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Adoption/Guardianship

Discussion in 'Adoption' started by Mom2Many, Aug 24, 2017.

  1. Mom2Many

    Mom2Many Law Topic Starter New Member

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    Jurisdiction:
    North Carolina
    It's a long story and please, if you need more information ask.

    We started doing foster care more than three years ago. Mom TPR'd almost immediately three years ago. We adopted the children in May.

    Prior to the adoptions ... we realized the oldest child (Now 11) was having some true issues but we were hopeful time, therapy etc. would help. Thus far nothing seems to be working and it's been over three years. We do love him and this is heart breaking for all of us.

    During this time we have been able to become quite close with his birth aunt. She's a lovely young woman who is married and recently adopted her stepson. Our son spent the summer (2 months) with them in another state. Not only was his behavior better but they had none of the problems that we seem to have. (violence, back talking, destroying his belongings, threats, physical attacks on his siblings)

    Prior to adoption there was talk of moving him but through a crappy DSS worker (She was fired just as this was being discussed and gave a negative opinion although she had seen our son only 4 times for about 10 minutes each time.) and the discussion was removed from the table. (His therapist, 3 social workers from our agency and our GAL (these people had grown to love our son and had worked with him extensively) suggested moving him to a different family as they felt his two younger sisters were a possible trigger.)

    So my questions: After discussing it with his aunt, his therapist, him and our family (he's been begging to go back and live with his aunt) we feel that giving his aunt guardianship may be a solid option. Is this legal? How would we go about this? Do we need to consult the courts or can we simply use a lawyer? We do receive adoption assistance which we would give to her for his care and we would also provide for him as needed. We want to remain his parents but feel that working with her might be a good idea since he seems so much less stressed with her. Thoughts? Ideas? Opinions?
     
  2. adjusterjack

    adjusterjack Super Moderator

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    As far as I know only a court of law can award guardianship so the aunt would have to petition the court for guardianship and you, as parents, would obviously consent.

    There is probably enough forms and instructions on your court's website so that you might be able to do this without a lawyer.

    That would likely be terminated once guardianship was awarded to the aunt. Whether the aunt could get the money from the same source is anybody's guess.

    That would be entirely up to you.

    While you might remain his legally adoptive parents any right to day to day parenting is likely to be limited if not eliminated completely once the guardianship is awarded. I couldn't say for sure but it might also involve termination of parental rights.

    I suspect that you aren't happy reading most of the above.

    An alternative is just give the aunt revocable written authorization and/or power of attorney to do this, that, and the other thing for an indefinite amount of time to see if the boy grows out of his issues. You might want to see a lawyer about those papers.

    There's nothing easy or cheap about handling a problem child. It's not like you can return him to Walmart within 90 days if he doesn't work out.
     
  3. Mom2Many

    Mom2Many Law Topic Starter New Member

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    There's nothing easy or cheap about handling a problem child. It's not like you can return him to Walmart within 90 days if he doesn't work out.

    We have no intent on trying to "return" him. That's not an option ... he's our son. BUT trying to help is a totally different matter. If a simple change of who/where he is living helps him then we are all for it. We've adopted five children, birthed six and have formal guardianship of two and informal guardianship of one. We certainly know responsibility and are not trying to shirk our duties on anyone.

    We already know that the adoption assistance will not stop. It's more of a moral decision on our part to do what is right and support our son. Certainly the little bit that the state gives us isn't enough to fully support him so we would give beyond that to make sure he's being financially supported by us.
     
  4. army judge

    army judge Super Moderator

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    You are considering what is best for the child.

    That will please the judge.

    You should discuss what you wish to do with a lawyer in your county.

    If the aunt reside in NC, what you're trying to achieve would be easier.

    The aunt will need guardianship, and that will be one of your biggest issues, along with the funds you're receiving for adopting the child.

    I'm not sure if you can simply pay her the money that someone pays you.

    Then there are the tax ramifications of the transfer.

    That is why you need t start by discussing it with an attorney you select, after interviewing at least three, unless you know one.
     
    Mom2Many likes this.
  5. Mom2Many

    Mom2Many Law Topic Starter New Member

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    I have placed calls for consults with three lawyers just today. Although we aren't new to guardianship this is the first time it will be us giving it verses taking it.

    We just want him to be ok. Three of our children are from "disrupted adoptions" where we adopted them after their first adoptive parents decided not to parent them. We would NEVER do that to him.
     
  6. zddoodah

    zddoodah Well-Known Member

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    A guardianship can be created only by a court order. It cannot be "given." The person in question is free to file for a guardianship, and you and the child's other parent are free to submit an appropriate document consenting to the adoption.

    The person seeking a guardianship must petition the court, and hiring a lawyer for that purpose would be a good idea.
     
  7. ElleMD

    ElleMD Well-Known Member

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    As the legal parents, you can allow your child to reside where ever you like. The aunt wouldn't have legal authority to enroll him in school or make medical decisions for him, but he can live with her if you agree. What you do financially is another matter. Don't be surprised if the same problems surface in the other home eventually as well. Children with emotional issues don't leave them at the door. For a short term visit, sure, the kid might be fine, but once the reality of family life in this other household sets in, it can be quite different.
     

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