While there are some instances in which grandparents are asked to step in and take custody of their grandkids out of necessity, this isn’t the norm. There are far more instances in which grandparents step in to petition the court for custody of their grandchildren because they don’t believe that the kids’ parents are doing an adequate job at parenting. These cases often don’t go well for grandparents.
You’re likely aware that it’s the responsibility of your Ohio judge to make decisions that they believe are in the best interest of a child. The truth is that unless the court is provided with some type of proof that a minor is being neglected or abused, it’s unlikely that the judge will be willing to remove custody of the child from their parent.
Most jurisdictions’ laws are written to clearly define what constitutes neglect or abuse. Not having much money or living in an inferior home to what you could provide as their grandparents is not a justifiable reason enough to remove your grandchild from the house that they share with their parents.
Abuse or neglect is often defined in state statutes as sexual exploitation, abandonment, physical violence or emotional turmoil. Parental alcohol or drug abuse may not be considered as abusive, though, unless a pregnant mother consumes it during her pregnancy.
Even if petitioning for custody isn’t an option available to you, you may still be eligible to request visitation rights with your grandchild. You may not be able to petition for such rights if your granddaughter or grandson’s parents are still married though. An attorney can advise you of this and other restrictions that may affect your ability to seek visitation or custody of your grandchild here in Hamilton.