More and more often we see grandparents petitioning the courts for visitation rights to their grandchildren. Depending on the jurisdiction you are in, a grandparent may be granted their petitions, especially if there are certain circumstances such as the death of one or both of the parents, parent or parents are in jail, drug or alcohol abusers, or have a history of domestic violence. Something that is less frequent is grandparents petitioning to adopt their grandchildren.
There are many reasons why a grandparent would want to adopt their grandchild rather than simply seek custody or visitation.
Having the security of knowing that the child or children will have a stable home. Having the security of knowing that the child has a home that they can trust won’t change is invaluable to the emotional development of the child. Living without the possibility of one or both of the parents coming back and fighting for custody or otherwise disrupting the lives of the children will reduce stress, allow stronger relationship bonds, and affect so many parts of the child’s life. When a child is adopted, all previous legal family ties are severed, and the adoptive parents are the legal parents of the child for all intents and purposes.
When a grandparent has custody of the child, they are granted the right to make certain decisions for the child, but these rights may be revoked or have restrictions. They are acting as a representative of the biological parent rather than the parent themselves. Adopting the child gives the grandparents full and complete reign to make decisions about the health and well-being of the child or children without any restraints placed on them.
When a grandchild is adopted they may have access to certain benefits that may not otherwise have access to. If the grandparents are retired they may qualify for social security benefits, grants/scholarships to college, better insurance benefits, etc.
The grandchild who is adopted would legally have more rights to any estate issues that may arise if the grandparent/adoptive parent passes away. This may be especially important if the biological parent has had criminal, financial, or drug/alcohol issues and the grandparents want to ensure the grandchild/adopted child is a beneficiary to their estate.
Contact an Attorney
If you are a grandparent who wishes to adopt a grandchild, contact the Tempe Family attorneys at the Ronald Kossack law firm today. You can contact us online or by calling 480-345-2652 to discuss your unique situation and discuss how we can help you achieve your goals.