Guardianship contests are won by the person who is best prepared.
We have thirty years of courtroom experience trying guardianship cases and know what to do to help you resolve your problem. The laws of guardianship allow the Court a great amount of latitude in determining who gets the children. Having a well-prepared case is very important in getting the Court to see things your way.
What if a Guardian was appointed, but Now I Want my Children Back?
In order to best assist you in the preparation of your case, it would help if we knew as much as possible about the children and what brought them to the point of needing a guardian. You can help us with this by writing a narrative of four to five pages in length with a concise description of who, what, when, where, and why before we meet for the first time. Having your story, in your own words, will help us understand the facts and law on point. If there are any documents relating to the case, gather those up and bring them with you as well.
Writing a thorough narrative will help both you and your lawyer to understand your case better, and will assist you in getting your story straight. This saves time and legal fees, and also helps us to work with you and determine what the best course of action would be to protect your rights and the interests of your children.
What we need to be able to do is show the Court why your children no longer need a guardian. So we need to prove that whatever it was that led the Court to appoint a guardian for them is over. Whether that thing is a drug addiction you have overcome, temporary unemployment, eviction from a home, or a bout of depression that left you crippled and unable to take care of your kids, we need to know what it was, and we need to show the Court that you are now able to go back to taking care of your children. During this step, it is crucial that you are honest with us. We cannot help you if you misrepresent your case and get in front of the judge and new evidence comes out that you should have told us from the beginning. We can get the Court to come over to your side, but we can’t do that if you leave out parts of the story to make yourself look better. We know that children get into guardianship situations because there were problems with the parents being able to take care of them. We need you to be honest with us about what the problems were, and show us that they are resolved so that we can help you to get your children back home with you.
What if I think the Person Who Was Appointed as the Guardian is Unfit?
The law requires a lot from guardians, and the Court has every opportunity to remove someone as the guardian of your children who is unfit to act as a guardian. We will need you to bring with you to our office everything that you have that shows how the guardian is unfit. If she isn’t providing food, clothing, and a home for your children, or is acting outside of what the Court has told her to do, or is stopping them from being educated—whatever it is, we need to know.
The next question you will have to answer is whether you are ready to resume custody of your children, or if there is someone else you would rather have appointed as the guardian. If you are unable to take back custody of your children, then you will need to have another person who is ready to become the guardian of the children. Either way, we will need to file with the Court a petition to terminate the guardianship and prove that there has been some wrongdoing on the part of the guardian that the Court has appointed.
Courts have a lot of oversight of guardians, and guardians have to comply with court orders and be reviewed by the Court. Guardians have to get court permission to make certain decisions, and if the guardian of your children isn’t doing what the Court says or isn’t doing what is best for your children, we can help you to protect your children and can help you to bring the judge around to your side.