What can I do to keep my child?

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What can I do to keep my child?

My brother’s ex-wife got pregnant by him and she tried to have an abortion but didn’t have the funds. She decided to put the child up for adoption and my husband and I have had custody since the birth of the child. Now he is almost 3 years old and she’s decided she wants him. She already has 4 children, is on government assistance, has no hot water and is a single parent. The last contact she had with the child was when we went to New Orleans and brought him to visit her, as his aunt almosy 6 months ago. She never calls to ask how he’s doing and since determining that she wants him she hasn’t asked if he’s allergic to anything, etc.

Asked on November 29, 2012 under Family Law, Louisiana

Answers:

B.H.F., Member, Texas State Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

You need to file a custody suit, especially since you have had the child for three years now.  Until you have a court document that says you have legal custody of this child, then she is technically entitled to custody of the child.  Since she has done nothing to support this child or be involved with this child for three years, you could allege abandonment as a basis for getting full legal custody.  Until you get a custody suit going, make her do the work.  If she really wants to see this child, then she needs to drive to you instead of you driving to make the child available.  Chances are, "out of sight- out of mind" will kick in and she would be more willing at that point to sign over custody voluntarily.


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