court Look For?

When you file a petition for custody of your younger sibling, every aspect of your life could be scrutinized. One aspect that is evaluated is whether or not you can financially care for your brother or sister. The court is not just concerned with what is in your bank account now, but what you can possibly earn in the future and how well you manage money. 

The court also looks at whether or not you are emotionally and mentally able to care for your younger sibling.  Since maturity levels tend to vary from person to person, you could be subjected to various assessments from social workers to determine if you can parent your sibling. The judge could even order a psychiatric evaluation. 

Your sibling's age also plays a role in deciding custody. If your sibling is close in age to you, the court might question whether or not he or she would be willing to follow your rules. 

What Can You Do?

There are several steps you can take to assure the court that you are capable of raising your sibling. For instance, you can work with a financial adviser or accountant to develop a budget to show that you know how to manage money. Submit the budget and your future financial plans and how you plan to follow them to the court. 

If your parents ever expressed a desire for you to care for your younger sibling to anyone in your family or a friend, have him or her write a statement attesting to this to the court. Your parents' preferences can carry a lot of weight in court. 

You can also enroll in parenting classes. Look for classes that focuses on raising a child in the age range as your sibling. If possible, you and your sibling should start family counseling. Not only does this help the court see that you are committed to caring for your sibling, but it could provide the emotional support your sibling needs during this time. 

An attorney, like, experienced in child custody can help you find other ways to prove you are the best choice for raising your sibling. 


11 May 2016

changing a child's last name after a divorce

When I began the divorce process, I knew that I wanted to change my name back to my maiden name. I no longer wanted to be associated with the family name of the man that I was divorcing. The problem was, I have three kids that all had their father's name. I wanted to know if I would be able to change their last names to my maiden name rather than having them carry that family's name for the rest of their lives. I found out a lot about what it would take and began working to create this blog to help other women wanting to do the same thing.