Guardianship of Minor

questions & answers

Question: my husband left me and my children, he is the father of our 6 yo daughter. He has been gone almost 2 months, and has not helped out financially at all. My question is, in the event of my death or incapacities, how do I grant my parents legal custody of my daughter. I am wondering if I can type a letter and have it notarized since we have not started divorce proceedings at this point in time. I just want to make sure my parents get my children in case of tragedy.

Answer:

The following is provided as general information.

A person cannot circumvent her husband's legal interest in the children by naming her own parents as "guardians" in the event of her passing. Biological parents generally have a superior right to custody over any other third party - including grandparents. If abandonment of the family exceeds six months and/or the person completely disappears, the other person can attempt to terminate parental rights by filing a petition to that effect in superior court (juvenile division). Grandparents can also petition for custody or visitation under A.R.S.  § 25-415.

Family law can be complicated and very fact specific. To find out how the laws may apply to your specific situation, you may want to consult with an attorney.

QUESTIONS

  • my husband left me and my children, he is the father of our 6 yo daughter. He has been gone almost 2 months, and has not helped out financially at all. My question is, in the event of my death or incapacities, how do I grant my parents legal custody of my daughter. I am wondering if I can type a letter and have it notarized since we have not started divorce proceedings at this point in time. I just want to make sure my parents get my children in case of tragedy.

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