Maryland families are all unique, and each shifts and adapts to meet the needs of its members; this is especially true when young children are in need of special accommodations. There are a multitude of scenarios that can lead to children moving into the care of family members other than their parents. In many cases, grandparents step up to care for their grandchildren when the going gets rough; in most instances, these arrangements serve to meet a temporary need. However, there are cases in which grandparents decide to seek child custody rights over their grandchildren, which can lead to a very specific set of legal needs.
When a family realigns to accommodate the care of one or more grandchildren, the adjustment can be difficult for all involved. For the older caregivers, realigning their lifestyle to include this new set of responsibilities can be difficult. For kids, settling into a new home away from their parents can also be a challenge. For non-traditional families such as these, it is essential to make use of all available resources to smooth the period of transition.
In many communities, support groups exist that serve the specific needs of grandparents raising grandchildren. If such a group is not readily available, there are online support networks that can serve the same basic function. It is also important to accept help from friends and family, who can assist with child care, financial issues or just provide a sounding board.
As for legal needs, Maryland grandparents who are considering seeking permanent child custody rights over their grandchildren often face a difficult path. This is an area of child custody in which a carefully tailored legal approach is required to achieve a favorable outcome. A family law attorney can advise grandparents on the best possible timing and strategy for taking on legal responsibility for the safety and well-being of their grandchildren.
Source: timesleader.com, Grandparents find child-raising support, Bill O'Boyle, Sept. 14, 2013