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Custody of my nephew, can I adopt? My step sister is a drug addict.

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Old Nov 30th, 2008, 11:23 AM   #1
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Confused Custody of my nephew, can I adopt? My step sister is a drug addict.

I have had custody of my 5 year old nephew for the last 2 years. I had to fight in court for a long time to get that. MY sister (step) who is a complete drug addict keeps threating to take me to court and take him away from me. It has been almost a year since she has even seen him. Although I doubt she will ever clean up enough to get him it scares me to think she "could" one day just take him away because she is the biological mother. Is there a way that I can adopt and her lose all rights to him?
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Old Nov 30th, 2008, 07:17 PM   #2
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Default re: Custody of my nephew, can I adopt? My step sister is a drug addict.

It would be very difficult, almost impossible, to adopt the child against the wishes of the mother.
If it has been long enough with NO contact (not letters, not e-mails, not phone calls...), then you may be able to claim abandonment. But the length of time for this varies between States.
You would definitely need a lawyer to advise you on this.
But...I have to say that I doubt a court would reverse custody.
How much child support is the mother paying?
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Old Jan 19th, 2009, 02:06 PM   #3
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Big Grin re: Custody of my nephew, can I adopt? My step sister is a drug addict.

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Originally Posted by Jess_icka View Post
I have had custody of my 5 year old nephew for the last 2 years. I had to fight in court for a long time to get that. MY sister (step) who is a complete drug addict keeps threating to take me to court and take him away from me. It has been almost a year since she has even seen him. Although I doubt she will ever clean up enough to get him it scares me to think she "could" one day just take him away because she is the biological mother. Is there a way that I can adopt and her lose all rights to him?
His mother can not just come and take him when she wants. If you are his court appointed legal guardian, then you are the parent right now and if you don't want her around him you don't have to agree to let her see him. If she threatens to take you to court, let her. Once a parents rights have been suspended by a legal guardianship they will have an even tougher time trying to get them back. In L.A. county, the mother or father will have to prove that they are a fit parent again and provide a minimum of 2 years of rental receipts for a home/apt, all utilities, and a job. All these items will have to be in their name and no one else's. I know this because I have custody of my 2 year old nephew and I got all this information from the probate investigator that came to my house. You can adopt him and when you do her rights will be terminated. I'm trying to do the same thing right now. Good luck to you but don't worry, you have the rights to the child right now and you get to decide what to do with him. Just keep a journal of all your conversations with his mother/father. When drugs are involved they do weird and dangerous things and say scary things too. But this will be your proof that there's not much contact. My nephew's mother hasn't seen him for a year now and has only called me twice in the last 7 months. It doesn't matter that she's his biological mother, her parental rights have been suspended for a reason. Proving to be a better mother and getting the child back will be extremely difficult for these individuals. Good luck to you! God will bless you and your family.
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Old Jan 24th, 2009, 01:09 AM   #4
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Default re: Custody of my nephew, can I adopt? My step sister is a drug addict.

tbyte is correct in Washington it must be exactly two years of any form of contact (even email) before you can claim abandonment.
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Old Dec 13th, 2009, 06:21 PM   #5
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Default re: Custody of my nephew, can I adopt? My step sister is a drug addict.

I also have sole custody of my nephew for the last four years. I have had in in my care his entire 7 years of life. Now my sister (step) claims she has her self together and is taking me to court to get custody of him or visitation. Her claim is that I am unfit. I read above that she has to prove her case by having things in her name to prove she has her self together but she doesn't. To my knowledge everything is in her current boyfriends name. Her case is that he has custody of his kids and she takes care of them, so I guess she feels this means she is ready to take care of my nephew. Her current boyfriend has a house that she lives in and she doesn't work. She moved in with him 1 1/2 years ago because she had no where else to go and she moved in to be the nanny. Some how the are now "engaged" to be married this year?. I am so scared to think a judge would give her the opportunity to be in my nephews life based on her current claim.
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