If my husband and I are going to be caring for our 5 year old niece, what kind of guardianship do we need?

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If my husband and I are going to be caring for our 5 year old niece, what kind of guardianship do we need?

We live in one state and her mother is currently living in another; she is homeless and unable to provide her with a safe, stable place to live. We want to be able to put her in school and have control over her schooling and medical treatments. We are also concerned that her mother would come take her back while still unable to care for her. Also, is there any medical or financial assistance available to help us in caring for her? She has no clothes, shoes, bed, toys, books… we will need to buy everything.

Asked on November 24, 2012 under Family Law, Virginia

Answers:

FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

I suggest that you and your husband consult with a family law attorney to assist you in getting guardianship agreement drafted and signed by your niece's mother allowing you to be the guardian of the child for a stated period of time setting forth the scope of the guardianship.

If the mother will not sign the document, you will need to file a petition for the guardianship.

There are programs to assist you with finances for the minor through your county's social services department.


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